Sandy Bridge models to ship with OS X Lion

Apple updates MacBook Air and Mac Mini

Apple has refreshed the firm’s Macbook Air notebook and the Mac Mini, calling the new models an ideal match for the new OS X Lion upgrade.

The updated 11.6-inch and 13-inch ultra portables are now fitted with Intel Sandy Bridge processors, much vaunted Thunderbolt ports and the new Mac OS X Lion operating system. Apple said the new notebooks offered up the twice the performance of previous models and flash storage made for "instant-on responsiveness."

"Portable, affordable and powerful, MacBook Air is the ultimate everyday notebook," said Apple marketing boss Philip Schiller. "MacBook Air features our most advanced technology and is an ideal match for Lion, especially with its new Multi-Touch gestures, full-screen apps, Mission Control and Mac App Store."

UK prices will start at £849 for the 11-inch 64GB MacBook Air all the way up to £1,349 for a top-of-the-range 13-inch model with 256GB of flash storage.

The new Mac Minis are also upgraded with Intel Core i5 and Core i7 processors, Thunderbolt ports and OS X Lion. The diminutive desktop is armed with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Ethernet, HDMI, Firewire and USB 2.0.

A Mac Mini with 2GB of RAM, Intel Core i5 processor and 500GB drive starts at £529. The new MacBook Air and Mac Mini are available one the Apple Store.

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