Purchasing Apple Products from Overseas?

Many people are tempted by the low cost of Apple products in Hong Kong compared to all other countries around the world, including USA. They are most attracted to the factory SIM-unlocked iPhones sold through official Apple resellers and Apple HK store online.

So they are tempted to purchase one or more of these products while they are travelling to Hong Kong. Making a purchasing decision like this should not be taken lightly. Aside from the cost, for any electronic product there should also be consideration of warrantee.

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Choosing a New iMac (August 2007)

iMac 2007As many of your may have heard Apple Inc. released new versions of the iMac line last night (HK time).

It had been an upgrade that was anticipated and over due for the past 12 months. In my opinion, they did not disappoint.

They changed the industrial design of the machine but kept the machines the same thickness as the previous versions. There are 4 standard models to choose from, plus Built-to-order (BTO) versions, where you can choose different internal hard drive capacities and memory combinations; with the 24″ model able to upgrade the default processor also. You can see the chart below and click on it to see an enlarged version.

As I always say, one should always choose a computer based on what they intend (plan) to use the computer for, rather than choosing based on price and MHz. Having said that I will start off by describing three hypothetical users.

A. A first time computer or Macintosh user

This user will use his computer for general Internet surfing, visiting information sites, online banking sites and photo album repositories. They will have a web based email account. He will download photos from his digital camera and manage his collection of audio CDs on his computer.

B. A user who may have used the Macintosh before but definitely a computer

This user has the same requirements as user A, with the following additions. He will upload and share photos on online repositories (ie. Flickr), he will download and edit videos that he had taken with his DV (digital video) camera.

C. A user who had used the Macintosh before

Like user B, will have the same requirements as A and B, with the desire to use the computer as a primary video viewing platform.

Now based on these three hypothetical users I will now recommend the appropriate iMac (August 2007) for each. In all cases, I would suggest a minimum of 2GB of memory. Depending on where you purchase the new iMac, you can probably find cheaper memory upgrade from reseller other than Apple. If you do choose that route, make sure these memory chips (RAM) come from reliable sources and a respectable manufacture. If you have faulty RAMs that’s more problems than you will ever want to deal with.

Let’s jump into the recommendations. For User A I suggest the basic model for him. The reason is because he does not have a great need for video and hence quick redraw of the screen for images. As a result the entry level iMac (August 2007) with 2GB of total memory will be sufficient.

For User B I suggest the minimum the 2nd “standard Apple model” of the iMac (August 2007) (aka. “the 20″ model with the 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor”, since I do not want to emphasis the MHz differences of the models). This is not because of the slightly faster processor, it is mainly due to the much faster (almost twice) video card in this model. Due to this user’s need for editing and processing his home videos on his new Mac, this is the minimum configuration I would recommend.

Finally, for User C I recommend he purchase the 3rd “standard Apple model” of the iMac (August 2007) (aka. “the 24″ model with the 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor”). This is because his need for using the computer as the primary video viewing device. With the 24″ it has the screen pixel resolutions to support full HD (High Definition) video content.

Speaking of HD video content, the new line of iMacs all have video capabilities to playback protected HD video (HDCP).

I am sure your needs and computing requirements will be different than User A, B or C, but I hope you find this useful and if you need, please feel free to contact me with your specific “computing requirements” and I am happy to brainstorm the perfect Mac for you.

iMac 2007 SpecsiMac (August 2007) hardware specifications

Apple’s “One More Thing…” Announcement


At this very moment (October 12, 2005, 10:00am PDT) in California Theater, San Jose, California, USA, Apple is making their “One more thing…” announcement to the members of the press.

In the past week everyone had been speculating what Apple will announce at this event. These included:

  1. video iPod
  2. radio feature on a 5th generation iPod®
  3. new revamped PowerBook
  4. even a “tablet Macintosh”

So what Apple will actually announce will have to wait until Apple finish its event.

Stay tune…

[Update: 01:35] – from MacRumors on Site

  • New thinner iMac® with built-in iSight
  • FrontRowRemote

  • New Apple application called “PhotoBooth”
  • New Apple media software called “Front Row” with an infrared remote. Having only 6 buttons to control all the video functions compared to the various versions of Microsoft Media Center’s 40+ buttons remotes
  • FrontRowRemote
  • New 5th generation iPod® Video 30GB/60GB with 2.5in TFT display displaying 320×240 pixels and realtime decoding of MPEG4 and H.264 video. Both the “5G iPod® Video 30GB/60GB” are 31% thinner than the current “iPod® Color Display 20GB” priced at USD299 and USD399 respectively
  • New iTunes® 6

So it looks like Apple is definitely getting into Digital Media Center in a way, and began to sell Music Videos on iTunes® Music Store (iTMS).

[Update: 01:59] – from iLounge on Site

  • Alleged photos of the new “5G iPod® Video 30GB”

[Update: 02:00] – from MacRumors on Site

  • TV shows will be available for purchase at USD1.99 each episode. So far ABC, Disney and Pixar are on board to sell their content. Making “Desperate Housewives”, “Lost” and more available
  • All videos purchased from iTMS will have Digital Rights Management (DRM) software built in.

[Update: 02:01] – from Apple
Here are the details of today’s announcement in the form of an Apple press releases:

Thinest All-in-one Macintosh Ever


The latest iMac (2004) is the thinest All-in-one Macintosh ever produced by Apple.

This is also the fastest iMac ever produced by Apple since the its introduction in 1998; when Apple brought the world the candy colours Macintosh. Then it shock the world with the half-moon 360° movable LCD screen iMac. Apple later speed bumped the processor and up the size of the iMac screen to an unbelievable; for this class of computer, 20″ LCD.

Now, September 2004, Apple introduced a LCD panel with the computer built-in and a lightning speed PowerPC G5 processor that was previously only available in Apple’s top of the line desktop computers.

Aside from its quick IBM’s G5 processor, it also comes with 2 different LCD sizes (17″ and 20″ ) to choose from plus a full collection of connection ports (USB, Firewire [a.k.a. iLink, IEEE 1394]) you ever want.


  • • All systems come with 256MB of RAM with a maximum of 2GB occupying 2 SIMM slots;
  • • A choice of either a slot loading Combo (DVD-ROM/CD-RW) or Super Drive (DVD-R/CD-RW);
  • • A NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 Ultra with 64MB, which is good enough for most graphic needs;
  • • An optical audio out so you can view your DVDs with true 5.1 Surround sound;
  • • Optional Bluetooth and WiFi built-in wireless connections.

With all this power and options starting at HKD10,300 to approximately HKD15,300, that’s a very good deal. With the built-in Bluetooth option you can take advantage of Apple’s Bluetooth keyboard and mouse, and with the built-in WiFi (802.11g/b) you will not have any wires to the iMac accept for the power cord.

If anyone wants a low cost machine this is definitely the one to consider; particular for those who do not need the convenience and portability of a notebook.