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New Apple iBooks Due by September

Apple is on the brink of introducing a new series of their iBook consumer laptops, insiders say. But consumers should not expect the 'Books to sport a new enclosure until at least April of next year.

The forthcoming revision to the iBook line is said to sport a number of logic-board enhancements and refinements, while the portable's form-factor and 12.1" display will remain as is.

According to sources in Apple Manufacturing, the new series of iBooks are scheduled to hit the streets in quantity by the end of September, with an announcement coming sometime in the next six weeks.

These units, which go by the code-name "Midway," are said to pack superior ATI graphics cards sporting a total of 8MB of Video RAM. The current line of iBooks ship with only 4MB.



Rumor has it that the company will finally ad a single FireWire port on the side of the more pricier Special Edition 'Midway' iBook. The iBook product line is currently the only line from Apple which does not offer the technology. Likewise, sources claim this higher-end version will also sport an Apple 4X DVD-ROM drive capable of real-time DVD playback.

The revised iBooks will continue to feature a 66MHz system bus, and will run at speeds of up to, but not exceeding, 466MHz, sources said. The lower-end models will apparently continue to sport an Apple CD-Drive and are not expected to ship with the addition of a FireWire port.

Sources in the Valley claim that Apple was also working to adjust the color hues of the new iBooks, as they have done for almost each revision to the iMac. However, it is currently unknown which of the many flavors Midway will actually ship in.

Pricing on the low-end models is expected to be very aggressive.