Apple just gave a big sign that it has changed its approach to desktop computers after it was forced to make an apology of sorts to pro Mac users a few months ago.
One of the new iMac computers it launched earlier this week has replaceable RAM and an upgradeable CPU, iFixit discovered on Wednesday.
This means that people who buy Apple’s latest iMac with 21.5″ Retina Display, which costs $US1299, will be able to swap in newer versions of key components to help their computer last longer.
“A tinker-happy user (armed with the right tools and guide) could at least double the base 8 GB of memory, turning their new iMac with Retina Display into an iMac Semi-Pro,” iFixit’s Julia Bluff wrote.
iFixit is a website that publishes repair guides for Apple products and other consumer electronics and is known for its “tear-downs,” in which it disassembles a new product and documents every step of the process.
It has aggressively criticised Apple in the past for producing products that are not user-repairable or user-upgradable. For example, similar iMac models haven’t had upgradable RAM since 2013. Previous models of this iMac have had their RAM soldered into the computer, according to iFixit.
This is a notable change from Apple, and one that power users have requested for a while.
iFixit still gives the new iMac a poor score for repairability, because parts of the computer are taped together and it is hard to take apart, but the fact that some important parts can be upgraded at all is significant.
Check out the new iMac being taken apart piece by piece over at iFixit.