2021 MacBook Pro: The latest rumors
Apple has added “M1X MacBook Pro” to the tags in the YouTube post of its WWDC keynote, which could be confirmation of the name of the chip or just a cheeky reference to the rumors.
With the continuation of the Apple silicon rollout, the MacBook Pro could see some major changes soon. The company will likely take the opportunity of the new models based on Apple silicon to introduce new designs, features, and refinements. This article keeps track of the most creditable reports of the upcoming MacBook Pro, so turn to this page for the latest and greatest.
Apple’s WWDC keynote has come and gone without the release of the new MacBook Pro. It looks like we’ll be waiting until late summer or the fall for a new high-end notebook.
A recent report from DigiTimes, which has a spotty track record for rumors but is more accurate when it comes to shipping, says the mini-LED displays won’t be arriving until later in the year. The site reports that “volume production of the 14-inch MacBook Pro is likely to begin in the fourth quarter of 2021, and the 16-inch model will start in the first quarter of 2022.”
2021 MacBook Pro: Sizes, design and colors
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported that Apple will release a “redesigned” MacBook Pro this summer. It will be available in 14- and 16-inch models; Gurman did not state if the current 13-inch M1 MacBook Pro will undergo any design changes, though iOS developer Dylandkt tweeted in January that the “upcoming MacBook Pro models may not feature a logo on the bottom bezel.”
Analyst Ming Chi-Kuo said in a research note (via MacRumors) that the laptop will see a redesign in 2021. In an earlier note from May 2020 (via MacRumors), Kuo said that Apple is working on a 14-inch MacBook Pro—essentially, a transformation of the higher-end 13-inch models, similar to what happened when Apple released the 16-inch MacBook Pro to replace the 15-inch models. It’s unclear if the lower-end 13-inch MacBook Pro would remain in the lineup if a 14-inch version is revealed.
Jon Prosser of Front Page Tech reports that Apple will release a MacBook Air or a reintroduction of the MacBook in color offerings and a white bezel similar to those of the new 24-inch iMac. If Apple is using colors in its consumer-level products, it’s possible that Apple sticks with the space gray and silver options for the higher-end, which includes the MacBook Pro. And according to a tweet by previously accurate Dylandkt, the MacBook Pro branding might be removed.
2021 MacBook Pro: Mini LED displays
In March 2020, analyst Ming Chi-Kuo released a note reporting on Apple’s use of mini LEDs in new products, including the 2021 versions of the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro. Apple already launched its first mini LED screen in the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, so it’s clear Apple is already working on the tech.
However, a recent report from DigiTimes claims that “volume production of the 14-inch MacBook Pro is likely to begin in the fourth quarter of 2021, and the 16-inch model will start in the first quarter of 2022,” so it’s possible that Apple releases a mini LED option later in the year. It seems unlikely that Apple would launch a MacBook Pro that doesn’t ship for six months or more, so the first models might have the same retina LCD displays as the current MacBooks. Mini-LED is a backlighting technology for displays, but several more LEDs are used than what is currently implemented. This results in better control of the backlight, better image contrast, and greater dynamic range. If Apple’s description of the iPad Pro is any indication, the new display will deliver “true-to-life detail with a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio … (and) breathtaking 1000 nits of full‑screen brightness and 1600 nits of peak brightness.”
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