It’s no secret that Apple is developing two new MacBook Pro models due for release in late 2021.
Following the success of the new M1 MacBook Pro back in November 2020, everyone has been eagerly anticipating the release of the next model, which is expected to have the biggest overhaul we’ve seen since 2016.
So what do we know about the exciting new release so far? Well, thanks to a number of leaks, we actually know a fair bit about the new MacBook Pro models.
Mass Production Has Begun
According to a new report from DigiTimes, the 2021 MacBook Pro has reportedly entered mass production with 600,000-800,000 units to arrive between August and November.
Apple will release the new MacBook Pro in a 14- and 16-inch model, which will replace the 13.3-inch and 16-inch models we have currently.
For the 14-inch model, the device itself will likely remain a similar size to the current 13.3-inch version, but with a significant screen increase, thanks to a reduction in the top and side bezels.
Both models will likely feature some significant design changes as well, with Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claiming we will see a flat-edged design instead of the current curved look. Kuo claims this will look “similar to the iPhone 12”.
If the pandemic has taught us anything, its that a 720p webcam simply doesn’t cut it anymore. When you’re working from home and the idea of a Zoom meeting feels more normal than catching up with your friends at a local cafe, a high-quality webcam is a non-negotiable. And thankfully, Apple has listened to this.
The upcoming MacBook Pro models will reportedly include a 1080p webcam, which is a significant upgrade from the 720p option we’ve been given with the current MacBook Pro.
No Touch Bar
The last time we saw a major MacBook upgrade was in 2016 when Apple gave us the Touch Bar, but it looks like it has already decided to axe the feature in this year’s redesign.
According to Display Supply Chain Consultants, Apple will axe the Touch Bar from future MacBook Pro models.
“Touch Bars continue to be the #3 application with a 18% unit share and 1.2% revenue share in Q1’21,” DSCC says. “We expect Touch Bars to be exceeded by tablets when Apple starts the adoption of the 10.9″ AMOLED iPad. Further, our sources suggest that Apple may cancel the Touch Bar in the future.”
Additionally, this was seemingly confirmed in stolen schematics leaked in a ransomware attack earlier this year. However, it’s worth noting that Apple is yet to officially confirm it.
Ports! Lots Of Ports!
If you’ve purchased a MacBook since 2016, you’ve probably spent a fair bit of time screaming about the severe lack of ports.
While recent models have had as little as two USB-C ports (one of which is used for charging the device) and a 3.5mm headphone jack, MacBook lovers can rest assured that Apple is finally giving us back at least some of the ports they’ve stolen in recent updates.
According to prominent Apple prognosticator Ming-Chi Kuo, we should be seeing both a HDMI port and an SD card slot returning to the new MacBook Pro models we’re getting this year. Can I get a hell yeah? (HELL YEAH!)
“We predict that Apple’s two new MacBook Pro models in 2H21 will have several significant design and specification changes,” Kuo said, according to MacRumors. “Some of the practical changes for users are equipping with the SD card reader and HDMI port.”
Honestly, just give us a regular USB port again, I’m begging you.
MagSafe Chargers Are Back
In news that has me particularly excited, Apple is reportedly set to bring back the MagSafe charger.
For years, Apple blessed us with a charger that would magnetically disconnect if you tugged too hard on the cable. I simply cannot stress just how many times this has saved me from sending my MacBook flying across the room when I trip over the cable. But during 2016’s big redesign, this was traded out for a USB-C charger.
Thankfully, Apple has finally decided that USB-C chargers are very, very dumb and will reportedly bring back the beloved MagSafe charger this year. Thank the lord!
Apple is yet to officially confirm it, but all signs point to the new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros being the first devices to be fitted with the coveted M1X or M2 chip.
Although the name is yet to be confirmed, the rumoured specs for the M1X chip are as follows:
– 8 performance cores.
– 4 high efficiency cores.
– Coming first on a MacBook Pro
16” unveiling as a press release.
– According to a source who used a prototype, “if you think M1 is fast, you haven’t seen M1X”.
-Name isn’t final though. pic.twitter.com/tpBhXpDCad
— LeaksApplePro (@LeaksApplePro) November 22, 2020
We have no official word on a release date just yet, but we’re expecting to see the MacBook Pro 14- and 16-inch models arrive later in 2021.
We’ll be sure to update you when an official release date is announced.