11.6-Inch 'MacBook' Headed to Manufacturing?
In a brief tidbit posted today, DigiTimes claims that Apple manufacturing partner Quanta is scheduled to ship 400,000-500,000 "MacBooks" carrying an 11.6-inch screen size before the end of this year, suggesting that a release may be near.
Meanwhile, Quanta has reportedly landed orders for 11.6-inch MacBooks from Apple. Shipments of 11.6-inch MacBooks are expected to top 400,000-500,000 units in 2010.
It is unclear, however, whether the story is referring to the actual MacBook product, as the site had previously claimed that Apple was preparing to launch an 11.6-inch MacBook Air. Apple's MacBook is not necessarily considered due for an update, having just received a spec bump in May. A MacBook Air refresh, however, is long overdue, having last seen a change in June 2009.
Apple has established a pattern of updating its notebook models in the October-November timeframe, with the MacBook specifically seeing refreshed models debut in November 2006, November 2007, October 2008, and October 2009. Consequently, it seems reasonable that we may see at least some new notebook models make an appearance before the end of the year, and while we have claims that there will be at least one model in a smaller 11.6-inch size, uncertainty remains over which product line will gain the new form factor.