MacBook Pro Updates Still to Come, But What Can We Expect?

Earlier this week, many observers were surprised that Apple did not announce updated MacBook Pro models at its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote. Sources such as KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo had indicated that updated Retina MacBook Pro models based on Intel's new Haswell processors were likely to appear at WWDC, but questions arose when model number leaks ahead of the event suggested that either the MacBook Air or MacBook Pro, but not both, would be receiving updates.

So the question for many now is: Where are the new MacBook Pros? Kuo's note prior to WWDC indicated that Apple was likely to leave the non-Retina models without an update as part of an effort to continue pushing consumers toward the Retina line, so the primary focus is really on new Retina MacBook Pro models.

retina_macbook_pro_hand
One potential explanation comes from a late April note from Kuo in which he suggested that updated Retina MacBook Pro models may not ship for some time after WWDC due to production bottlenecks on the displays used in the machines. Depending on when those updated models might be ready, Apple may simply have felt that the gap between WWDC and their availability would be too large to make an announcement at WWDC.

If that is the case, Apple could simply introduce new Retina MacBook Pro models in the coming weeks while having avoided putting an additional damper on sales of current models by pre-announcing the launch at WWDC.

Despite the lack of new Retina MacBook Pro models at WWDC, many of the circulating rumors still stand, and some of the developments seen in the new MacBook Air will likely also apply to the MacBook Pro, offering a better picture of what we can expect from Haswell-based MacBook Pro models. Among the expectations:

- Better battery life: With the new MacBook Air based on Intel's energy-efficient Haswell processors, Apple was able to boost battery life by up to 80%, with the 11-inch model's runtime increasing from 5 hours to 9 hours and the 13-inch model's moving from 7 hours to 12 hours.

macbook_air_2013_battery_life
While the Retina MacBook Pro may not see quite as dramatic improvements in battery life given the more power-hungry Retina displays and the 15-inch models' dedicated graphics chips, the Haswell platform should still offer some battery life benefits for the Retina MacBook Pro line. The current models are rated for 7 hours of battery life at both 13-inch and 15-inch sizes.

- Haswell processors: Intel has a well-stocked lineup of mobile Haswell processors in both dual-core and quad-core varieties now available, so Apple will have no problem incorporating the latest chips into its MacBook Pro models. Intel's advanced "Iris" integrated graphics should bring significant performance improvements to the line, although it remains to be seen just how Apple will balance performance and power draw.

- 802.11ac Wi-Fi: With the new faster 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard making its way into the updated MacBook Air and Apple releasing updated AirPort Extreme and AirPort Time Capsule base stations, it is clear that Apple will be rolling out 802.11ac support across its lineups as they are updated.

flash_storage_icon- Faster PCIe-based flash storage: The new MacBook Air takes advantage of PCIe-based flash storage, pushing peak read/write throughput to nearly 800 MB/s. Apple announced that the same technology is coming to the Mac Pro later this year, and it will presumably also be coming to the MacBook Pro and other Macs.

- Slimmer 13-inch model?: Ming-Chi Kuo has claimed several times that Apple is planning to slim down the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, despite the fact that the machine was just introduced last October. It is unclear how much thinner Apple is planning to make the machine, but the current design is slightly thicker than that of the 15-inch model: 0.75 inches vs. 0.71 inches.

- Full HD FaceTime camera: Kuo has also claimed that the next-generation Retina MacBook Pro models will see upgrades to 2.0-megapixel 1080p FaceTime cameras for improved video quality on the machines' high-resolution displays. The Retina MacBook Pro models currently use a 720p camera.

- Timing: With the predicted WWDC keynote timing having come and gone, there is now considerable uncertainty about just when a Retina MacBook Pro update might occur. It seems unlikely that a launch would come within the next week or two given the proximity to WWDC, but any time after that would seem to be reasonable.

It also makes sense for Apple to target a launch before September, as the company is reportedly aiming to launch new iPhone and iPad models beginning around that time, with the new Mac Pro also presumed to be coming relatively late in the year. While Apple did stack up a number of hardware releases in the fall of 2012, ideally the company will be able to spread them out a bit more in 2013 to maintain public interest and smooth out sales spikes.

Related Forum: MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

ZacNicholson Avatar
109 months ago
I don't want someone to see me in true HD. I am scary enough in 720 p :D
Score: 45 Votes (Like | Disagree)
yycguy Avatar
109 months ago
I am going to wait and get me one of these bad boys!!
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
samac92 Avatar
109 months ago
They need to fix that the computer goes into hibernation mode after 4 hrs of sleep (when plugged in) -- it takes a few minutes to start up from this, plus when unplugging the power from the machine, the hard drive starts up making it somewhat dangerous to lug around if the drive is spinning...

A few minutes to start from hibernation? It should take a couple of seconds, and the MacBook Pros don't have spinning hard drives they use all flash storage.

Your comment sounds like it has come from 2003 :p
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Krazy Bill Avatar
109 months ago
Two thing to consider...

#1) School event starts soon

#2) ThunderBolt 2

Apple won't update anything literally "days" after the school promotion begins. It'll piss people off. They'll use TB2 later this year as the excuse to hold off. Also, won't irritate the Summer buyers as much.

BTW... I have nothing to base this on and I'm about to start my 7th beer.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OrangeSVTguy Avatar
109 months ago
I wonder when Apple will put the retina displays in the Airs and basically just combine the two platforms.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
signalpst Avatar
109 months ago
Why no rMBP at WWDC you ask?

Simple.

They'll launch it alongside Mavericks public release in the fall.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...
airtag in hand

Apple Enhancing AirTags Anti-Stalking Measures With Android App and Shorter Sound Intervals

Thursday June 3, 2021 11:10 am PDT by
Apple is enhancing AirTags security to prevent stalking using the Bluetooth devices, Apple told CNET today. Apple is already sending out over-the-air updates to AirTags that will shorten the amount of time before an unknown AirTag alerts you if it is in your possession. At the current time, AirTags play a sound after three days of being away from their owner. After the update, AirTags will...
maxresdefault

Here's How Apple's New iPhone to iPhone Data Migration Feature Works in iOS 12.4

Tuesday July 23, 2019 1:20 pm PDT by
Apple this week released iOS 12.4, the newest version of iOS 12 available for iPhones and iPads. One of the new features in iOS 12.4 is an updated data migration option that uses device to device transfers rather than relying on iCloud. Apple didn't provide much information on the new data migration feature, so we thought we'd check it out in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the ...
youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
tmobilelogo

T-Mobile Data Breach Included Personal Information of Almost 50 Million Customers

Wednesday August 18, 2021 5:41 am PDT by
T-Mobile has issued a statement with further details about a cyberattack that the company confirmed earlier this week, confirming that the data breach included the personal information of almost 50 million current, former, and prospective customers. Late last week, T-Mobile confirmed that a forum post that purported to offer data from more than 100 million people was the result of a company...
airtag precision finding

AirTag Includes U1 Chip for 'Precision Finding' Feature

Tuesday April 20, 2021 12:11 pm PDT by
Apple's long-awaited AirTag was finally unveiled today, and as expected, the small circle-shaped accessories can be attached to items like wallets, keys, and more to allow them to be tracked in the Find My app. As was rumored ahead of release, each AirTag is equipped with a U1 chip, and on devices that also have U1 chips, there's a Precision Finding feature. U1 Ultra Wideband chips are...
m1 macbook air

Kuo: Mini-LED MacBook Air Coming in Mid-2022

Thursday July 22, 2021 7:48 pm PDT by
Apple will release a new version of the MacBook Air around the middle of 2022, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in note to investors seen by MacRumors. The upcoming MacBook Air will feature a 13.3-inch mini-LED display, which would make it the second Mac to gain mini-LED technology after the 2021 MacBook Pro, which is rumored to include a mini-LED display and is expected to launch later ...
Apple Films Tom Hanks Finch First Look

Apple Original Film 'Finch' Starring Tom Hanks to Premiere November 5

Thursday August 12, 2021 8:52 am PDT by
Apple today announced that the original film "Finch," starring Tom Hanks in its titular role, will premiere on Apple TV+ on Friday, November 5 and shared a first-look image from the film. The first look at "Finch," shared by Apple. The film, which is anticipated to be an awards season contender, revolves around a man, a robot (played by "Get Out" actor Caleb Landry Jones), and a dog that form ...
2016 macbook pro flexgate b

Apple Faces Another Class-Action MacBook Pro ‘Flexgate’ Lawsuit

Thursday August 20, 2020 6:43 am PDT by
Another class-action complaint has been lodged against Apple, which claims that the company was aware of a MacBook Pro design flaw that caused some devices to have backlight display issues (via Apple Insider). The so-called "flexgate" problem was present in some MacBook Pro models manufactured between 2016 and 2017. The problem appears as dark patches along the bottom of the MacBook Pro's...
macbook air m1 first benchmark

Apple Silicon M1 Chip in MacBook Air Outperforms High-End 16-Inch MacBook Pro

Wednesday November 11, 2020 4:43 pm PST by
Apple introduced the first MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini with M1 Apple Silicon chips yesterday, and as of today, the first benchmark of the new chip appears to be showing up on the Geekbench site. The M1 chip, which belongs to a MacBook Air with 8GB RAM, features a single-core score of 1687 and a multi-core score of 7433. According to the benchmark, the M1 has a 3.2GHz base...