New Slim 12" MacBook and MacBook Air Updates Soon
A new forum post on Weiphone.com [Google Translation] has revealed a number of details about Apple's upcoming plans for its MacBook notebooks as well as some details about its iWatch initiative. The author of the post has posted legitimate leaks and photos of un-released MacBook hardware in the past, lending credibility to this new information.
The poster writes about the upcoming MacBook Pro line as well as a new 12" notebook that has previously been predicted, suggesting the future MacBook could be released without a fan assembly and with a redesigned trackpad. A MacRumors reader provides a summary translation of the post:
1. MacBook Air updates are coming soon; MacBook Pro updates won't occur until September.
2. He discusses a new 12 inch notebook without fan assembly. It comes with a new trackpad design that doesn't include the mechanical button, as we do on current MacBooks.
3. An Apple watch device does exist but still in prototype stage, so its announcement won't come anytime soon.
It is not entirely clear where a potential 12" MacBook might fit into Apple's product line. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo first predicted in October that Apple would be releasing a 12" slim MacBook with a Retina Display this later year:
We expect the unprecedented 12" model will boast both the portability of the 11" model, and productivity of the 13" model. The high resolution display will also offer the outstanding visual experience of the Retina MacBook Pro. The offering will likely be lighter and slimmer than the existing MacBook Air to further highlight ease of portability in the cloud computing era.
The buttonless trackpad design that the author describes may be related to a recent patent application by Apple, which describes a buttonless trackpad that uses an array of sensors and an actuator to mimic the function and tactile feedback of the current trackpad.
The author of the post also comments on Apple's much-rumored smart watch, noting that it remains in the prototype stages and is unlikely to see a release soon. That is in line with other rumors, which have targeted a late 2014 release date for the product.