2021 MacBook Pro Rumored to Feature More Ports: Here's a Look at What Previous Models Offered

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo today outlined his expectations for all-new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models later this year, including the return of the classic MagSafe charging connector, the removal of the Touch Bar, a new flat-edged design, and the return of more ports built into the notebooks for expanded connectivity.

2015 macbook pro side profile article
One of the most controversial design changes to the MacBook Pro came in 2016, when Apple removed the majority of ports from the notebook, forcing users who still rely on I/O options like USB-A and HDMI to purchase adapters or docks. Apple used the removal of ports as an opportunity to tout its "thinnest and lightest MacBook Pro ever," but the decision was criticized by many users and even prompted a "dongle hell" meme.

While current MacBook Pro models are equipped with only two to four Thunderbolt ports and a 3.5mm headphone jack, it wasn't always this way. From 2012 to 2015, the 15-inch MacBook Pro offered a wider selection of I/O, including a MagSafe connector, two Thunderbolt ports, two USB-A ports, an HDMI port, an SD card reader, and a 3.5mm headphone jack.

2015 macbook pro ports

2015 model of 15-inch MacBook Pro

In 2011, the 15-inch MacBook Pro offered even more connectivity options, including MagSafe, a Gigabit Ethernet port, FireWire 800, a Thunderbolt port, two USB-A ports, an SD card reader, separate audio in and audio out jacks, a CD/DVD drive, and a slot to connect a Kensington security lock. This model also had a small strip of LEDs built into the chassis that showed how much charge the battery had remaining with the push of a small button.

2011 macbook pro ports

2011 model of 15-inch MacBook Pro

For now, it remains unclear what new ports will be added to the 2021 MacBook Pro, if the rumor proves to be accurate. In his research note, obtained by MacRumors, Kuo said that the notebooks will be "equipped with more types of I/O, and most users may not need to purchase additional dongles," but he did not share anything more specific.

Kuo expects the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models to launch in the third quarter of 2021, which begins in late June.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro 14 & 16"
Related Forum: MacBook Pro

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Top Rated Comments

itsmeaustend Avatar
44 months ago
Totally miss those Battery indicator lights! It was a pretty useful feature...
Score: 44 Votes (Like | Disagree)
skitidetdu Avatar
44 months ago
Kept my 2015 MacBook Pro just for the extra ports. Glad to see them back!
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sw1tcher Avatar
44 months ago
Apple: We care about the environment so we're not going to provide power adapters with future iPhones.

Apple: We're going to remove still widely used ports like USB-A and HDMI and give you not enough USB C ports and then force users to purchase dongles and docks because... it'll be good for the environment? ?
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jav6454 Avatar
44 months ago
They should just add MagSafe, HDMI and an USB-A port.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AngerDanger Avatar
44 months ago

Well if we look at Kuo's note:


You can imagine an iPad Pro sitting on a surface will be how the base of the new MacBook Pro will be. I don't know if it will have rubber feet? I'm thinking it will sit on a table much like Gooogle's Pixelbook from a couple of years ago.



That should allow for full size HDMI (maybe HDMI 2.1?) and an SD card slot? I don't see them going back to USB-A sized ports.

Either way a right angle design on the display lid would at least hopefully mean that we'd have a better quality web cam, assuming that it's not only for the space of Mini LEDs, but could also accommodate FaceID too? One can only hope!
Probably not going back to OG Thunderbolt-style ports, but here's a mockup of what the flat edges could look like.



Attachment Image
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ccsicecoke Avatar
44 months ago
I just need the SD card slot back

Counting on slow wireless transferring of thousands of pictures is insane
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)