At Least One New MacBook With Apple Silicon 'Likely' at WWDC, Says Morgan Stanley Analyst
We're just three days away from Apple's annual developers conference, WWDC, but rumors are still divided as to whether new MacBook Pro models with Apple silicon will be announced at Apple's opening keynote on Monday.
Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty weighed in on the matter in a research note shared with MacRumors today, claiming it's "likely" that Apple will announce at least one new MacBook model powered by Apple silicon at WWDC.
"In the last 12 months, Apple has introduced not only new Macs (MacBook Air, MacBook Pro 13", and the Mac Mini) with M1, but also a high end 12.9" iPad Pro with the M1 chip," wrote Huberty. "We expect this momentum to continue into WWDC 2021, and based on our checks, we believe it's likely Apple launches a new MacBook featuring in-house designed silicon."
Huberty said there is potential for the new MacBook to feature the so-called "M2" chip, and if so, she assumes that shipments to customers would begin in the second half of 2021. This notebook would very likely be a new high-end MacBook Pro, with Apple rumored to be planning redesigned 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, but Huberty did not specify.
MacRumors discovered potential battery listings for the next-generation 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro in a Chinese regulatory database earlier this week.
Huberty's prediction lines up with leaker Jon Prosser, who said a new MacBook Pro is coming at WWDC. However, supply chain reports from outlets like Nikkei Asia and DigiTimes have suggested that mass production of new MacBook Pro models will not begin until the second half of 2021, casting at least some doubt on a WWDC announcement.
One possibility is that the new MacBook Pro models will be announced at WWDC, but not ship until several weeks later. This would be in line with the new iMac, iPad Pro, and Apple TV models, which did not begin arriving to customers until May 21, just over one month after being announced at Apple's Spring Loaded event on April 20.
The new MacBook Pro models are each expected to feature a brighter mini-LED display, an improved iteration of the M1 chip, and a new design with a flatter top and bottom. The notebooks are also expected to regain some ports that Apple removed from the MacBook Pro in 2016, including an HDMI port, SD card slot, and a magnetic charging port. Rumors also suggest the Touch Bar will be retired in favor of physical Fn keys.