Apple plans to launch new MacBook models in the fourth quarter of this year, according to a new report from DigiTimes. DigiTimes also reported last week that suppliers are “preparing” for upcoming product shipments.
The report backs up a number of rumors that surfaced this summer and makes the prospect of an October MacBook release increasingly likely.
In June, just days after Apple discontinued this year’s M2-powered MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, Bloomberg reported that updated 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro models could ship by early 2023. These MacBooks likely won’t be much different from their predecessors, but are expected to include more powerful M2 Max chips with 12 cores of processor and up to 38 GPU cores. .
That report also postulated a 15-inch MacBook Air due next spring and a 12-inch in early 2024.
In August, Bloomberg reported that the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBooks are “well advanced in development and testing” and could be released as soon as this fall. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, another reliable leaker, has also predicted that the products will start mass production in the fourth quarter of this year.
Apple traditionally unveils hardware in October, and we expect the company to hold a hardware event in Cupertino next month. However, the specific material announced at this event has varied over the years; we got our first look at the MacBook Pro M1 Pro and M1 Max models in 2021, but we might as well see an iMac or Mac Pro this year. (Leakers are pretty confident we’ll probably see a new iPad Pro this fall, too.)
These reports of a fourth-quarter release, however, make it seem increasingly likely that Apple will follow last year’s schedule and announce new MacBook Pros next month.
Last year’s MacBook Pro releases were massive redesigns, bringing back MagSafe and a number of ports that had been missing on devices for several years. (It also added, among other design elements, the controversial notch at the top of laptop screens.)
We don’t expect this year’s MacBooks to include chassis changes on this scale. Kuo’s sources said the new processors will be “the major upgrade” to the MacBook Pro lineup this year. (It would also be unusual for a MacBook model to see significant design changes two years in a row.)
Kuo also predicted that the processors debuting in these machines are unlikely to be the first 3nm MacBook chips, as some rumors had previously indicated. Kuo expects new MacBooks “could still adopt the advanced 5nm node,” meaning they would be built on the same process as the recent M2 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models. (The new A16 Bionic, which powers the iPhone 14 Pro, uses a 4nm structure.)
There are only a few weeks left to speculate – it seems increasingly likely that all will become clear at Apple’s launch event in October.