As we approach the first anniversary of the 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro’s release, it appears that Apple is plotting a modest refresh for its flagship laptop.
Supply chain publication DigiTimes once again reports that MacBook Pro models are coming in the fourth quarter of 2022. While it doesn’t mention specific models, it’s almost certain to be a refresh of the 14 and 16-inch models, not only because a year will have passed since their release, but because a 13-inch MacBook Pro for 2022 already exists.
It’s not the first time the publication has made this claim, and while no specific date is listed, the well-connected Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman has long predicted that Apple will have its second big Fall event next month with a focus on iPads and “high-end Macs”.
We’re not expecting huge changes though. Last year’s introduction of 14 and 16-inch models with a notch, a new squared off look and ports aplenty was a big change, and Apple tends to keep MacBook designs relatively static over a few hardware generations.
The main change will be on the inside, with the introduction of the M2 Pro and M2 Max chips. There was some uncertainty over whether these would be manufactured to a new 3nm process, but lately the evidence seems to be pointing at Apple sticking with 5nm. We can still look at significant performance and efficiency improvements — just not as great as they would be with a 3nm process, which is now expected in 2023 or later. Otherwise, the analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has warned not to expect much in the way of change.
Apple’s October event, assuming it happens as predicted, won’t just be about laptops, of course. First of all, it’s possible that Apple’s desktops — the Mac mini and Mac Pro could benefit from the same upgrade to M2. The latter of these is the final member of the Mac family that’s still laboring away with an Intel Xeon W chip, which makes it a tough sell in 2022 given its $5,999 price of entry for weaker performance.
As for tablets, we’ve already seen the iPad Air 2022, which leaves two likely upgrades. The 2022 iPad will likely feature USB-C connectivity, a larger body with a higher resolution screen and an upgrade to the iPhone 12’s A14 Bionic chip. The iPad Pro 2022, meanwhile, will likely get the same M2 chipset as the powerful laptops, and there’s talk of MagSafe wireless charging being introduced.
Hopefully Apple will end the suspense soon and send out invites for the October event. If you’re eying up an iPad or a Mac of some kind, you’re probably best off waiting just a little while longer.