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iMac 2021 launch now looks imminent — here's why

iMac 2021 leak
(Image credit: Front Page Tech)

The latest macOS public beta has just arrived, and internet sleuths just discovered references to two new iMac 2021 models. These are the machines rumored to come with Apple Silicon chips.

According to 9to5Mac, there are references to ‘iMac21,1’ and ‘iMac 21,2’ in the macOS Big Sur 11.3 beta 5. However, the site is quick to point out that those numbers don’t correlate with the new rumored sizes for the iMac 2021.

Instead, the site has confirmed that both iMac 2021 units have the same codenames as iMacs mentioned in a separate report earlier this year. The key detail here is that J456 and J457, as they were called, are supposed to come with 21.5-inch and 27-inch displays and Apple Silicon chips.

We’ve been hearing more and more about the new range of iMacs recently, and it’s rumored that they will appear at Apple’s April event alongside the new iPad Pro 2021, AirTags, and other new products. 

Given that Apple has just discontinued the iMac Pro, and some 21.5-inch iMac models, it certainly seems like it has the iMac 2021 ready to go. More recently, an app developer noticed a crash report notifying them that an ARM-based iMac had been using their app, further increasing speculation.

Bloomberg has reported that the iMac 20201 will sport a new design that mimics that of Apple’s Pro Display XDR. So you can expect thinner bezels and a more immersive viewing experience. Apple Silicon chips are also a near-certainty, given Apple’s push towards developing its products in house.

Given how well the M1 chip has performed in the MacBook Air M1 and MacBook Pro M1, it clearly looks like going the Apple Silicon route will boost performance. 

There have been rumors of an M1X chip that offers significantly more power than the standard M1 chip. While there’s been very little word on where or when it might appear, a desktop machine is a sensible option. It’s rumored to have eight performance cores, double that of the original M1 chip

We’ll have to wait until the Apple April event to find out more. But it certainly sounds like Mac fans have a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks. Stay tuned to Tom’s Guide and we’ll bring you all the latest news as it's announced.

Tom Pritchard

Tom covers a little bit of everything at Tom’s Guide, ranging from the latest electric cars all the way down to hot takes on why Christopher Nolan is wrong about everything. Appliances are also muscling their way into his routine, which is a pretty long way from his days as Editor at Gizmodo UK. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining that Ikea won’t let him buy the stuff he really needs online.