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M2 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro could launch this year after all

MacBook Air 2022 render
(Image credit: LeaksApplePro)

Update: We reckon Apple's next laptop needs to be the MacBook Air 2022.

The long-rumored Apple M2 chip is expected to appear in both the potential MacBook Air 2022 and the MacBook Pro 2022, despite earlier reports suggesting otherwise. 

That's according to 9to5Mac (opens in new tab), which reported that its sources have also claimed the two rumored M2-powered MacBooks are expected to arrive "later this year."

Speculation surrounding the upcoming MacBooks featuring an M2 chip has been around for a while now, but more recently, we've been spotting reports that denied that possibility altogether. Reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently predicted that the upcoming MacBook Air might sport an M1 chip instead

But it looks like it might be to early to put that rumor to bed, as 9to5Mac's sources say that "the machine is being developed with the new M2 chip."

According to the report, the MacBook Air is allegedly codenamed J413 and "is expected to be released in a single version featuring M2." The chip itself is reportedly "based on the A15 chip" and is being internally referred to as "Staten." The story also hinted that the M2 chip could pack an 8-core CPU (similar to what is seen in the existing base Apple M1 chip), however, the chip could also get a 10-core GPU - a sizeable upgrade compared to the M1's 7 and 8-core GPU.

But the M2 chip isn't expected to outperform the premium M1 Pro, M1 Max and the newly-introduced M1 Ultra chips. However, Apple is already reportedly working on the high-end variants of the M2. 9to5Mac recently reported that the alleged M2 Pro chip is also expected to "power one of the new Mac mini models."

And Apple could reportedly equip the rumored cheaper version of the MacBook Pro with the M2 chip as well. That machine is supposedly codenamed J493 and will be "based on the current 13-inch MacBook Pro." It's worth noting that 9to5Mac's sources made it clear that the device "should retain the current design" and will not adopt the look of the latest 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models. 

It's also possible that Apple might decide to drop the "Pro" in the name of this MacBook model, which could help better distinguish the current powerful Pro models from those with lesser chips. 

9to5mac also added that the release date for both of the aforementioned devices is still up in the air. However, its sources specified that the "machines are in advanced stages of development," meaning it's likely that they could arrive sometime this year.

Both the MacBook Air and the MacBook Pro are among the devices that didn't make an appearance during the Peek Performance Apple event. But judging by previous reveals, there's a good chance that Cupertino could have more announcements reserved for this year's WWDC and the usual fall events, one of which will surely see the launch of the iPhone 14

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Denise Primbet
News Writer

Denise is a Life Reporter at Newsweek, covering everything lifestyle-related, including health, relationships, personal finance, beauty and more. She was formerly a news writer at Tom’s Guide, regularly producing stories on all things tech, gaming software/hardware, fitness, streaming, and more. Her published content ranges from short-form news articles to long-form pieces, including reviews, buying guides, how-tos, and features. When she's not playing horror games, she can be found exploring East London with her adorable puppy. She’s also a part-time piano enthusiast and regularly experiments in the kitchen.