Apple seems to be going all-in on its new flat-sided product design according to a new claim by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo in a new note to investors and seen by MacRumors (opens in new tab). Given we've been looking at almost identical MacBooks for the past decade or so, this could herald one of the biggest changes to Apple's laptops in recent memory.
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Kuo said: "In terms of casing design, the new models cancel the curvy design of existing models' top and bottom parts and adopt a flat-edged form factor design similar to the iPhone 12."
From the top, the existing MacBook line already looks a little like the iPhone 12, only with a different aspect ratio. However, the convex top and bottom surfaces of the laptops don't mesh with recent iPhone designs, the last model with a curved back being the iPhone 3GS back in 2009.
Older rumors refute Kuo's latest prediction, however. Mark Gurman (opens in new tab) of Bloomberg has said there will be "only minor design changes" between the current and next-gen MacBooks. However, he did say there would be a reintroduced MagSafe charging port, and new displays, potentially using long-rumored mini-LED panels.
The biggest changes to the next generation of MacBooks will all be found within Cupertino's next laptop. That's because of Apple's proprietary M1 chips, which have so far appeared in the latest MacBook Air and MacBook Pro (13-inch). It's anticipated that we'll see the Apple M1 chip, or a new updated version, used in the 2021 13-inch model, or a fresh 16-inch MacBook Pro model.
The upcoming Apple Spring 2021 event isn't thought to feature new MacBook models. However, there are more specific rumors around the iMac 2021 making an appearance in March. Any changes seen there may reflect whatever Apple has in store for the MacBook line later in the year.