Apple plans to release 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 “gearing up” for shipments of the upcoming products.
The report corroborates a number of rumors that have surfaced over this summer and makes the prospect of an October MacBook release look increasingly likely.
In June, just days after Apple dropped this year’s M2-powered MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, Bloomberg reported that updated 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models could ship by early 2023. These MacBooks are unlikely to look much different from their predecessors but are expected to include more powerful M2 Max chips with 12 CPU cores and up to 38 GPU cores.
This report also postulated a 15-inch MacBook Air slated for next spring at the latest and a 12-incher by early 2024.
In August, Bloomberg reported that the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBooks were “well into development and testing” and might release as early as this fall. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, another reliable leaker, has also predicted that the products will begin mass production in Q4 of this year.
Apple traditionally unveils hardware in October, and we do expect the company to hold a hardware event in Cupertino next month. However, the specific hardware announced at this event has varied over the years; we got our first look at the M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro models there in 2021, but we could just as easily see an iMac or Mac Pro this year. (Leakers have been fairly confident that we’ll likely see a new iPad Pro this fall, too.)
These reports of a Q4 release, however, make it seem more and more 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 from the devices for several years. (It also added, among other design elements, the controversial notch at the top of the laptops’ displays.)
We don’t expect this year’s MacBooks to include chassis changes on that scale. Kuo’s sources have indicated that new processors will be “the main upgrade” to the MacBook Pro line this year. (It would also be unusual for a MacBook model to see significant design changes two years in a row.)
Kuo has also predicted that the processors debuting in these machines are unlikely to be the first 3nm MacBook chips, as some rumors had previously indicated might be the case. Kuo expects that the new MacBooks “may still adopt the 5nm advanced node,” meaning they’d be built on the same process that recent M2 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models use. (The new A16 Bionic, which powers the iPhone 14 Pro, uses a 4nm structure.)
There are only a few more weeks to speculate — it looks increasingly likely that all will become clear at Apple’s October launch event.