Only a few days separate us from this year’s Apple developer conference. Apple will open the WWDC with a keynote on June 7. The focus will primarily be on software topics (iOS 15, iPadOS 15, macOS 12 and co.). But the star of the show could be a new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro. Rumors are gathering that Apple will present a model with numerous design changes on Monday. Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty now agrees with that.
At least one new MacBook Pro at WWDC
Katy Huberty has commented on what is probably the hottest topic ahead of this year’s WWDC in a note to investors. If the analyst has her way, Apple will “probably” announce at least one new MacBook Pro model with Apple Silicon Chip. The letter states:
“In the last 12 months, Apple has not only introduced new Macs (MacBook Air, MacBook Pro 13-inch and the Mac Mini) with M1, but also a high-end iPad Pro 12.9-inch with the M1 chip. We expect this momentum to continue through WWDC 2021, and based on our research, we think it’s likely that Apple will unveil a new MacBook with an in-house developed chip system.”
Huberty says there is a possibility that the new MacBook will feature the so-called “M2” chip. If so, she expects it would begin shipping to customers in the second half of 2021. This notebook would most likely be a new high-end MacBook Pro, she concludes.
Huberty’s assessment coincides with that of leaker Jon Prosser, who also spoke of a new MacBook Pro at WWDC. This opinion is also shared by Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives, who expects the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro at the developer conference.
This is contradicted by reports from the supply chain. For example, Nikkei Asia and DigiTimes recently said that mass production of new MacBook Pro models will not begin before the second half of 2021, which raises some doubts about a WWDC announcement, at least among some insiders.
One possibility is that the new MacBook Pro models will be announced at WWDC, but won’t ship until a few weeks later. This would then coincide with the new iMac, iPad Pro and Apple TV models not shipping to customers until May 21, a little more than a month after they were announced at Apple’s Spring Loaded event on April 20.
The new MacBook Pro models are each said to feature a brighter mini-LED display, an improved version of the M1 chip, and a new design with a flatter top and bottom. The new notebooks are also expected to bring back some ports that Apple removed from the MacBook Pro in 2016, including an HDMI port, SD card slot and magnetic charging port. Rumors also say that the Touch Bar will be abandoned in favor of physical Fn buttons.