A new report this week, citing various sources within Apple’s Far East supply chain and published by DigiTimes, seeks to shed some additional light on previously rumored iMac Pro plans for 2017.
While iDrop News reported earlier this month that Apple may have a top-tier iMac currently in development, potentially boasting features like an incredible 8K UHD display (7680 x 4320 pixel resolution), up to 64 GB of RAM, and some iteration of discreet AMD-powered GPU chips, the DigiTimes report adds a bit of fuel to the fire — shedding some additional light on the upcoming machine’s myriad of pro-centric specifications.
Specifically, according to the report, Apple’s iMac Pro will feature a “server grade” configuration, and will thusly feature a powerful, quad-core Intel Xeon E3-1285 CPU, as few as 16 — but as many as 64 — GB of ECC RAM, and up to 2 TB of NVMe SSE Storage in addition to “the latest” discreet GPU chip from AMD, according to the report.
Apple is also rumored to have a 21.5-inch iMac model currently in the works. The 21.5-inch model and the 27-inch iMac Pro will be developed by Apple’s long-time Mac manufacturing partner, Quanta Computer.
As these specifications might suggest, Apple is gearing up to differentiate the next iMac from iMacs past, creating a machine that’s destined to further penetrate the ‘Pro’ segment of the market that Cupertino has progressively been trying to tap into in recent years. In fact, when Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, Craig Federighi, sat down earlier this month with tech industry insider, John Gruber, the former pointed out that a few new ‘pro-centric’ Mac desktops would actually be coming later on this year.
“And now you look at today’s 5K iMac,” Federighi said. “It’s incredibly powerful, and a huge fraction of what would’ve traditionally — whether it’s audio editing, video editing, graphics, arts, and so forth — that would’ve previously absolutely required the Mac Pros of old, are being well addressed by iMac.”
Apple’s own research cited how 30% of the company’s total base of Mac users have conducted their work utilizing one of Apple’s Pro apps — such as Logic Pro, or Final Cut Pro — at least once per week; while, within that 30% range, there exists an 80/20 split between MacBook Pro users, and Mac desktop users, respectively, with the iMac encompassing the latter majority of those desktop Mac sales.
An iMac Pro would certainly appeal to a much larger segment of Apple’s Pro users, many of whom flock to the company’s most powerful offerings, time and time again, due to their superior performance and long-lasting quality. And since it’s been a few years since Apple last addressed the iMac desktop in any way, the iMac Pro would certainly deliver on Tim Cook’s promise of many “great new desktops” to come.