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Well, it’s been over four years now since we’ve seen any major upgrades to Apple’s 13 and 15-inch MacBook Pro line. And, although the pressure on Apple to deliver a considerable update continues to mount, this morning we’re finally getting a dose of good news that the Cupertino-company is, indeed, planning a major refresh to its MacBook Pro line this year. So major, as a matter of fact, that the next MacBook Pros — according to well-connected inside sources — will feature a generous upgrade of technologies, in addition to an all-new, sleek and slim form factor.
The news comes to us courtesy of the historically accurate and well-connected KGI securities analyst, Ming Chi Kuo. In a research not to investors, Kuo noted that Apple is projected to be releasing the refreshed MacBooks, which are slated to feature a slew of technological upgrades — including a slimmer, lighter shell, Touch ID fingerprint recognition capability, an “OLED display touch bar,” and more — later on in the 4th quarter of 2016.
Emphasizing that the forthcoming upgrades will feature a drastically revamped form factor, Kuo noted, in particular, that Apple’s impending MacBook Pro refresh will include a number of iOS-specific technologies — including, most notably, Touch ID fingerprint readers.
If Kuo’s predictions ultimately turn out to be true, the implementation of a Touch ID sensor in Apple’s MacBook Pro line will mark the first time an iOS-only feature has made its way into Apple’s extended family of hardware devices.
Additionally, Kuo noted that the forthcoming MacBook Pros will reportedly feature an “OLED display touch bar” — which, as an illuminated row of touch sensitive keys, will replace the current string of function keys that are located at the top of MacBook’s QWERTY keyboard.
A slew of recent Apple patents have suggested that the OLED touch bar, (or simply “illuminated, touch sensitive keys”) would soon be coming to Apple’s Mac family — so, if Kuo’s prediction ultimately pans out to be true, it’ll definitely be interesting to see how the Cupertino-company ultimately integrates the feature. For what it’s worth, Apple also owns patents pertaining to fully-fledged touch sensitive QWERTY keyboards and illuminated trackpads, however we doubt that anything this dramatic will end up making its way into the impending MacBook Pro refresh.
Regardless, and perhaps most surprisingly of all, these many welcomed updates will reportedly be packed into considerably thinner, lighter 13 and 15-inch aluminum shells — which are slated to feature connectivity options ranging from USB-C, to Thunderbolt. In order to keep the flagship notebooks thin, Apple will reportedly employ the same tiered-butterfly component design that was originally introduced in last year’s 12-inch MacBook.
What remains to be seen, at this point, is if Apple has plans to ditch its legacy MagSafe adapter — as was the case with its current, 12-inch MacBook. However, regardless, the forthcoming MacBooks will feature USB-C connectivity, as well as a boost to Thunderbolt 3.
Hopefully we’ll catch a glimpse of the future MacBook Pros at Apple’s World-Wide Developer Conference next month, but, if not, at least we can rest in certainty knowing that they’re on the way!
What are your thoughts about the new MacBooks slated for release later this year? Are you planning on picking one up? Let us know in the comments!
Featured Photo Copyright: alexey_boldin
[The information provided in this article has NOT been confirmed by Apple and may be speculation. Provided details may not be factual. Take all rumors, tech or otherwise, with a grain of salt.]