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The Mac mini hasn’t seen a refresh in three years, but a recent email from Apple CEO Tim Cook suggests that the company hasn’t forgotten about it.
A MacRumors reader sent off an email to Cook asking whether there was “anything in the pipeline” for the Mac mini. Cook apparently took the time to respond personally to the email, stating that — although it hasn’t seen an update — Apple still plans for the Mac mini to be “an important part of the product line going forward.”
Currently, we’re not sure exactly what that means. Cook didn’t elaborate and only added that “it is not time to share any details” about what a new Mac mini lineup would entail, or its tentative release date.
Cook’s comments do echo a previous statement from an Apple executive concerning the Mac mini’s future.
In April, Apple SVP of worldwide marketing Phill Schiller was interviewed by blogger John Grubber of Daring Fireball. During the interview, Schiller also suggested that the Mac mini isn’t being abandoned.
“I’ll say the Mac mini is an important product in our lineup, and we weren’t bringing it up because it’s more of a mix of consumer with some pro use,” Schiller told Daring Fireball. “The Mac mini remains a product in our lineup, but nothing more to say about it today.”
The Mac mini is a desktop machine sold without a mouse, keyboard or display. It’s also Apple’s most affordable computer, but the current iteration — released in 2014 — is becoming pretty outdated. The last we heard about the computer was a rumor in April via Pike’s Universum, allegedly based on information from a source close to Apple. The site claimed that the next Mac mini “won’t be so mini anymore,” but didn’t offer any other details.
Of course, even with vague information, we can safely assume that the Mac mini won’t be released this year. A 2018 announcement is much more likely, and based on that, it means that the computer could be outfitted with new Kaby Lake Refresh chips and quad-core performance.