Rumor: Next-gen MacBook to have smaller footprint, be thinner, incorporate Touch ID into power button
Date: Wednesday, August 10th, 2016, 08:03
Category: Hardware, MacBook Pro, Rumor
Some new details have begun to leak out about the next-gen MacBook Pro notebooks.
Sources have indicated that the new notebooks will have a smaller footprint than existing models, and will be thinner but not adopt the wedge shape of the MacBook Air and 12-inch MacBook. The trackpad is also slightly wider than current models. All of the info lines up with previous reports and a set of leaked shells from earlier this year.
The machines are said to already be ‘in advanced testing’ but will not launch until after the iPhone event in September, confirming earlier reports that said that the laptops were scheduled for release in quarter four.
The report also backs the rumors of an OLED touch strip replacing the function keys around the keyboard.
Instead of physical keys, a strip-like screen will present functions on an as-needed basis that fit the current task or application […] Apple’s goal with the dedicated function display is to simplify keyboard shortcuts traditionally used by experienced users. The panel will theoretically display media playback controls when iTunes is open, while it could display editing commands like cut and paste during word processing tasks, the people said. The display also allows Apple to add new buttons via software updates rather than through more expensive, slower hardware refreshes.
USB-C ports have also been noted, although there have been no details as to how many will be included on the unit.
Apple is also said to be including Touch ID, which may be combined with the power button. It’s expected that this will also allow Apple Pay to be used for online purchases from supporting websites.
Apple is said to be offering one of AMD’s Polaris GPUs as it offers the slim design and power efficiency required.
This could be a build-to-order option and it’s unclear as to whether Apple may continue to source some of its GPUs for the new MacBook Pro from Intel.
Apple is using one of AMD’s “Polaris” graphics chips because the design offers the power efficiency and thinness necessary to fit inside the slimmer Apple notebook, the person said. The new graphics card is more than 20 percent thinner than its predecessor, AMD said earlier this year. AMD declined to comment, referring inquiries to Apple.
Finally, Apple is said to be using “grey, gold and silver colors” to the next-gen MacBook Pro, although additional details regarding this remain scarce.
Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.