Apple is working on at least three updated Mac models with custom, company-built co-processors for release as soon as this year, including updated laptops and a new desktop, according to Bloomberg, quoting an unnamed “person familiar with the plan.”
So far, only two Mac lines include custom Apple processors: the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar and the iMac Pro. Piper Jaffrey senior analyst Mike Olson tells Bloomberg that by designing its own chips, Apple cuts component costs, gets an early jump on future features because it controls research and development, and keeps secrets away from frenemies such as Samsung.
Chances the rumor is true, according to the Sellers Research Group (that’s me): 100% — and we’ll see the upgrades this year.
Expect updated MacBook Pros that will still be available with the controversial Touch Bar and perhaps a revamped 12-inch MacBook with the technology (though I’d peg the chances of this at 50/50). Both the laptops and the 2018 iMac will sport the Apple T2 chip introduced in the iMac Pro, as I mention here — as will the promised revamp of the Mac Pro if it arrives in 2018.
These Macs will sport Intel processors and Apple co-processors, but, as I’ve said before, it’s just a matter of time before we still Macs powered entirely by Apple-made chips.