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Apple rumored to be testing new ultrathin 15-inch MacBook

post #1 of 98
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Apple is allegedly prepared to add a new thin-and-light 15-inch MacBook to its lineup in the near future, with one report claiming the company has finished development of a crucial test component.

Calling the new notebook model an extension of the MacBook Air family, Macotakara reported on Sunday that Apple is finishing up a "test phase" for the new 15-inch ultraportable. Citing an Asian source, the report said Apple has already finished development of an LCD test component for the anticipated notebook.

However, the report also noted that Apple is believed to be developing a next-generation MacBook Pro that will not have a built-in optical disc drive. The new 15-inch MacBook reportedly "seems to fill" the role of a next-generation MacBook Pro.

Whatever name the new portable Mac might take, rumors have suggested the current physical form factor of the MacBook Pro lineup will undergo a drastic redesign in 2012. For some time now it has been said that Apple will redesign its MacBook Pro lineup sometime next year.

Last week, Apple quietly updated its MacBook Pro lineup, adding slightly faster Intel Sandy Bridge processors, as well as improved AMD Radeon graphics. The new notebooks were a minor update ahead of the holiday buying season, believed to be an attempt to keep the MacBook Pro lineup competitive until a major refresh occurs next year.



Apple's future MacBooks are expected to feature Intel's next-generation Ivy Bridge processors, which are slated to arrive at some point in the first half of 2012. Intel confirmed last week that it has begun volume production of its 22nm Ivy Bridge processors, and systems powered by the new CPUs should be available in the spring of 2012.

Currently, Apple's MacBook Pro lineup comes with screen sizes of 13 inches, 15 inches and 17 inches, and all of its professional notebooks feature optical DVD disc drives. The MacBook Air is available with screen sizes of 11.6 inches and 13.3 inches, and all models feature only solid-state hard drives with no optical drive.
post #2 of 98
Will this 15 in have any sort of dedicated graphics card?? like the 15 & 17in MBP have?? If it has one then i am all for it
post #3 of 98
I've got my fingers crossed that they will keep the MacBook Pro thick enough to fit a standard 2.5" HDD inside. A 128 GB SSD for OS + apps and a large (500+ GB) HDD for files would be ideal.
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post #4 of 98
Looking to upgrade my original unibody macbook pro 15 2.4 ghz
sometime in 2012 so this would be perfect. Hoping for dual drive
capacity if they drop the optical drive. 256 SSD and 1 TB HHD would be a dream.
I wonder what the chances are they include new higher res screens with the update.

Going to be an expensive spring if the iPad 3 and the fully redesigned macbook pro
come out.
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post #5 of 98
"The new notebooks were a minor update ahead of the holiday buying season, believed to be an attempt to keep the MacBook Pro lineup competitive until a major refresh occurs next year."

Does the author believe that a 2.4GHz machine is competitive but a 2.3GHz machine is not?
post #6 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by jivebaby View Post

Looking to upgrade my original unibody macbook pro 15 2.4 ghz
sometime in 2012 so this would be perfect. Hoping for dual drive
capacity if they drop the optical drive. 256 SSD and 1 TB HHD would be a dream.
I wonder what the chances are they include new higher res screens with the update.

Going to be an expensive spring if the iPad 3 and the fully redesigned macbook pro
come out.

I have the 13 inch air and real world speed test compared my early 2011 Macbook Pro is unbelievable. Everything you do is instant and it makes the Pro seem really slow in comparison. It's about as fast as my iPad 2 and even the startup and restart times are superfast (around or less than 20 seconds) It's crazy expensive though but it's worth every penny. I think the 256gb is worth the extra 300 over the 128gb hdd and I'm considering getting a portable HDD for my Air. I really don't want to carry around too much bulk and I would love to see an affordable tb flash drive one day
post #7 of 98
I have been waiting for the 15" MBA since the redesigned 11 and 13s came out. I'm not sure it would meet my needs, but I want the option when I am ready to upgrade my CD MBP (from 2006, baby).
post #8 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

I've got my fingers crossed that they will keep the MacBook Pro thick enough to fit a standard 2.5" HDD inside. A 128 GB SSD for OS + apps and a large (500+ GB) HDD for files would be ideal.

That would be nice, if possible without too many other sacrifices. Even 64 GB of SSD would be enough if combined with a 500 GB HDD. All I'd really need on the SSD would be my OS and application files. I can live with 256 GB of SSD if that's not possible, though.

The bigger thing for me is that I hope it holds at least 8 GB of RAM. 4 is probably OK, but it just doesn't leave enough head room.

I really hope this rumor turns out to be true. My MBP is over 4 years old and I'm about ready to buy a new one. I've looked really hard at the MBAs, and the 13" is tempting, but I decided that the screen is just a bit too small, so I'd be going with an MBP if buying today. If they were to bring out a 15" MBA with Ivy Bridge, I'd buy one in a heartbeat.
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post #9 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

I've got my fingers crossed that they will keep the MacBook Pro thick enough to fit a standard 2.5" HDD inside. A 128 GB SSD for OS + apps and a large (500+ GB) HDD for files would be ideal.

I want them to ditch the HDD and optical drive to make it as thin and light as possible.

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post #10 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

I've got my fingers crossed that they will keep the MacBook Pro thick enough to fit a standard 2.5" HDD inside. A 128 GB SSD for OS + apps and a large (500+ GB) HDD for files would be ideal.

That's what I'm hoping for, though I'd be happy with a 7mm (single-platter) 2.5" HDD, which is the standard 2.5" SSD thickness. That said, you can install a 12.5mm HDD in the current MBP cases so they could remove 3mm+ at its thickest point for a nice thin and tapered MBP. Glad to see that large, unused 12.7mm ODD that takes up 5.25 inches of port-side space finally removed from these machines.
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post #11 of 98
I was seriously looking at the maxed out 13 air when it came out. Would like to have a bit more storage space than the air would afford. Hoping the 2012 macbook pro will have discrete graphics, quad core and the dual ssd/hd setup. Keep it slim and we are in business. The 13 inch pro could also be an option for me if it had a discrete graphics chip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deewin View Post

I have the 13 inch air and real world speed test compared my early 2011 Macbook Pro is unbelievable. Everything you do is instant and it makes the Pro seem really slow in comparison. It's about as fast as my iPad 2 and even the startup and restart times are superfast (around or less than 20 seconds) It's crazy expensive though but it's worth every penny. I think the 256gb is worth the extra 300 over the 128gb hdd and I'm considering getting a portable HDD for my Air. I really don't want to carry around too much bulk and I would love to see an affordable tb flash drive one day
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post #12 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

I want them to ditch the HDD and optical drive to make it as thin and light as possible.

If those are your only qualifiers then there is the MBA.
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post #13 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

That would be nice, if possible without too many other sacrifices. Even 64 GB of SSD would be enough if combined with a 500 GB HDD. All I'd really need on the SSD would be my OS and application files. I can live with 256 GB of SSD if that's not possible, though.

The bigger thing for me is that I hope it holds at least 8 GB of RAM. 4 is probably OK, but it just doesn't leave enough head room.

I really hope this rumor turns out to be true. My MBP is over 4 years old and I'm about ready to buy a new one. I've looked really hard at the MBAs, and the 13" is tempting, but I decided that the screen is just a bit too small, so I'd be going with an MBP if buying today. If they were to bring out a 15" MBA with Ivy Bridge, I'd buy one in a heartbeat.

I currently use an 80GB MLC SSD boot drive plus apps with a 1TB HDD. If I were to do that again I'd likely get a smaller but faster SLC SSD. I just don't use much of the SSD with my Home Folder on the HDD.
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post #14 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

I want them to ditch the HDD and optical drive to make it as thin and light as possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

I've got my fingers crossed that they will keep the MacBook Pro thick enough to fit a standard 2.5" HDD inside. A 128 GB SSD for OS + apps and a large (500+ GB) HDD for files would be ideal.

That's why I hope we get both a full "Air line" from 11-15" and a slimmer (but less slim) Pro line sans ODD (from 13-17"), but with all these interesting possibilities for hybrid drive systems, more GPU power and more.

This fits in with both serving general markets with the lightest, most affordable machines in their quality class and the the prosumers and pros who are more demanding, as well as keeping all present price points filled with attractive goodies. (including iPads - and other iDevices - at the lower end to meet virtually everyone computing needs and budgets)

(In this scenario the 13" Pro is the most endangered-seeming species in the two families for several reasons, including lack of case space for some of the pro-est features).

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post #15 of 98
Please make an almost perfect product perfect by adding 3G.
post #16 of 98
No DVD drive is good. Everything is going either wireless or flash drive/card. Even Steve acknowledged this in an interview at D8.
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post #17 of 98
Give me a nice GPU on the 13" model and it's an insta-buy.

But please don't take long. I don't want to miss on Arkham City or Skyrim any more than I need to \

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post #18 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

No DVD drive is good. Everything is going either wireless or flash drive/card. Even Steve acknowledged this in an interview at D8.

And if the Mac Mini had the ODD removed I assume everyone assumes the MBP redesign will be losing them, too.
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post #19 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukeskymac View Post

Give me a nice GPU on the 13" model and it's an insta-buy.

But please don't take long. I don't want to miss on Arkham City or Skyrim any more than I need to \

My guess, is that the 13" MB Pro as we know it will be retired. Anybody wanting a 13" Mac portable will have no choice but to look to the 13" MBA. My prediction is the following;

MBA lines - 11" to 15" screen, dual-core Ivy Bridge CPU & integrated GPU

MB Pro line - 15" to 17" screen, quad-core Ivy Bridge CPU & Discreet AMD GPU
post #20 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post

My guess, is that the 13" MB Pro as we know it will be retired. Anybody wanting a 13" Mac portable will have no choice but to look to the 13" MBA. My prediction is the following;

MBA lines - 11" to 15" screen, dual-core Ivy Bridge CPU & integrated GPU

MB Pro line - 15" to 17" screen, quad-core Ivy Bridge CPU & Discreet AMD GPU

That'd be a shame, the 13" mbp is the perfect size vs powered computer on the market. And I'm sure the 13" mbp is one of Apple's best selling products?
post #21 of 98
Give the 11 inch air 1GB discrete graphics and Im there.

Best Starcraft 2 device ever.

I think the 11 inch Air is the only Mac that supports the (optimal) 16:9 resolution.
post #22 of 98
The problem I'm having is that the 4Gb of ram is so clearly not enough that I doubt 8 will solve my problems; perhaps one of the techies who reads this can tell me: Is there a way to put 16 Gb in a 2010 MBPro and would a 15" MBA have the space for 16 Gb?

thanks
post #23 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deewin View Post

I have the 13 inch air and real world speed test compared my early 2011 Macbook Pro is unbelievable. Everything you do is instant and it makes the Pro seem really slow in comparison. It's about as fast as my iPad 2 and even the startup and restart times are superfast (around or less than 20 seconds) It's crazy expensive though but it's worth every penny. I think the 256gb is worth the extra 300 over the 128gb hdd and I'm considering getting a portable HDD for my Air. I really don't want to carry around too much bulk and I would love to see an affordable tb flash drive one day

I have to say... I upgraded my early 2011 MBP 13" with an OCW 128GB SSD + 8GB of RAM and it's pretty damn speedy. Start up, shut down and app open times are almost as quick as my MBA 13". I am salivating at how speedy an MBA-like MBP 15" would be, especially with a discreet graphics card. My MBP will be up so sale immediately once the specs are finalized and released!
post #24 of 98
Into this void of information about future MacBook Pros, you will project your deepest hopes and wildest dreams, and AI will post its rampant speculation. And when Apple fails to deliver everything you've imagined in the next MacBook Pro, you will label it a failure.

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post #25 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Into this void of information about future MacBook Pros, you will project your deepest hopes and wildest dreams, and AI will post its rampant speculation. And when Apple fails to deliver everything you've imagined in the next MacBook Pro, you will label it a failure.

That's how the other side of the coin for a company that is super secret about its plans, but I think it's safe bet with this silent update last week that the next MBP update will be a MBA-esque case re-design with the ODD removed.

What I think is less predictable is if the MBPs will get on-board RAM. I would wager against it, but that is one area I think Apple might be oblivious to customer wants as they push the 'PC' further into the just another CE domain.

Even less certain seems to be when the HiDPI and IPS displays will start arriving on notebooks without getting any less battery usage.
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post #26 of 98
It's about time that they ditched the optical drive. It should have been done years ago.

I have a 2007 Macbook that I still use sometimes, and I can count the number of times that I've used the optical drive on one hand. Heck, I can probably count it on one finger. If anybody needs one, then quit your whining, you are part of an extremely tiny minority, and just pick up an external drive.

If Apple is going to make super thin Macbook Pros, then what's to differentiate between the Pros and the Airs? Perhaps the two lines will merge into one.
post #27 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post

My guess, is that the 13" MB Pro as we know it will be retired. Anybody wanting a 13" Mac portable will have no choice but to look to the 13" MBA. My prediction is the following;

MBA lines - 11" to 15" screen, dual-core Ivy Bridge CPU & integrated GPU

MB Pro line - 15" to 17" screen, quad-core Ivy Bridge CPU & Discreet AMD GPU

Yes and no. I have a feeling that they will not make a 15" Air but they will make the 15" and 17" models Pro models due to the discrete graphics and extra HDD as compared to the Air line.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcsegenmd View Post

The problem I'm having is that the 4Gb of ram is so clearly not enough that I doubt 8 will solve my problems; perhaps one of the techies who reads this can tell me: Is there a way to put 16 Gb in a 2010 MBPro and would a 15" MBA have the space for 16 Gb?

thanks

Yes the Pros can take 16GB ram but its hell expensive atm.

It would just be a matter of replacing (soldering on new chips not replace modules) the ram chips from 2->4 or from 4->8 on the Air range. Unfortunately you can not do this yourself.

What i would like to see is that the 11" and 13" models stay as the base with up to 4GB ram on them.

Then the 15" and 17" Pro models you can either get 8GB or 16GB soldered onboard (8GB as base for the Pro line).

As for the HD a 128GB would suffice for most peoples needs with a 750gb HDD as secondary, with the ability to upgrade to 256GB main drives and up too 512GB SSD as secondary.

This would be super fast and portable, if they were to trim the size of the chassis to make it more "Air like" then it would mean that the 15" would weigh a fraction of the current model but with more power, thus negating the argument of the 15" is too heavy for daily carting around.
post #28 of 98
My one issue with SSD's is they have a limited re-write capacity,hopefully we can overcome this hurdle then ill spring for an MBA
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post #29 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by chabig View Post

"The new notebooks were a minor update ahead of the holiday buying season, believed to be an attempt to keep the MacBook Pro lineup competitive until a major refresh occurs next year."

Does the author believe that a 2.4GHz machine is competitive but a 2.3GHz machine is not?

Apparently yes
post #30 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcsegenmd View Post

The problem I'm having is that the 4Gb of ram is so clearly not enough that I doubt 8 will solve my problems; perhaps one of the techies who reads this can tell me: Is there a way to put 16 Gb in a 2010 MBPro and would a 15" MBA have the space for 16 Gb?

thanks

I don't believe so. I know the 2011 MBP will take 16 GB ($595), but the 2010 model is listed as maxing out at 8 (using macsales.com where I buy a lot of Mac upgrades).

It is sometimes possible to use a larger RAM upgrade than Apple's stated specs, but if that were the case, macsales would probably show 16 GB on the 2010 model. Other sites also show 8 GB as being the max for this model.
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post #31 of 98
I have the 2010 MBP 13" model and I love it. Its the entry level bottom of the line model, but here I sit typing on it, while my giant 1400 dollar PC sits idle. I am waiting to see what will happen to the 13" series in 2012 or even might consider moving to the 15" inch and retiring my tower. At this point it would be less powerful except for the video cart (maybe).
post #32 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by DerekRod View Post

My one issue with SSD's is they have a limited re-write capacity,hopefully we can overcome this hurdle then ill spring for an MBA

Any drive will eventually die. Even current SSDs will probably outlive the computer's useful life before they start to fail. If not, by the time they do they'll be cheap enough to replace with larger capacity drives anyway.
post #33 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by DerekRod View Post

My one issue with SSD's is they have a limited re-write capacity,hopefully we can overcome this hurdle then ill spring for an MBA

But what is that limit and how many folks with use it up before they would simply want to get a new computer. Last I looked it was something like 100k and that was 5 year old data.

And who knows, by the time Apple takes the pros to SSD only there could be some crazy new drives with 100 million rewrite per block
post #34 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

If those are your only qualifiers then there is the MBA.

I want dedicated graphics and high performance processor and 15". I want a MacBook Pro that is lighter and thinner because it isn't hampered by ancient spinning technology.

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post #35 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

I want dedicated graphics and high performance processor and 15". I want a MacBook Pro that is lighter and thinner because it isn't hampered by ancient spinning technology.

But what about storage capacity? I don't want to be limited to a 256GB SSD card (that I don't think is even on the market yet) that costs $500. I like my 1TB+80GB setup. My system boots in 10 seconds and apps open with a single Dock bounce. Having an SSD for booting and apps paired with an HDD for data gives you the best of both worlds for a low cost per GB.
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post #36 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcsegenmd View Post

The problem I'm having is that the 4Gb of ram is so clearly not enough that I doubt 8 will solve my problems; perhaps one of the techies who reads this can tell me: Is there a way to put 16 Gb in a 2010 MBPro and would a 15" MBA have the space for 16 Gb?

thanks

2010 model can't take above 8.

You have to understand how the Airs are constructed. Apple does not provide a retail option for 16GB (large "b" otherwise you're saying gigabits) on the macbook pros currently. This option is handled by third parties. On the macbook airs no third party ram options exist because it's soldered into the logic board.

Now if they constructed an ultra thin 15", they may go the same direction as the current air (soldered in) so it's up to Apple to decide when the option for higher ram capacity appears. In this scenario I wouldn't expect it right away (my guess is 2013 if we're talking about seeing this in a form factor similar to the air).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff2021 View Post

Will this 15 in have any sort of dedicated graphics card?? like the 15 & 17in MBP have?? If it has one then i am all for it

No one on here can answer that for you. This article is just based on rumors, and none of them have indicated anything on the status of potential gpus.
post #37 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

That's how the other side of the coin for a company that is super secret about its plans

then in that case, I'll take mine with the unobtanium case, 2TB of SSD, retina display, and backlit keyboard with massaging wrist rests.

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post #38 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

then in that case, I'll take mine with the unobtanium case, 2TB of SSD, retina display, and backlit keyboard with massaging wrist rests.

Retina Display? That's soooo 2010. I fully expect OpticNervana® in the next MBPs.
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post #39 of 98
I wonder if eventually we will no longer have need for "Laptops", but we will be using Tablets or iPad's for all our computing needs. Also if we were to need any type of optical drive we could drive share with our Desktops. If we don't have a desktop we could use a means like iCloud and the App Store to use and retrieve data. Actually I like using multi gestures on my iPad and not using a track pad on my macbook pro.

Where do you see this going? Will we be using Tablet type devices only in 10 years? Will we see one version of the MacBook Pro and three versions of the iPad?
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post #40 of 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

If those are your only qualifiers then there is the MBA.

people want a 15" MBA with 8 gigs of RAM.
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