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Rumor: Apple lining up suppliers for Retina MacBook Air, next-gen iPad

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
A pair of new reports claim Apple is gearing up to launch both a MacBook Air equipped with a Retina display, as well as a new 9.7-inch iPad with revamped touchscreen technology.

MacBook Air


The reports from Taiwanese news agencies were summarized by (1, 2) EMS One on Tuesday, and were highlighted by Macotakara.

One of the reports claims that Apple plans to launch a revamped MacBook Air with Retina display in the third quarter of 2013. It said that parts are scheduled to begin shipping in the second quarter of the calendar year.

Apple began offering high-resolution Retina displays on its MacBook Pro lineup in 2012 with redesigned, thinner hardware, though the company also continues to offer its legacy Pro designs with lower resolution screens and integrated disc drives.

Tuesday's report is the first such claim that Apple may be planning to launch new MacBook Airs with Retina displays this year. Given that the MacBook Air lineup represents Apple's most affordable notebooks starting at $999, and also that the MacBook Pros with Retina displays carried a significant premium before Apple initiated a price cut last week, Tuesday's rumor should be taken with a grain of salt, as its possible that the pricing and power capabilities for a high-resolution MacBook Air may not yet be attainable.

iPad mini


The second report filed on Tuesday reiterated claims that Apple's next-generation full-size iPad will utilize the same "GF2" display technology currently found in the 7.9-inch iPad mini, instead of the thicker glass-on-glass design featured in the current fourth-generation iPad. Apple's fifth-generation iPad is expected to feature a similar design to the current iPad mini, making it thinner and lighter.

The report claimed that Apple has begun lining up suppliers for its next iPad, with companies including Nitto Denko, TPK, and Japan Display Inc., with assembly by Apple's regular partner Foxconn. It was suggested that Wintek could lose out on iPad orders for the next-gen model.
post #2 of 26
Count me in if Apple can offer an 11.6" MacBook Air with Retina Display. I recently switched from an 11.6" Air to a 13" rMBP. I like the display, but miss the portability of the MacBook Air.
post #3 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by KPOM View Post

Count me in if Apple can offer an 11.6" MacBook Air with Retina Display. I recently switched from an 11.6" Air to a 13" rMBP. I like the display, but miss the portability of the MacBook Air.

I like your use of 'rMBP'.
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #4 of 26
Waiting for 15" MacBook Air. Retina display not needed, just more and bigger screen with less weight & cost than MacBook Pro.
post #5 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Sukalewski View Post

Waiting for 15" MacBook Air. Retina display not needed, just more and bigger screen with less weight & cost than MacBook Pro.
I can't imagine this happening. The MBA is an ultra portable laptop. A 15 inch design is by its nature not ultra portable. I've been wrong before but don't think we will see a 15 in MBA.
post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Sukalewski View Post

Waiting for 15" MacBook Air. Retina display not needed, just more and bigger screen with less weight & cost than MacBook Pro.

You'll be waiting a while for that.  Just like how I'm waiting for a 13" iPad.

If you look at the design principles behind the Macbook Air (portability, light weight, thin form factor - which comes at a cost to Processor Speed, SDD size, display quality) you'll notice that those principles are all pointing to the key factor behind the design: Portability.  Nothing about a 15" notebook computer equates to portable.

post #7 of 26
I'm wondering if apple is considering to revive the docking concept. E.g. having an iPad with a docking station containing additional flash storage, GPU and CPU power, keyboard, a display connector and a teaked OS that enables seamless transition between docked and undocked.
If I look at my usage, many tasks can be handled easily on the iPad, sometimes I miss a physical keyboard, and sometimes screen real estate and horsepower. Currently, this means I have an iPad mini to carry along and casual stuff "on the couch", a bigger iPad for some special tasks, a MBP hooked up to a Display for the rest. Feels kind of redundant somehow.
Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by WonkoTheSane View Post

I'm wondering if apple is considering to revive the docking concept. E.g. having an iPad with a docking station containing additional flash storage, GPU and CPU power, keyboard, a display connector and a teaked OS that enables seamless transition between docked and undocked.
If I look at my usage, many tasks can be handled easily on the iPad, sometimes I miss a physical keyboard, and sometimes screen real estate and horsepower. Currently, this means I have an iPad mini to carry along and casual stuff "on the couch", a bigger iPad for some special tasks, a MBP hooked up to a Display for the rest. Feels kind of redundant somehow.

When did Apple ever have a docking concept as you describe it?  They had a dock, but the only link it had was a USB for syncing.

Asus makes a tablet that does this already.  As much as I kind of agreed with you before the iPad first deputed as was still rumored.  I just can't see this happening.  I still kind of agree that with the iPad, I don't use my MBP as much as I would like.  It's now more of a server for my personal files that I don't want on the cloud or don't want to pay to store on the cloud and would rather just Wifi sync.  However, if I want to do anything in iWork suite, I'd rather use my Mac.  But for just about everything else, i'd rather use my iPad.

That all being said, right now sitting in a hotel in China with only a wired connection and no Wifi options (can't get the Airport express configured), I'm really glad I brought my Mac with me.

post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by antkm1 View Post

When did Apple ever have a docking concept as you describe it?

I think you'd have to go back to the PowerBook Duo (discontinued February 1997) and its Duo Dock expansion. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PowerBook_Duo

post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post


I like your use of 'rMBP'.

I like it too. It has become common now. Look for it as a hashtag on Twitter.

post #11 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Sukalewski View Post

Waiting for 15" MacBook Air. Retina display not needed, just more and bigger screen with less weight & cost than MacBook Pro.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ndirishfan1975 View Post


I can't imagine this happening. The MBA is an ultra portable laptop. A 15 inch design is by its nature not ultra portable. I've been wrong before but don't think we will see a 15 in MBA.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by antkm1 View Post

You'll be waiting a while for that.  Just like how I'm waiting for a 13" iPad.

If you look at the design principles behind the Macbook Air (portability, light weight, thin form factor - which comes at a cost to Processor Speed, SDD size, display quality) you'll notice that those principles are all pointing to the key factor behind the design: Portability.  Nothing about a 15" notebook computer equates to portable.

 

I disagree that 15" and MBA design are mutually exclusive. There is nothing rational in stating "nothing about a 15" notebook computer equates to portable". You are simply not qualified to draw such a distinction. Portability is as much as dimensions as it is about weight. Arguably, weight is in fact more important, since most 15" computers fit just fine in most laptop bags or backpacks, particularly if they are thin. The 13" MBA weighs 2.96 lbs. The 15" MBP weighs 5.6 lbs. The 15" rMBP weighs 4.46 lbs. Many people would find a 15" MBA that weighs around 3.5 lbs to be quite interesting.

 

It's really a question whether Apple considers that, by introducing a 15" MBA, the MBP and MBA products lines may be too convergent. In fact, the same question applies in deciding whether to release RP versions of MBA, assuming the technology issues have been overcome.

post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by KPOM View Post

Count me in if Apple can offer an 11.6" MacBook Air with Retina Display. I recently switched from an 11.6" Air to a 13" rMBP. I like the display, but miss the portability of the MacBook Air.

When they add retina to the MBA, I'm not sure what justification remains for the 13" MBP to remain a separate product.

In the 15" model, you get a faster processor, more RAM capacity, and discrete GPU. You don't get the discrete GPU in the 13", so I'm not sure there's much reason for continuing a separate line in that size.
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"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
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post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelligent View Post

 

 

 

I disagree that 15" and MBA design are mutually exclusive. There is nothing rational in stating "nothing about a 15" notebook computer equates to portable". You are simply not qualified to draw such a distinction. Portability is as much as dimensions as it is about weight. Arguably, weight is in fact more important, since most 15" computers fit just fine in most laptop bags or backpacks, particularly if they are thin. The 13" MBA weighs 2.96 lbs. The 15" MBP weighs 5.6 lbs. The 15" rMBP weighs 4.46 lbs. Many people would find a 15" MBA that weighs around 3.5 lbs to be quite interesting.

 

It's really a question whether Apple considers that, by introducing a 15" MBA, the MBP and MBA products lines may be too convergent. In fact, the same question applies in deciding whether to release RP versions of MBA, assuming the technology issues have been overcome.

What makes a person qualified to qualify portability in Laptops?  Do you need a degree?  A special Certification?  I don't think your'e qualified to determine how much a fantasy 15" MBA might weigh.  Unless your name is Jonny Ive.

 

We're just stating a pretty common opinion about what's portable.  The rMBP 15" is about as close as you're going to get for a 15" MB Air.  See post #9 for additional thoughts.

post #14 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


When they add retina to the MBA, I'm not sure what justification remains for the 13" MBP to remain a separate product.

In the 15" model, you get a faster processor, more RAM capacity, and discrete GPU. You don't get the discrete GPU in the 13", so I'm not sure there's much reason for continuing a separate line in that size.

Totally agree with you there.  I'm just surprised Apple hasn't dropped the "Air" nameplate and just call them the Macbook.  might make the distinction between the Macbook Pro and the Air clearer.  One is the basic Mac and the other the Pro version [premium].  Jobs himself said the Air was the future of the Macbook when the Air deputed.

post #15 of 26

What about the battery?

The MBA can't afford to lose battery life.

post #16 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelligent View Post

 

 

 

I disagree that 15" and MBA design are mutually exclusive. There is nothing rational in stating "nothing about a 15" notebook computer equates to portable". You are simply not qualified to draw such a distinction. Portability is as much as dimensions as it is about weight. Arguably, weight is in fact more important, since most 15" computers fit just fine in most laptop bags or backpacks, particularly if they are thin. The 13" MBA weighs 2.96 lbs. The 15" MBP weighs 5.6 lbs. The 15" rMBP weighs 4.46 lbs. Many people would find a 15" MBA that weighs around 3.5 lbs to be quite interesting.

 

It's really a question whether Apple considers that, by introducing a 15" MBA, the MBP and MBA products lines may be too convergent. In fact, the same question applies in deciding whether to release RP versions of MBA, assuming the technology issues have been overcome.

I don't believe Apple will be making a 15" Air anytime soon. I can however see the allure of a larger screen, battery and portability of such a computer.  I also don't feel it would need to have a retina display as this could be one more thing to differentiate the Air from the Pro line.

post #17 of 26

I would sell my 2011 MBA 13" and also spring for an 11" Retina MBA and a Retina iPad mini. In a heartbeat. I hope these rumors are true.

For your sake, I hope you're right.
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For your sake, I hope you're right.
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post #18 of 26
Originally Posted by brutus009 View Post
What about the battery?

The MBA can't afford to lose battery life.

 

Haswell, baby. Haswell. It will make up for any extra power drawn by the backlight/screen… and THEN some.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

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Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

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post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carthusia View Post

I would sell my 2011 MBA 13" and also spring for an 11" Retina MBA and a Retina iPad mini. In a heartbeat. I hope these rumors are true.

This. That is my dream setup, would love if it pans out before I start residency in July!

 

(Come on Haswell...)

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4GB iPod mini (2nd Gen)
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post #20 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post


I like your use of 'rMBP'.

 

I hereby nominate the retina Macbook Air by the moniker rMBA... anyone with me?  (it's better than my distant runner up - Mac RetinAir)

post #21 of 26
Originally Posted by r00fus View Post
I hereby nominate the retina Macbook Air by the moniker rMBA... anyone with me?

 

Obviously this is what it will be called.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #22 of 26

I've been waiting for the smaller MBA screen to be upgrdaded - was hoping it to be retina and larger (cut down on the wasted bezel space... maybe 12" or so).

 

I'd imagine/hope the Macbook line may end up as:

11" MBA (keep the cheapest model)

12" rMBP (same chassis as 11" MBA but retina and larger screen)

14" rMBP (13" chassis with enlarged retina screen)

16" rMPB (15" chassis with enlarged retina screen).

 

that's it. No DVD. 4 models (ignoring cpu/ram setups) instead of current 6.

post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Sukalewski View Post

Waiting for 15" MacBook Air. Retina display not needed, just more and bigger screen with less weight & cost than MacBook Pro.

I used to the think there was a good chance that Apple would offer a 15" MacBook Air.  However, the release of the thin and light Retina MacBook Pro has dashed any such hopes.

 

On the other hand, the Retina MacBook Air is just a question of timing and will depend primarily on yields.  My guess is that, with the introduction of Haswell processors, Apple will drop the old heavy and thick MacBook Pro with optical brick and offer the MacBook Air with a choice of the current displays (either at the same price or $100 cheaper than current models) or Retina displays (at a premium price).

Mac user since August 1983.
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Mac user since August 1983.
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post #24 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


When they add retina to the MBA, I'm not sure what justification remains for the 13" MBP to remain a separate product.

In the 15" model, you get a faster processor, more RAM capacity, and discrete GPU. You don't get the discrete GPU in the 13", so I'm not sure there's much reason for continuing a separate line in that size.

Compared to a 13" Retina MacBook Air, the 13" Retina MacBook Pro will have a much faster processor, probably 16GB (by then) versus 8GB of RAM, more ports, and longer battery life.

Mac user since August 1983.
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Mac user since August 1983.
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post #25 of 26
Originally Posted by cjcoops View Post

I'd imagine/hope the Macbook line may end up as:

11" MBA (keep the cheapest model)

12" rMBP (same chassis as 11" MBA but retina and larger screen)

14" rMBP (13" chassis with enlarged retina screen)

16" rMPB (15" chassis with enlarged retina screen).

 

Why in the world would they change sizes when they already have retina displays at the existing sizes? Why have an 11" and a 12"?

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjcoops View Post

I've been waiting for the smaller MBA screen to be upgrdaded - was hoping it to be retina and larger (cut down on the wasted bezel space... maybe 12" or so).

 

The biggest fallacy here is that bezel space is wasted. I'm aware that some countries have different size conventions when it comes to things like 14" notebooks.

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