Supply chain sources say all remaining Macs to receive update in coming months

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
According to one analyst's check with sources along Apple's supply chain, Apple plans to refresh the rest of its Mac lineup, which would include the MacBook, Mac Pro, Mac Mini and MacBook Air, "in upcoming months."



Analyst Shaw Wu with Sterne Agee issued a note to investors on Wednesday claiming that all Mac products that have yet to see a refresh this year are "due for refreshes" soon.



Not included on Wu's list are the MacBook Pro, which underwent a refresh in February, and the iMac, which saw a new version on Tuesday. Both products saw a transition to Intel's new Sandy Bridge processors and the addition of the new high-speed Thunderbolt input/output port.



Wu believes the MacBook refresh is especially important because the entry-level notebook represents roughly one-third of Apple's portable business, which itself has grown to 73 percent of all Mac sales. The last update for the MacBook came in May 2010.



As for the other Macs, the Mac Mini was most recently refreshed in June 2010, while the Mac Pro saw an update last July and the MacBook Air received a substantial upgrade last October. Wu sees the upcoming Mac refreshes as offsetting "a very minor cannibalistic impact" that the iPad 2 could have on Apple's Mac business.



In February, a report claimed that Apple will replace the MacBook Air's aging Core 2 Duo chip with the current Sandy Bridge processors in June.



In his note, Wu told investors that Tuesday's iMac refresh stands as "a worthy upgrade" and should help "reinvigorate" Mac's desktop business, which has declined to 27 percent of Macs shipped. Sales of Mac desktops actually dropped by 12 percent year over year last quarter, compared to 53 percent year over year growth for portable Macs.







Wu maintains a Buy rating and a price target of $445 for Apple.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 66
    tipootipoo Posts: 1,051member
    Problem with that is all of their computers are always getting updates "in coming months". Could that be more vague?



    This just in: Apple will release a new thing some time. Later, they will refresh said thing.
  • Reply 2 of 66
    djintxdjintx Posts: 454member
    In a related note, Apple also plans to introduce previously unannounced products in the future at an unspecified intervals.
  • Reply 3 of 66
    mcarlingmcarling Posts: 1,106member
    I hope the upcoming revised MacBooks don't have an internal optical brick.
  • Reply 4 of 66
    christopher126christopher126 Posts: 4,280member
    I think Stevo has been pretty clear about the laptop line. He said the MBA is the future of laptops.



    I can see a steady path towards matching the MBA's specs to that of the MBP as far as speed/pwr.



    Maybe even adding a 15" MBA.



    Essentially have two lines and then letting the sales numbers decide when to meld the two and have one line without any optical drives. Apple has a penchant for telling us when we don't need something. And more often than not, they're correct.



    Best



    PS. I have to believe that having everything made in aluminum and then to have this one MB plastic white hold over really bothers someone like Stevo. But it sounds like it is still selling well.
  • Reply 5 of 66
    mrstepmrstep Posts: 446member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DJinTX View Post


    In a related note, Apple also plans to introduce previously unannounced products in the future at an unspecified intervals.



    An unnamed source who is sometimes correct has checked with some component suppliers, and this is in fact correct! I'm definitely going to put off buying something until these other things come out - or should I wait for the second generation so they can work out the problems?
  • Reply 6 of 66
    xsuxsu Posts: 401member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mrstep View Post


    An unnamed source who is sometimes correct has checked with some component suppliers, and this is in fact correct! I'm definitely going to put off buying something until these other things come out - or should I wait for the second generation so they can work out the problems?



    Nah. You should wait for google to come up with something similar in a new version of Android. Since open is always better.
  • Reply 7 of 66
    mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 7,259member
    How about you update the chart to show three categories:



    Desktop, Portable and Embedded



    Then lets see how different the Desktop to Portable gap closes.
  • Reply 8 of 66
    moochmooch Posts: 113member
    I hope the next MacBook and MacBook pros have SIM card slots for 3G!
  • Reply 9 of 66
    shunnabunichshunnabunich Posts: 160member
    It'd make sense specifically if they want to roll out Thunderbolt ports in all their machines. Having collaborated with Intel on the spec, I'm sure they're very mindful of the peril of leaving any long-standing gaps in their own support for it at this vulnerable, early stage in its life cycle.
  • Reply 10 of 66
    dhagan4755dhagan4755 Posts: 2,150member
    I think the MacBook Airs will be revved at the WWDC in June, which means maybe they'll expand the line by adding a 15-inch model, and/or add other features like 3G.
  • Reply 11 of 66
    blowabsblowabs Posts: 70member
    AI reported last week that the new MBAs are getting the TB port. Good thing i didnt get a refurb last month...:-]........whew...........
  • Reply 12 of 66
    jonamacjonamac Posts: 384member
    The products that haven't been refreshed lately...are going to be refreshed. Tell your friends.
  • Reply 13 of 66
    acslater017acslater017 Posts: 424member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tipoo View Post


    Problem with that is all of their computers are always getting updates "in coming months". Could that be more vague?



    This just in: Apple will release a new thing some time. Later, they will refresh said thing.



    I get your point, but ultimately it just seems like you're playing with semantics. Sure, one could say that iOS 5 will launch "within days" and really mean "within 180 days" and be strictly true.



    It's not meaningless to claim that the entire Mac line will be refreshed in coming months. Perhaps it's a bit vague, but I take it to mean that within 6 months or so, every line will be refreshed. That's nothing to scoff at. That's different than saying, "everything will be refreshed within 2 years", which is a near-certainty.
  • Reply 14 of 66
    k.c.k.c. Posts: 60member
    It's so refreshing to hear that Apple is going to refresh....something.
  • Reply 15 of 66
    Why did I bookmark Apple Insider and why do I even bother looking at their posts? Hey news flash Apple will update their Mac products some time in the future to remain a competitive business. Seriously. Come on guys. You getting paid for that bit of tantalizing and insightful, unique and informative "inside" news about Apple? You need a raise.
  • Reply 16 of 66
    dobbydobby Posts: 794member
    Perhaps they want to ensure all hardware will utilise all new features in Lion.
  • Reply 17 of 66
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 12,791member
    The whole idea With rumor sites is to tell us something we don't know that might reflect future hardware from Apple. I already know updates are coming. What I want to hear is what is new in those updates.
  • Reply 18 of 66
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,217moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by acslater017 View Post


    It's not meaningless to claim that the entire Mac line will be refreshed in coming months. Perhaps it's a bit vague, but I take it to mean that within 6 months or so, every line will be refreshed. That's nothing to scoff at. That's different than saying, "everything will be refreshed within 2 years", which is a near-certainty.



    It's pretty much a near certainty for the next 6 months though. You can even predict the order fairly accurately just from the product cycles and Intel's releases.



    Last time the MBP was to be updated, AI had an article saying they would be updated in some very long timeframe but it was clear Apple would release almost immediately after Intel brought out the new chips as the update cycle had been stretched to the longest it had ever been and sure enough, the updates arrived the same week.



    The iMac chips had been out a while but didn't fit with the product refresh cycle but the refresh cycle was due after the MBP.



    It seems clear that the Mini is next, followed by the Air but I reckon Toshiba moving to 19nm NAND is going to have some impact here. If Apple can manage to get 256GB SSD blades into the Mini and Air at the entry-level, that's going to make a big difference. The Mini form factor can be reduced even further. Although it needs to have lots of storage, especially in the server model, Thunderbolt allows you to have as much fast external storage as you need, like these little guys:



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hk5KdOSjYHw



    The concern with the Mini is the inevitable downgrading to Intel-only graphics but I guess it suffices for who they intend to use the Mini. The only hope for good graphics here is if AMD or NVidia sell one of their mobile chips as a Thunderbolt add-on. They could put a 1GB 6970M in a tiny box and sell it as an add-on.



    The Macbook may get another refresh but I think its days are numbered and once the NAND gets updated and the MBA goes core-i with Thunderbolt, there's no reason to maintain the only white plastic model they have.



    I expect this refresh to happen around August/September.



    The Mac Pro refresh could come soon if they use some of the Xeon chips out now but it seems likely they will use the chips coming in Q4 2011 so I'd expect there to be a refresh for the MP in November.



    If I had to put dates on it, I'd say:



    May/June = Mini, dual core i5/i7 with Intel graphics, Thunderbolt, possibly SSD

    July/August = iPhone, if not at WWDC, same design, A5 chip

    August/September = Macbook Air, Macbook discontinued, double SSD capacity, dual core-i ULV, Intel graphics, Thunderbolt

    October/November = Mac Pro, 8-cores per CPU for high-end to reach 16-cores, 32-threads, PCI-3.0, new design, Thunderbolt

    January 2012 = Ivy Bridge, starting with MBP refresh again in Q1
  • Reply 19 of 66
    nvidia2008nvidia2008 Posts: 9,262member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    If I had to put dates on it, I'd say:



    May/June = Mini, dual core i5/i7 with Intel graphics, Thunderbolt, possibly SSD

    July/August = iPhone, if not at WWDC, same design, A5 chip

    August/September = Macbook Air, Macbook discontinued, double SSD capacity, dual core-i ULV, Intel graphics, Thunderbolt

    October/November = Mac Pro, 8-cores per CPU for high-end to reach 16-cores, 32-threads, PCI-3.0, new design, Thunderbolt

    January 2012 = Ivy Bridge, starting with MBP refresh again in Q1



    Mini gets Intel craphics [sic], maybe SSD options if they are still being used a lot for servers. MacBook unlikely to be discontinued this year. The next Mac Pro is going to be an absolute BEAST, CPU and architecture wise.



    Mah 2 cents
  • Reply 20 of 66
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    I hope the notebooks aren’t updated until after Lion is released so it has the option of coming with double-resolution displays.
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