Friday, March 10, 2017

2017 MacBook Pro Release Date, Features, Specs & Rumors

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The 2017 MacBook Pro release date may be just around the corner. Yes, the current MacBook Pro is only a couple of months old, but there are plenty of buyers eagerly waiting for the 2017 MacBook Pro update before buying.

Rumors suggest Apple will hold an April event at the new Apple Campus but don’t get too excited for a Spring MacBook Pro 2017 update just yet.

The current MacBook Pro arrived in October, but there is still more coming from Apple. Tim Cook recently told investors, “You will see us do more in the pro area,” adding that it is “very important to us.” This comes after criticism of the 2016 MacBook Pro.

We’ll set the stage for what you can expect from the 2017 Macbook Pro and what you shouldn’t expect as Apple marches forward with changes to the Pro line of computers.

After a major shift last fall pushed the 13-inch Macbook Pro without Touch Bar into the MacBook Air slot, it looks like Apple is committed to keeping a slimmer computer lineup. We expect a 2017 MacBook Pro without Touch Bar as well as two 2017 Macbook Pro Touch Bar models. Look for a 2017 MacBook 12-inch sometime this year,  but don’t hold out hope for a 2017 MacBook Air.

2017 MacBook Pro Release Date

We could see a 2017 MacBook Pro release date in the second half of the year.

We could see a 2017 MacBook Pro release date in the second half of the year.

There are certainly a lot of potential buyers who are hoping for a speedy 2017 MacBook Pro release date, but that is not what we are hearing at this stage.

The 2016 MacBook Pro is only six months old. Apple fans lost it when the company announced a new iPad after just a few months. Now imagine what would happen if the 2017 Macbook Pro release date arrived before the current model even saw the signs of spring.

Ming-Chi Kou, is one of the best sources for Apple information. In a research note shared on MacRumors, we learn that Apple may start production of the 2017 Macbook Pro in Q3. That means the new models may see production as soon as July. Kou isn’t right 100% of the time, but he is one of the best sources.

With this in mind, we have two potential 2017 MacBook Pro release date windows. First, Apple could announce the new MacBook Pro at WWDC 2017 to arrive in July. That seems somewhat unlikely, but it’s not out of hand to see new hardware come in the middle of the year. Rumors indicate Apple will announce macOS 10.13 at WWDC in June, which means we could see new features that come to the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar.

The second option would be a fall 2017 MacBook Pro release date. This seems more likely and it would come in closer to the period between new MacBook Pro models. This could happen near an iPhone 8 launch or afterward. With an update like this Apple may not use an event to announce the 2017 MacBook Pro models.

2017 MacBook Pro Specs

We expect a processor upgrade for the 2017 Macbook Pro models. Other than that, there is a good chance that we will see similar specs, though there is a chance for more RAM.

Ming-Chi Kou says that we will see Kaby Lake processors as the headline for the 2017 MacBook Pro specs. We’ve also seen code in a macOS Sierra 10.12.4 beta hint at support for Kaby Lake. Apple launched the current models with an older Skylake processor. While it is possible that Apple is building their own processors for the MacBook Pro, it’s unlikely it will be ready for this refresh.

  • Intel Kaby Lake Processors

  • Kaby Lake Integrated GPU on 13-inch and Radeon Pro GPU on 15-inch

  • 8GB and 16GB RAM Options – Non Potential for 32GB RAM Option

  • Four USB Type C Ports, Potentially USB 3.1 Gen 2

  • 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB SSD Options

We could see Apple add in support for 32GB of RAM in the 2017 MacBook Pro. This is one of the biggest complaints from professional users about the model on sale today. Apple did not offer 32GB of RAM due to power consumption, which would have hurt the battery life of the MacBook Pro.

2017 MacBook Pro Design

Expect a similar MacBook Pro design.

Expect a similar MacBook Pro design.

The 2016 MacBook Pro design is what you can expect for the 2017 MacBook Pro. Apple keeps MacBook designs around for a long time, much longer than iPhones, and it would not make sense to switch the design dramatically in such a short period.

Perhaps the biggest potential change to the 2017 MacBook Pro design would be the colors offered. You can only buy two Macbook Pro colors, but there are four color options for the MacBook. It would make sense for Apple to add in a Gold MacBook Pro and a Rose Gold MacBook Pro during the 2017 refresh.

2017 MacBook Pro Battery Life

We could see the 2017 MacBookPro battery life improve thanks to Intel Kaby Lake processors. The 2016 models arrived with complaints about poor battery life, irregular battery life and other battery problems. While Apple sorted out many of these issues, there are still some owners who see bad MacBook Pro battery life at random.

The new Kaby Lake processors are more power efficient. PCGamer reports, “Intel claims laptops with Kaby Lake processors will be able to provide up to 9.5 hours of 4K video playback.” That could shake out to better overall Macbook Pro battery life.

2017 MacBook Pro Price

Look for a very familiar 2017 MacBook Pro price.

Look for a very familiar 2017 MacBook Pro price.

The 2017 MacBook Pro price will likely be the same. We have not heard rumors yet that indicate major changes to features that would coordinate with a higher price and it is unlikely that there will be a price cut this soon. Apple just started selling the 2016 Macbook Pro for $300+ off in the refurbished store, which will remain as an option for cost-conscious buyers.

New MacBook Pro: 6 Reasons to Buy, 4 Reasons Not To

Buy for a Smaller Design & Touch Bar

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Buy for a Smaller Design & Touch Bar

One of the biggest reasons to buy the 2016 MacBook Pro is the new design. The new MacBook Pro is thinner, lighter and smaller than the one it replaces. 

Apple shaves half a pound of each of the models, shrinks the overall; size by 20 to 23% and makes them thinner without cutting battery life, performance or the screen size. 

The new models include a Touch Bar above the display on the $1,799 and up models. This allows you to touch the small display to control applications and system functions. 

When you use Apple applications and soon other applications, the Touch Bar will change so you can use it to quickly access what you want. We know you can use it for Emoji, for app functions, for quick replies and much more. 

In addition to the Touch Bar, you also get a new Force Touch trackpad that is twice as big as the trackpad on the 2015 MacBook Pro. 

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