Apple's new MacBook Pro range was unveiled in October, but not everyone was happy with what the company had to offer.
While some celebrated its 'magical' Touch Bar, others derided it as a bizarre gimmick that does little to improve the user experience. Promises of superior battery life were undermined by complaints in real-world usage, which the company addressed by removing the 'remaining battery life' indicator from its OS. And given the high price of these devices, the inclusion of last-generation 'Skylake' Intel Core processors also raised some eyebrows, as did the absence of any RAM options higher than 16GB.
Nonetheless, the new MacBook Pro laptops sold faster than any before, but Apple may be preparing to address at least some of the criticisms levelled at its latest notebooks, although it could be a long wait before it finally does so.
Ming-Chi Kuo, a noted analyst from KGI Securities, has predicted a range of changes coming to the MacBook line-up in 2017. Kuo has a strong track record when it comes to revealing Apple's upcoming product plans; he accurately predicted details of the iPhone 6s ahead of its release, as well as forecasting the launch of the original iPad Pro, and that of the 4-inch iPhone SE.
According to Kuo, Apple plans to launch new 13- and 15-inch MacBook Pro models later this year, with mass production starting in the third quarter of 2017. These notebooks will have very similar specs to the most recently announced versions, but will include newer 7th-generation 'Kaby Lake' Intel Core processors. The 15-inch model is also said to include the option of 32GB of 'desktop-class' RAM, to satisfy hardcore users.
He anticipates that Apple will reduce the price of the lower-end 13-inch MacBook Pro later in the year, making it a more direct replacement to the 13-inch MacBook Air.
Kuo also said that new 12-inch MacBooks with Kaby Lake processors will enter mass production early in the second quarter of the year, and that a 16GB RAM option may be available for those devices. The current 12-inch MacBook range is limited to 8GB.
None of these predictions seem particularly 'out there', and most of them seem to be fairly logical progressions for the next models in the MacBook and MacBook Pro lines. Even so, none of these details have yet been confirmed, so we'll have to wait and see how things turn out.
Last week, Kuo also predicted that Apple will launch three iPads this year, including a new 10.5-inch model with a 'narrow bezel design'.