About a week ago, renowned Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities claimed Apple would be introducing the next generation of its high-end MacBook Pro lineup in the fourth quarter of the current year, with a thinner build and a completely new, touch-sensitive OLED display bar with integrated Touch ID above the keyboard.
It seems Kuo might be on point yet again, as leaked photos of what appears to be the upcoming 13-inch MacBook Pro fall right in line with the analyst’s claims. The photos, allegedly leaked by “one of Apple’s manufacturing partners in China,” show a display-less chassis of the device with an empty strip in place of the function key row at the top of the keyboard. This slot is said to serve as the housing for the aforementioned OLED touch panel, which might also include the much-rumored Touch ID sensor.
Visible along the top of the chassis on either side of the keyboard are speaker grills. Side views of the chassis reveal a total of four USB-C ports (two on each side) and a headphone jack. The form factor doesn’t appear to be much slimmer than that of older models, though without a side-by-side comparison, it is hard to tell if it is any thinner at all.
Oddly absent from the photos is the coveted microSD card slot and MagSafe connector. The photos do not capture the chassis from every angle, so it is possible both ports have been shifted to the rear of the device.
Another possibility, one that seasoned MacBook Pro users would hate to consider, is that Apple is planning to do away with one or both ports, just like how it is on 12-inch MacBook. Hope that is not the case, though I wouldn’t discount it just yet, seeing as much of the rumors circling around Apple’s next iPhone duo suggest the company is on the hunt for ports it deems unnecessary or replaceable. I would suggest the Cupertino giant go at the pace of one port-murder a year, though.
Apple’s next 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro models were initially rumored for a debut at this year’s WWDC, which is just a couple weeks away, but if Kuo’s claims are to be believed, our questions regarding the future of the company’s high-end notebook lineup won’t be answered before Q4.
(Source: Cult of Mac)