Apple preps new low-cost MacBook Air with Retina display and pro-focused Mac mini

“Apple Inc. will release a new low-cost laptop and a professional-focused upgrade to the Mac mini desktop later this year, ending a drought of Mac computers that has limited sales of the company’s longest-running line of devices, according to people familiar with the plans,” Mark Gurman and Debby Wu report for Bloomberg.

“The new laptop will look similar to the current MacBook Air, but will include thinner bezels around the screen,” Gurman and Wu report. “The display, which will remain about 13-inches, will be a higher-resolution ‘Retina’ version that Apple uses on other products, the people said… The new MacBook Air will be geared toward consumers looking for a cheaper Apple computer, but also schools that often buy laptops in bulk.”

“Apple is also planning the first upgrade to the Mac mini in about four years,” Gurman and Wu report. “For this year’s model, Apple is focusing primarily on these pro users, and new storage and processor options are likely to make it more expensive than previous versions, the people said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: New Macs (likely in October, after iPhones, Apple Watches and iPad Pros arrive in September)!

And, hopefully, for that “pro-focused” Mac mini, the CPU and RAM will not be soldered to the logic board!!!

SEE ALSO:
Apple’s preparing a slew of new products for this fall – July 18, 2018

28 Comments

  1. “For this year’s model, Apple is focusing primarily on these pro users, and new storage and processor options are likely to make it more expensive than previous versions, the people said.”

    Certainly good news for Pros, may it continue …

    1. As the old saying goes, “Don’t look a gift Mac mini in the USB-C port.”

      Wait and see what happens before spewing the negativity. Also, you can still look forward to the full-size desktop Mac Pro, which should follow soon (but never soon enough, I know).

    2. There is no reason that Apple could not build a small form factor computer that meets the needs of many Pro and Prosumer customers. H-P sells the Z2 Mini Workstation that is BTO scaled from an i3 to Quad Core Xeons, has user upgradeable storage media, Nvidia GPU, wireless cards and memory.

          1. “The AppleCare Protection Plan for MacBook Pro extends hardware repair service and technical support coverage to three years from your MacBook Pro’s original date of purchase. You can only purchase the AppleCare Protection Plan while your MacBook Pro is covered under Apple’s One-Year Limited Warranty.”

            HP gives you three years at no extra cost!?!

            How comforting for Apple Pros buying a five-year old outdated model with a design flaw and problems with thermal issues. Bury it in the next plot over from the Cube.

            This is the best a trillion dollar company can do? Unbelievable …

  2. I’d like for the “pro” Mac Mini to be able to handle 4K at 60fps, so I can use it as a PLEX server/client for a 4K TV. I don’t think that should be too much to ask for. I still have a quad-core i7 Mac Mini and hopefully the new one would be a quad-core model. I’d hate to have to take a theoretical step backwards. Sometimes you just can’t trust Apple when they starting throwing around the word “pro.”

  3. I realize the Mac mini has many “pro” uses. However, this is intended to be an entry-level consumer machine. Keep the price at $499 and let the end user max it out however they want. If you want pro specs, great, but if you want this for office use and home use, give users an attractive machine at a great price. Even use a Core i3 in the thing at the low end. A Core i3 with 8 GB or RAM and 128 GB of SSD storage for $499 would be an amazing office machine and would be perfect for people who need an inexpensive desktop computer. My two cents…

    1. A professional Mac mini would not be intended as an entry-level consumer machine. And, as a result, would not start at $499. Apple clearly showed what they think of when they put together the ideas of “desktop” and “professional” together when they brought out the iMac Pro. Imagine a headless (unupgradable soldered) MacBook Pro, and you’re more in the right ballpark.

      This, like the iMac Pro will start high and go stratospheric, if you’ve got the money for it. Then, the modular Mac Pro will START their power where the iMac Pro and Mini Pro leave off and go even higher.. power AND price wise.

  4. My guess still is the new Mac mini by itself will be the basis for the new Mac Pro. Want more graphics power, add an eGPU. Want more memory, add one of the new external memory modules. Want more CPU cores, add another Mac mini to your setup. Such an approach addresses the modular form on the next Mac Pro and explains why the new Mac mini is called the Pro. Allowing for some customization when ordering allows the true Pros (not me) to get a top of the line “heart” for their new Mac Pros and allows Home Users like me to order a Mac mini to what price / options I want. Simplifies the support and logistics too.

    I love my 2012 quad-core i7 Mac mini upgraded to 16 Gb of memory and a 2 TB SSD.

    1. The thing is, though, if this report is to be believed, there’s no coverage even being considered for “Home Users”. I don’t think ANYONE is going to use the mini Pro as a media server, for example… unless money is not a concern.

      “Apple is focusing primarily on these pro users, and new storage and processor options are likely to make it more expensive than previous versions”

      This is probably the nicest thing about cost that can be said about the mini Pro, and even it says that the options will make it more expensive. I do agree with how this system may relate to the Mac Pro, though, as I think the Mac Pro may end up being whatever THIS is, plus perhaps more cores in a louder easier to cool design. I almost said “with slots”, but, as Apple said it will be “modular” and avoided using the term “upgradable”, I’m still thinking it will be modular outside the case.

  5. “And, hopefully, for that “pro-focused” Mac mini, the CPU and RAM will not be soldered to the logic board!!!”

    I don’t think there’ll be much chance of that. If they do a Macbook pro with soldered ram and ssd (the Touchbar versions) then they sure won’t do a mini without them.

  6. I wish both Apple and the many pundits would just stop with the stupid branding.

    There was a time when “Pro” meant something at Apple. That was almost a decade ago. The biggest slap in the face is when Apple chose to put the Pro label on a product that has no file system and no easy means of local file iteration/sharing/management.

    There was a time when “Air” meant something (low profile with performance and feature degradation to match). Now every Apple product is Airified.

    “Mini”, as far as I’m concerned, is identical to “Air” — not fully featured and/or limited in performance.

    Jobs famously introduced the Mac mini as a perfect entry level desktop to allow switchers to join the Mac community at a low price. Since then, the Mini has become both less user-repairable and also less cost effective compared to the competition. If Apple now intends to slap a Pro label on a mini chassis in order to trick people into paying a higher price for what must, due to sheer thermodynamics, be a low performance box, then they are even more delusional than I previously thought.

    The more Apple solders and seals, the less Pro it is. Stop the insanity, Timmy.

    1. Pro is just their new marketing term to suck even more of your money away for an additional and usually unneeded so called feature. I’ll give it to Apple, they play it well and suckers bite. Case in point: iPad Pro
      Somebody tell me what the fuck a pro iPad is?

  7. New rumors indicate that it will be called the Mac Mini Pro Invisa, it will come preloaded with every Mac app ever created, drive thousands of 8K monitors, unlimited on board flash storage and iCloud backup, millions of ports, clock speeds up to Warp 100, and come in thousands of colors and solar powered, wireless satellite networking built in.

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