Respected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has responded to the latest MacBook Pro rumors, to predict that the new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro models will enter mass production in the last quarter of this year, pointing to a fall or early winter launch.
With Apple launching its first M2-based MacBooks earlier this year — a redesigned MacBook Air and a redesigned 13-inch MacBook Pro — it’s likely that the larger Pro models will have souped-up versions of that processor, dubbed the M2 Pro and M2 Max. But Kuo warns that these chips may arrive too early to take advantage of the much-anticipated improved manufacturing processes rumored for the high-end M2 chips.
Currently, Apple’s Mac processors are based on a 5nm chip. In 2023, that is expected to move to 3nm, a switch that will lead to faster performance, better energy efficiency and longer battery life.
However, the exact timing of the transition is unknown. Many Apple watchers had expected it to coincide neatly with the launch of the M2 Pro and Max in late 2022. But as Kuo points out, Apple vendor TSMC has released guidelines that 3nm will help launch revenue in the first half of 2023. (To be precise, Anandtech reports that the company will “only ship” [3nm chips] to an undisclosed customer for Q1 2023 revenue.”) That would mean the new process will arrive with the first M3 Macs in mid to late 2023.
Echoing that pessimistic but crushing-sounding logic, Kuo thinks the M2 Pro and its siblings will still use a 5nm process. They will of course be faster than the standard M2 and the upgraded M1 chips from the previous generation, especially on the graphics side. But we may have to miss out on the more robust performance gains some analysts have predicted.
In theory, the new MacBook Pros could launch any time in the last three months of 2022 or even early 2023. In reality, though, Apple tends to avoid major launches later than Thanksgiving (with a few exceptions), and TSMC is much more likely to start making the chips in early October, ahead of a Mac-focused Apple event later that day. month. Rumor has it that a new Mac mini and Mac Pro will also be arriving at that event, along with new iPads.
For the latest information, check out our regularly updated guide to the new MacBook Pro. When the devices launch, you can find the lowest prices in our guide to the best MacBook Pro deals.