When Apple launched the Mac Pro in 2013, it was largely received positive reviews from the press. However, it’s been four years since we’ve seen a new model being launched in the market. Looks like Apple has plans to revamp the Mac Pro and is looking to give the desktop PC a new lease of life.
In an interview to BuzzFeed News, Apple’s SVP of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller said that the company is “completely rethinking the Mac Pro”. Schiller continued: “Since the Mac Pro is a modular system, we are also doing a pro display. There’s a team working hard on it right now”. In addition to the new Mac Pro, Apple is also working on developing a pro-level display.
Unfortunately, the new Mac Pro and a pro-level display are not coming anytime soon – not in 2017, at least: “You won’t see any of these products this year”, Schiller revealed.
One of the core problems with the Mac Pro was its lack of upgradeability. No doubt the design was popular, improving the hardware proved really difficult. “We made something bold that we thought would be great … and what we discovered is that it was great for some and not others — enough so, that we realized we had to take another path … and look for the next answer,” Schiller said.
Apple’s Craig Federighi, SVP of Software Engineering admits that the current Mac Pro isn’t exactly the best machine due to the lack of upgradibility. “We designed ourselves into a bit of a corner. We wanted to do something bold and different. What we didn’t appreciate completely at the time was how we had so tailored that design to a specific vision that in the future we would find ourselves a bit boxed in — into a circular shape.”
It’s not exactly clear how Apple plans to improve the next-generation Mac Pro but John Terns, Apple’s VP of hardware engineering, said that they will look at a more flexible design. Commenting on the current Mac Pro, Terns said: “It served its purpose well,” he said. “It just doesn’t have the flexibility we now know we need to have.”
In the meantime, the current Mac Pro gets a spec bump. Starting today, the $2,999 model now has 6 Xeon CPU cores, up from 4, and dual AMD G500 GPUs, up from AMD G300 GPUs. The $3,999 model now has 8 CPU cores, up from 6, and dual AMD D800 GPUs, up from AMD D500 GPUs.
Apple is also planning to upgrade the iMac All-in-One (AIO) desktop computer. “We have big plans for the iMac,” Phil Schiller, Apple’s SVP of worldwide marketing, said during a recent reporter roundtable at the company’s Machine Shop hardware prototyping lab. Apple also revealed to John Gruber of Daring Fireball that the company has plans to make the iMac specifically with the pro customer in mind.”
Apple didn’t share any more details about the “iMac Pro”. But Schiller did say that the new iMacs won’t have a touchscreen.
“Touch doesn’t even register on the list of things pro users are interested in talking about. They’re interested in things like performance and storage and expandability.”