Next week’s Apple Event is rumored to contain new AirPods, Mac Mini, and MacBook Pro with M1X chips inside. Display industry insider Ross Young suggested this week that there’s a “100% confirmed” chance we’ll see MiniLEDs in the display panels for the MacBook Pro units that’ll appear at this event, with a few nearly-as-likely updates.
Per the analysis by Young, “panel suppliers are the same between the iPad Pro and MacBook Pro – LG Display and Sharp.” As such, Young is “expecting similar technology – oxide backplanes, miniLED backlights, and 120Hz refresh rates.” This would be a long-awaited upgrade for the MacBook Pro lineup – AKA Apples top-tier notebook brand.
What’d be even more welcome is the return of multiple USB ports, HDMI port, SD card port, and so forth. BUT given the un-ending growth in sales for the device line since Apple started releasing iterations without said ports, it’s unlikely we’ll see a return to more-than-enough-ports glory.
Instead we’ll get far more bright, colorful, energy-efficient display panels with a higher image refresh rate. This is still good news. It’s a strange situation we’re in before this release, with top-tier iPad Pro devices out in the wild with display panels that are more high-end than the most expensive MacBook Pro. That’ll likely soon be rectified.
Young also made the point clearer, saying “14” and 16″ should both have miniLEDs, oxide backplanes and 120Hz refresh.” It’s likely that if the MacBook Pro were to have a 120Hz refresh rate panel, it’d also have a variable refresh rate system, potentially tied to the High Power Mode or Pro Mode discovered in versions of MacOS over the last couple of years.
While the display panel for the MacBook Pro M1X 14 and 16-inch units may be just like the iPad Pro, it’s highly unlikely that Apple will include a touch panel. This is one area where Steve Jobs’ guarantee that the form factor needn’t change will likely stick: “Touch surfaces don’t want to be vertical.”
Apple hasn’t outright guaranteed there’ll never be a touchscreen MacBook, but it still seems highly unlikely right this minute.
Take a peek at the timeline below for more information on what’s to be expected from the next Apple event, including rumors on each of the devices that are more likely headed to official publication.