Last week we speculated that Apple is gradually winding its transition to the Apple Silicon platform in favor of the next generation, and that generation has already emerged in the M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pros.
To that end, there’s talk that a 27" iMac will be coming next spring. Here’s what we know:
The news comes from display analyst Ross Young from DisplaySupplyChain.com, who keeps an eye on display panel development and parts supply shipments. By keeping track of panel display orders, Young is able to get a pulse on where Apple is going down the road.
Young’s analysis indicates that Apple is ordering 27" panels used in a new iMac Pro, and those next-gen panels are similar in design to the LED panels used in the MacBook Pro, with mini-LED backlighting and a 120Hz ProMotion refresh rate.
Moreover, the iMac Pro will be driven by the M1 Pro and M1 Max processors that are also used in the latest MacBook Pros released last October.
Young also says that users waiting for OLED displays to come to the iPad and MacBooks may have to wait until at least 2023, as Apple waits to see if prices of mini LEDs will begin to drop or if they will plateau. Apple will likely move to OLEDs if there’s little movement, since OLEDs are currently cheaper than mini LEDs.
But as the newer technology matures, prices will continue to drop, and that will open the door for mini LEDs to expand into those designs sooner. Another factor that could add to the mix is the news that both Samsung and LG plan to sunset the development of conventional LED displays starting in the summer of 2022. LG Display, however, will likely continue to make them for the lower end for a few more years until mini LED designs are matured.
Either way, Young states that Apple will likely announce the 27" iMac at its spring event sometime between March 20 and June 21.
Young also predicts that based on current orders for next year, that the rumored Apple AR headset will be unlikely or available in very limited quantities. Consequently, Apple users should expect to pay a higher MSRP in the event it appears. Also, the foldable iPad isn’t due to be announced until 2023 at the earliest.