The Mac Pro has been the neglected child of Apple’s products for years now. It was last updated way back in 2013—and pro users haven’t been happy about the way Apple has ignored it. It only got worse when Apple unveiled the MacBook Pro, a great laptop that didn’t at all have Pro users in mind. In 2017, it seemed as if Apple’s Pro products were essentially dead.
A few days ago, Apple did a very strange thing that was completely out of the ordinary for them. Speaking with only a few Apple-specific publications, Apple unveiled the news that a new Mac Pro is in the works. It was a fairly detailed interview, but here are six things we’ve learned about the new Mac Pro:
Another surprising thing in the interview that Apple did was admit that it made a bit of a misstep with the Mac Pro in the past.
“I think we designed ourselves into a bit of a thermal corner, if you will,” said Senior VP Craig Federighi. “We designed a system with the kind of GPUs that at the time we thought we needed, and that we thought we could well serve with a two GPU architecture. That that was the thermal limit we needed, or the thermal capacity we needed. But workloads didn’t materialize to fit that as broadly as we hoped.”
One of the biggest complaints about the Mac Pro was that it wasn’t able to be upgraded in any meaningful way. What you get is what you get—which isn’t exactly what you want when it comes to a desktop computer that needs the most updated specs.
The new Mac Pro will have a modular design, which means that the ability for the Mac Pro to be expanded and upgraded will have greatly improved.
We don’t know exactly what Apple has in mind, but we’re hoping that we get a Mac Pro truly worthy of the “Pro” designation, both in terms of specs and design. The trash can design was definitely unique, though I’m really curious to see what a fresh redesign from Apple could look like.
Apple discontinued its Cinema Display monitors last year without any indication that there’d be a follow up. Federighi said that bringing out a new “pro” monitor under the Apple name is important to giving people a true pro modular system. Here’s to hoping we get an 8K monitor, though we can definitely expect at least a 5K Retina Display monitor.
Photo by Flickr user Paul Hudson.
Apple has been significantly behind in anything involving VR or AR. While Google, Samsung, Facebook, Sony, Microsoft and HTC have all pushed ahead with the technology, Apple has stayed quiet, preferring to update its iPhones and focus on the Apple Watch.
While we didn’t get an official confirmation that the new Mac Pro will support VR, Federighi did mention that VR was something that the previous Mac Pro just couldn’t support. We’ll have to wait and see if Apple will actually get involved in the VR game, or merely provide enough power to make it possible.
While plenty of pro users have turned away from on Apple, professional creative tools like Final Cut and Logic will always be a staple of studios. The most recent version of Final Cut Pro in particular has been not received well by users. Hopefully, Apple is listening to its users and making adjustments accordingly.
“Both with Final Cut Pro X and Logic X, there are teams on those software products that are completely dedicated to delivering great pro software to our customers,” said Federighi. “No foot off the gas there.”
Unfortunately, we won’t be getting any of these products this year.
“We think it’s really important to create something great for our pro customers who want a Mac Pro modular system, and that’ll take longer than this year to do,” said Federighi.
However, that doesn’t necessarily mean we won’t hear any more about it. There’s a good chance that we could get a glimpse of the products either at WWDC or later this year at some other product announcement.