Apple Is Not Planning A 12-inch MacBook Launch In The Near, Or Distant Future

Omar Sohail
12-inch MacBook
Apple's 12-inch MacBook lineup featuring an Intel processor

The 12-inch MacBook was discontinued back in 2019, with its product life cycle lasting a good four years. Despite Apple sending a survey to current owners of the portable Mac, which may have suggested that a resurrection may be present in the company’s roadmap, the company has no intentions of bringing this particular model back to the market.

Apple does have plans to introduce a different MacBook, but it will likely be a larger MacBook Air

Looking at the current ‘fanless’ MacBook models that Apple sells at this time, the 12-inch version could have been way ahead of its time, meaning that its design could be re-used and updated slightly to make it look futuristic. Unfortunately, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman has mentioned another update in his Power On newsletter that while a bigger MacBook Air is on the cards this year, consumers should trash their hopes for the 12-inch MacBook.

“If there’s any major saving grace for the Mac lineup in 2023, it’s a planned 15-inch MacBook Air. A new 12-inch MacBook is no longer on Apple’s near-term road map however.”

Consumers that adored the portability factor of the 12-inch MacBook likely had some complaints about the product too. Firstly, there was only a single USB-C port as part of the I/O, and it did not even support the Thunderbolt standard, making it severely limited in a ton of use cases. Also, since Apple had not developed its M-series of SoCs at the time, the 12-inch MacBook featuring a passive cooling solution that dissipates heat generated by an Intel Core M processor was a recipe for disaster.

Apple’s 12-inch MacBook in the Rose Gold finish

Given how power-efficient the M1 and M2 are, the 12-inch MacBook’s fanless design could be acceptable today, but in 2015, the lack of a powerful chip limited the machine’s performance capabilities. Even if Apple went through with the design and used the M3 in this model, there was also the issue of redesigning the entire chassis to accommodate a scissor-switch keyboard instead of the butterfly one.

In short, Apple would have to invest millions in a product that it discontinued a few years ago, which only means the company’s focus is converged on newer and better products, which includes the upcoming larger MacBook Air. According to an earlier report, the display size would measure 15.5 inches diagonally, with a launch possibly happening in Spring 2023. We could see the M3 in action during this time, or Apple may re-use the M2, which now performs better in a bigger machine. We will see what Apple has cooked up for its customers in the coming months.

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