Apple is reportedly working on a fancy new feature for its MacBook Pro—and it might have just leaked.
Apple-tracking site Cult of Mac claims to have received photos of the chassis in Apple’s next MacBook Pro. While at first blush the device seems to be about the same as the current models, further inspection reveals something rather interesting: An area above the keyboard that will house an organic light-emitting diode (OLED) touchbar.
According to Cult of Mac, it received the images from a person working on Apple’s supply chain in China and currently building the company’s upcoming MacBook Pros. While the images could not be verified and Apple
did not respond to a request for comment on the photos, they might be the real thing, if an earlier analyst report is any indication.
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Last week, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who is among the most accurate Apple predictors in the world, said that, after analyzing the iPhone maker’s supply chain, the next MacBook Pro will come with an OLED touchbar that would sit above the device’s keyboard. Kuo added that the MacBook Pro might also feature Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor for additional security.
That said, predicting what Apple is going to do is a notoriously hard job, given the company’s penchant for secrecy. In addition, images leak all the time of what the sources say are the real deal. In some cases, those images turn out to be fake, which means any and all image leaks should be taken with the proverbial grain of salt.
Still, Apple is expected to launch a new and improved version of its MacBook Pro this year, and adding an OLED touchbar to the top of the keyboard would represent a dramatic (and important) change. It would also help the company differentiate its high-end MacBook Pro with thinner and less-powerful MacBook and MacBook Air options.
Also following earlier reports, the images leaked to Cult of Mac show that the MacBook Pro could come with four USB-C ports, which could be used to charge the device, as well as transfer data and allow users to employ multiple monitors. The current MacBook Pros do not feature any USB-C ports.
The last MacBook Pro models were updated more than a year ago, and Apple typically delivers at least component upgrades each year. The company’s silence on MacBook Pro plans suggests something is coming soon, but whether it’ll be a big update featuring an OLED touchbar or just better processors is unknown.
But given Kuo’s report and now leaked images, it’s becoming increasingly possible that something big, like an OLED touchbar, will be coming to the MacBook Pro this year.