Apple CEO Tim Cook says the company’s commitment to desktop Mac computers remains strong, despite a glaring omission of the product line in a slate of recent MacBook announcements. Cook’s comments on the matter were posted to Apple’s internal employee message board, which were then obtained and verified by TechCrunch today.
Here’s what Cook had to say in response to a question about whether Mac desktops were strategic for Apple:
The desktop is very strategic for us. It’s unique compared to the notebook because you can pack a lot more performance in a desktop — the largest screens, the most memory and storage, a greater variety of I/O, and fastest performance. So there are many different reasons why desktops are really important, and in some cases critical, to people.
The current generation iMac is the best desktop we have ever made and its beautiful Retina 5K display is the best desktop display in the world.
Some folks in the media have raised the question about whether we’re committed to desktops. If there’s any doubt about that with our teams, let me be very clear: we have great desktops in our roadmap. Nobody should worry about that.
It’s unclear if Cook is referencing just the company’s iMac all-in-one line, or if he also intended his statement to include the Mac mini and the Mac Pro. But the lack of updates to all three is a genuine concern for fans of Apple’s desktop computers.
The Mac mini was updated nearly every year from 2007 to 2012, and then once in 2014. Meanwhile, the Mac Pro was updated nearly every year from 2006 to 2013. That machine hasn’t received an upgrade in more than three years, when Apple first revealed its overhauled cylindrical design. The star of the desktop line — the iMac — is more up to date. Its current iteration has been upgraded annually for the last five years, with the 2015 model getting a 5K retina option. It too was left out in this fall’s MacBook refresh.
At some point, Apple will have to reassure customers that its machines are worthy of being placed at your desk, hooked up to a monitor, and — in some cases — used for serious work. That’s especially true now that Microsoft’s Surface Studio PC is a real contender for the art-focused creative crowd that used to call the Mac its primary home.