“Some folks in the media have raised the question about whether we’re committed to desktops,” Cook wrote. “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.”
No mention of whether that meant iMac or Mac Pro or both, but at the very least it’s encouraging to those of us who couldn’t live without a desktop computer.
Reading between the lines: the Mac Pro is very likely dead. To Tim Cook, the iMac is the desktop, period.
Chris Adamson notes that the statement came on the third anniversary of the last Mac Pro update.
I’ll note that Cook only calls out the 5K iMac — no mention of the Mac Pro.
He didn’t mention the Mac mini or Mac Pro. I’m sure he’s aware how long in the tooth they are, and praising them at this point would have been seen as a little ridiculous.
Interviews with people familiar with Apple’s inner workings reveal that the Mac is getting far less attention than it once did. They say the Mac team has lost clout with the famed industrial design group led by Jony Ive and the company’s software team. They also describe a lack of clear direction from senior management, departures of key people working on Mac hardware and technical challenges that have delayed the roll-out of new computers.
Four years ago at Apple’s annual developer conference, marketing chief Phil Schiller pledged to keep the computer front and center in the company’s product arsenal. “Nobody turns over their entire line as quickly and completely as we do at Apple,” Schiller said.
In the run-up to the MacBook Pro’s planned debut this year, the new battery failed a key test, according to a person familiar with the situation. Rather than delay the launch and risk missing the crucial holiday shopping season, Apple decided to revert to an older design. The change required roping in engineers from other teams to finish the job, meaning work on other Macs languished, the person said.
In another sign that the company has prioritized the iPhone, Apple re-organized its software engineering department so there’s no longer a dedicated Mac operating system team. There is now just one team, and most of the engineers are iOS first, giving the people working on the iPhone and iPad more power.
Mac fans shouldn’t hold their breath for radical new designs in 2017 though. Instead, the company is preparing modest updates: USB-C ports and a new Advanced Micro Devices Inc. graphics processor for the iMac, and minor bumps in processing power for the 12-inch MacBook and MacBook Pro. Cue the outrage.
With the UltraSharp 4K Ultra HD display (3840 x 2160), you can see each detail of every pixel without needing to zoom in. And with 6 million more pixels than Full HD and 3 million more than the MacBook Pro, you can edit images with pinpoint accuracy without worrying about blurriness or jagged lines.
The most powerful XPS laptop we’ve ever built includes the latest 7th Gen [Kaby Lake] Intel® Quad Core™ processors and an optional 4GB GeForce® GTX 1050 graphics card with the latest and greatest Pascal™ architecture, so you can blaze through your most intensive tasks.
Supports up to 32GB of memory with a bandwidth of 2133MHz, 1.3 times the speed of 1600MHz options.
Update (2016-12-21): See also: Hacker News.
Update (2016-12-22): Stephen Hackett:
None of these snapshots are due to an inherent flaw with the Mac itself, but with how Apple seemingly views it.
Update (2016-12-23): Lloyd Chambers:
Properly understood, the Bloomberg article is a damning indictment of the cultural change at Apple, at least if one admires true excellence and great (not just good enough) product design.
Apple’s working model for both hardware and software is now “ship by calendar”, not “ship by quality and excellence”.
Stay up-to-date by subscribing to the Comments RSS Feed for this post.