The 2016 MacBook Pro was a device that was as revolutionary as much as it was polarizing. Packing rather outdated specs but performing at par with the best machines available on the market, the premium-priced devices attracted both acclaim and criticism from conventional users and die-hard Apple fans alike. If rumors are any indication, however, this year would be a completely different story, as the MacBook Pro 2017 is speculated to address several issues that were prevalent on the 2016 MacBook Pro.
One area where the MacBook Pro 2016 definitely lagged in was its processor. Shipping with 6th-generation Skylake chips, the MacBook Pro 2016 was quite underpowered compared to rivals that were already on the market. For the MacBook Pro 2017, however, Apple seems intent on ensuring that the upcoming flagship laptop would feature the best and latest processor that Intel has to offer, according to a TechRadar report. Thus, while the Cupertino-based tech giant took its time, it seems that 2017 would finally be the year when Apple would embrace Intel's 7th-generation Kaby Lake processors.
Switching to Kaby Lake processors would give the MacBook Pro 2017 a necessary speed boost, especially since the laptop itself is designed for professional users. After all, the MBP line has always been geared towards power users, and previous iterations of the laptop have succeeded largely in this respect. With Kaby Lake processors, Apple would not only be catching up to the competition, it would finally make the MacBook Pro 2017 a device that is worthy of its name.
The rumored Kaby Lake upgrade for the MacBook Pro 2017 also opens up the possibility of a 32GB RAM option for the upcoming devices. One of the most disappointing aspects about the 2016 MacBook Pro was the fact that its most premium configuration topped out at a modest 16GB RAM, which is adequate for conventional use but severely lacking when the device tackles professional-grade graphics-intensive applications. With a 32GB option for the MacBook Pro 2017, Apple would be able to address this issue, finally offering a noteworthy configuration for the brand's loyal power users.
Apart from the MacBook Pro 2017's Kaby Lake processor and 32GB RAM option, rumors are also high that the upcoming laptop would be packing a far superior battery pack than the 2016 model, according to a Gotta Be Mobile report. Despite promises from Apple that the 2016 MacBook Pro would last long hours away from a power outlet, complaints of poor battery life immediately saturated forums about the 2016 MacBook Pro after its release. Apple eventually addressed these problems in an update, but the current MacBook Pro's battery life still leaves much to be desired.
With the MacBook Pro 2017, Apple is expected to improve the device's power consumption. This would already be made possible by Intel's Kaby Lake processors, which consume significantly less power than the 2016 model's Skylake chips. Intel, for one, has stated that its 7th-generation chips are capable of true 4K playback for up to 9.5 hours. Since Apple is known for optimizing its product's software and hardware, the idea of the MacBook Pro 2017 having battery life that goes beyond 10 hours is very plausible.
Considering that the MacBook Pro 2017 would mostly include incremental upgrades from the 2016 model, speculations are high that the device would come with one particularly unique feature that would justify the model's release. With this in mind, speculations are high that the time might be right for Apple to debut a sharper display for its flagship laptop model.
Apple debuted the Retina display years ago when it released the iPhone 4, and since then, the Cupertino-based tech giant has remained as the standard in the industry when it comes to screen resolution. Over the years, however, Apple has seen its rivals meet and exceed its displays, and today, the MacBook Pro's Retina screens are nothing special when compared to those utilized by its rivals.
Considering that a pin-sharp display is one of the MacBook Pro's trademark features, speculations are high that the 2017 model would debut a Retina 2.0 display, a superior screen resolution that would exceed the best that the tech giant currently offers. Details about the MacBook Pro 2017's display are scarce, but speculations are high that the device might feature a 3,200x1,800 QHD+ panel, which would be a significant upgrade over the current model's 2560x1600 resolution.
Despite being seldom refreshed, the MacBook Pro is one of Apple's strongest brands, and it shows in the current-generation devices' sales. Since its launch, the laptop, even with its outdated internals, limited RAM and battery life issues, remains as one of the most competitive products in the portable computing world. With the MacBook Pro 2017, however, Apple has every chance to make its flagship laptop not only worthy of its name but worthy of its reputation as well.[Featured Image by Stephen Lam/Getty Images]