The 12-inch MacBook is arguably Apple's most polarizing device in years. An ultrathin laptop that is full of compromises, the sleek machine traded power and usability over form and design. Even with the release of the 2016 MacBook, which featured a processor bump, numerous serious laptop users shunned the device over its lack of horsepower and massive limitations. Fortunately for the 12-inch machine, it appears that the ultraportable would finally be a serious productivity machine when its latest iteration gets released this year.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who is one of the tech industry's most reliable sources for Apple leaks and updates, has stated that the 12-inch MacBook would feature numerous updates this 2017, as stated in a MacRumors report. According to the analyst, Apple would equip the 12-inch device with an Intel Kaby Lake M-class processor, which would give the laptop a significant boost in speed. While the Intel Core M processor is inferior to the top-tier i-Class chips that are rumored for the 2017 MacBook Pro, the processors would nonetheless give this year's 12-inch MacBook a lot more power than its predecessor.
Apart from a Kaby Lake processor, Kuo also stated that the 12-inch MacBook 2017 would be fitted with 16GB of RAM, a notable improvement over the 8GB of memory that is featured in the current iteration of the machine, according to a CultofMac report. With a Core M Kaby Lake chip and 16GB of RAM, the 12-inch MacBook 2017 would most likely be able to initiate and complete tasks extremely well. Even tasks such as video editing, which were notably difficult in the 2016 MacBook, would most probably be feasible with the upcoming device.While most rumors about Apple laptops for 2017 are centered on the MacBook Pro, there have also been many notable speculations emerging about the upcoming 12-inch MacBook. Among these is the inclusion of an improved Force Touch trackpad that would be compatible with the Apple Pencil, as well as the possible debut of an LTE version of the ultraportable laptop. Other colors are also speculated to be debuting with the 12-inch MacBook 2017, such as a Jet Black or red option. The frame of the ultraportable machine, however, is speculated to be the same as the 2015 and 2016 variants.
Other rumors have also suggested that the 2017 MacBook would come with a larger, 13-inch variant. The specs of this larger unit are speculated to be comparable to the 12-inch version, though its battery life is rumored to be superior. Of course, these speculations have not been confirmed by leaks or any official announcements from the Cupertino-based tech giant. Thus, these predictions must be taken with a notable grain of salt.What has been predicted by Kuo, however, is the possible production and release date of the upcoming device. According to the noted Apple analyst, the 12-inch MacBook 2017 would start its mass production early in the second quarter of the year. Thus, while unconfirmed, there is a good chance that the 2017 MacBook is already being mass-produced. If this is indeed the case, there is a good chance that the device would be unveiled to the public sometime around June, when the 10.5-inch iPad Pro 2 is speculated to be revealed.
Kuo has stated that the shipments of MacBooks would be far more efficient this year, especially as it appears that Apple has already ironed out its alleged production problems. If this is indeed the case, the 12-inch MacBook 2017 would be available sooner than initially expected. Pricing for the 12-inch MacBook 2017 has not been announced or leaked as of date, though rumors are high that the upcoming machine would be priced at a similar price point as its predecessor.[Featured Image by Stephen Lam/Getty Images]