Will We See a New Mac Pro?
Today on Macworld’s Weekly Podcast (episode #358) the discussion turned to the Mac Pro. Dan Moren suggested that MacBooks may get refreshed but the big question is the Mac Pro. Yes! the Mac Pro. Architosh has already mentioned this possibility and suggested evidence of a new Mac Pro to be introduced at WWDC but let’s delve into some new ideas expressed in the podcast.
Re-Inventing the Mac Pro
It hasn’t been updated in forever and professionals developers and pro users are wondering deeply if the company cares enough about them to produce a new super-machine. Why? Because pro users care deeply about performance and in many cases a maxed out machine is worth every penny. This includes animation and rendering, CAD, video, high-end photography post-processing, science and engineering and many other roles–including developing software itself. Take a look at Apple’s own Mac Pro performance charts–they include Xcode.
Dan Frakes commented in the podcast that he believes that Apple may reinvent what a Mac Pro is. “Developers want a powerful box that they can keep for years and years and keep upgrading,” said Frakes.
He expressed a different vision for a Mac Pro, one tuned for the modern age a bit and one tuned to what Apple has been doing with favoring new forms of expansion, the use of SSDs, the elimination of optical drives and the Thunderbolt. Frakes, who is senior editor at Macworld, suggested there is a new middle position somewhere between where iMacs leave off and where the old Mac Pros exist. A place that still provides some expandability yet offers a lower price point.
To listen to the podcast on what may be coming at WWDC next week go here.
Frakes idea that there is this new possible definition of what a professional Mac is is interesting. The implication is that a new Mac Pro might be much smaller and less expensive to make. This would require a dramatic overhaul to what a tower or “expandable” desktop computer is all about. That is certainly a job well suited to Jony Ives at Apple, who, if anyone could do it, he could reinvent the tower computer. And perhaps it would no longer be a tower.