Rumor: New 12-Inch Apple MacBook May Be On the Way

new macbook air

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) may soon be refreshing its MacBook product lines and implementing several hardware changes, according to an anonymous but reliable leaker in Asia, reports MacRumors. According to a recent WeiPhone.com forum post uncovered by MacRumors, the anonymous leaker claimed that Apple will soon be releasing new versions of its MacBook Air laptops. However, new versions of the MacBook Pro won’t be launched until September.

The poster also discussed the existence of a 12-inch MacBook that lacks a fan assembly and features a new type of trackpad without the typical mechanical button. As noted by MacRumors, the button-less trackpad referenced by the leaker seems to be similar to an input system described by Apple in a recently filed patent application titled, “Touch pad with force sensors and actuator feedback.”

Apple currently offers 11-inch and 13-inch versions of the MacBook Air and 13-inch and 15-inch versions of the MacBook Pro. It is unclear from the forum post where the rumored 12-inch MacBook would fit into Apple’s current MacBook product lines. However, this is not the first rumor that has emerged about a new type of 12-inch MacBook.

In a research note obtained by Apple Insider last October, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that Apple would unveil a new 12-inch version of its MacBook laptop that will combine the size advantage of the current 11-inch MacBook Air with the higher workload capability of the 13-inch MacBook Air. The 12-inch MacBook will feature an “ultra-slim clamshell form factor” and will “redefine laptop computing once again following the milestone created by the MacBook Air,” wrote the analyst.

The anonymous forum poster also confirmed the existence of Apple’s long-rumored iWatch product. Several industry analysts have predicted that Apple is working on an iWatch with multiple health-monitoring and fitness-tracking features. According to a translation provided by MacRumors, “An Apple watch device does exist but still in prototype stage, so its announcement won’t come anytime soon.”

Although the leaker didn’t provide a specific timeline for the release of the iWatch, several analysts — including DisplaySearch’s David Hsieh — have predicted that Apple will release the device sometime this year based on supply chain checks. In January, the Taiwan-based DigiTimes reported that one of Apple’s suppliers had already completed a trial manufacturing run for the iWatch’s chassis.

While the anonymous leaker’s claims can’t be independently confirmed, MacRumors noted that the author of this forum post has previously leaked information about and photos of unreleased MacBook hardware. This suggests that his information about the upcoming MacBook refreshes and the new 12-inch laptop model may indeed be accurate.

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