Apple's Thunderbolt Display is now vintage as rumors swirl of new model

Thunderbolt Display
Thunderbolt Display (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple has added the Thunderbolt Display to its vintage product list.
  • The company is rumored to be releasing a new external monitor soon.

Apple's beloved Thunderbolt Display and original iPad Air are now considered vintage products.

As reported by MacRumors, Apple has added the 27-inch Thunderbolt Display to the company's list of "vintage" products. It is time - products that are not sold for around five years go onto the list and the Thunderbolt Display hasn't been sold in about that time. The original iPad Air and Apple Cinema Display are also now vintage products.

The 2013 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Pro models have also now been moved to the obsolete list, meaning they will no longer receive hardware or software support from Apple or its third-party authorized repair partners.

The Thunderbolt Display was today added to Apple's list of vintage and obsolete products, which are part of a support document on obtaining service for an Apple product after a warranty expires. Products are considered vintage when it's between five and seven years since Apple stopped distributing them for sale.Apple introduced the Thunderbolt Display in 2011, but never shipped updated models. It was discontinued on June 23, 2016, with no successor to follow. Apple in 2017 debuted LG UltraFine displays made in partnership with LG, but for many years, there was no Apple-designed display available.In addition to adding the Thunderbolt Display to the vintage list, Apple has also included the original iPad Air, which was first released in 2013 and discontinued in 2016, and the 27-inch Apple Cinema Display, discontinued in 2014. The 2013 11 and 13-inch MacBook Pro models were moved from the vintage list to the obsolete list, which means repairs are no longer available.

It's interesting to see the Thunderbolt Display join the vintage product list at this time since Apple is actually rumored to be working on a new external display that could see a debut sometime this year. The only external display that the company currently makes is the Pro Display XDR so a more consumer-friendly model would be a welcome sight.

According to a recent report from Bloomberg, the new monitor would be a more basic external display that doesn't have the brightness or contrast ratio featured in the company's high-end monitor.

Finally, displays. The $4999 Apple Pro Display XDR is out of the range of most people, but the now-discontinued $999 Thunderbolt Display was a different story. Bloomberg says we're going to get something to replace the display that was killed off in 2016."The cheaper monitor would feature a screen geared more for consumer than professional use and wouldn't have the brightness and contrast ratio of the top-tier offering. Apple last launched a consumer-grade monitor called the Thunderbolt Display in 2011 for $999 but discontinued it in 2016."

It's currently unclear exactly when Apple may announce the new monitor. WWDC21 is right around the corner, but we're only expecting a new 14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro at most at that event.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.