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There's never been a worse time to buy a 24-inch iMac

24-inch iMac in blue
(Image credit: Luke Filipowicz / iMore)

With the iPhone 14 event behind us, attention now turns to what Apple has planned for Mac (and iPad). Like last year, Apple's expected to hold an October event to reveal all-new MacBook Pros in the coming weeks. However, a next-generation 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro probably aren't the only new Macs that will arrive. The yet-unannounced event could also see the arrival of a next-generation 24-inch iMac. 

In other words, now is not the time to buy one of those colorful desktops. 

First introduced in April 2021, the first-generation 24-inch iMac replaced the 21.5-inch iMac. However, unlike its predecessor, it features Apple silicon (M1) inside, a completely new design, and is available in seven colors (silver, blue, green, orange, yellow, purple, and pink).

Although most of the rumors about the October event have centered on MacBook Pro upgrades, it's becoming increasingly likely, perhaps even essential, for Apple to tweak the 24-inch iMac.

Earlier this year, Apple introduced M2 chip versions of the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro, leaving the 24-inch iMac and Mac mini (2020) as the only two mainstream Macs not yet to receive a next-generation chip. These omissions should be corrected in the coming weeks. 

By the end of 2022, the Mac lineup should look like this:

  • MacBook Air (M2, 2022); MacBook Air (M1, 2020)
  • 13-inch MacBook Pro (M2, 2022)
  • 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro (M2 Pro, M2 Max) (coming soon)
  • Mac Studio (M1 Max, M1 Ultra, 2022)
  • 24-inch iMac (M2, 2022) (coming soon)
  • Mac mini (M2, 2022) (coming soon)
  • Mac Pro (2022) (coming soon)

What's happening with the 24-inch iMac?

Apple iMac 2021 in every color

(Image credit: Apple)

The current 24-inch iMac was a significant upgrade over its predecessor. Because of this, I wouldn't expect anything to change from a design perspective on the 2022 model. Inside, however, there should be some impressive updates. 

Besides a new chip (the Apple M2), the newer 24-inch iMac model will probably be available in a selection of newer colors. In addition, the unified memory (now limited to 16GB) and storage options (2TB max) should also be improved. 

The first-generation 24-inch iMac received 4 1/2 stars in our July 2021 review. At the time, Luke Filipowicz was very impressed with its new design, M1 chip, and more. However, he wasn't thrilled with its starting price ($1,299) or base unit overall.  

Like this year's MacBook Air, Apple could increase the price of the iMac, although probably no more than $100-$200. For that, you'll receive a significant update worth the wait. 

If not the 24-inch iMac ... 

Things happen, and perhaps you have no choice but to purchase a new Mac at this time. Consider the M2 MacBook Air (2022) if that's the case, our best Mac of the year, or look for a sale on the existing 24-inch iMac. Despite the age, this iMac still packs a punch and will look beautiful in any room in your home. But, if you can hold off, wait a few more weeks and get the newer model. 

We'll let you know when Apple's October event is announced. Besides new Macs, Apple will likely use the occasion to introduce new iPads and a next-generation HomePod. We could also see the first Mac Pro with Apple silicon debuting. 

Bryan M Wolfe
Staff Writer

Bryan M. Wolfe has written about technology for over a decade on various websites, including TechRadar, AppAdvice, and many more. Before this, he worked in the technology field across different industries, including healthcare and education. He’s currently iMore’s lead on all things Mac and macOS, although he also loves covering iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. Bryan enjoys watching his favorite sports teams, traveling, and driving around his teenage daughter to her latest stage show, audition, or school event in his spare time. He also keeps busy walking his black and white cocker spaniel, Izzy, and trying new coffees and liquid grapes.