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My hopes for the Mac in 2021: More Apple silicon, more colorful MacBooks

Macbook Air M1
Macbook Air M1 (Image credit: Daniel Bader / iMore)

Thanks to the June announcement of macOS Big Sur and Apple silicon, it was a gigantic year for Mac. No doubt, the good times will continue in 2021 as more Macs are announced that shift away from Intel processors and the next version of macOS gets announced. Here are a few things I'd like to see with Mac in 2021.

More New Beginnings

First Apple silicon iMac: The first iMac to feature an Apple SoC should arrive in the first half of next year. Long-time rumors suggest this version will feature a 23 to 24-inch display with thinner bezels than the 21.5-inch iMac it's likely to replace.

16-inch MacBook Pro Version 2: It's been over a year since Apple ditched the 15-inch MacBook Pro for a 16-inch model. In 2021, that model is also likely to get the Apple silicon treatment, but probably not until later in the year.

Finally, expect Mac Pro to become the final Mac to offer Apple silicon internals in the next 12 months. Intel-based options will probably stick around for another year, however.

Will any of these models become the best Mac of year in 2021?

Possible endings

The $5k+ iMac Pro was released in December 2017 ... and never received an update. That's either going to happen in 2021, or the product will quietly fade away. I'd suggest the latter is more likely since the current Mac Pro probably has more successfully targeted the same users since it was released a year ago.

Apple will support Intel-based Macs for many years to come. However, this year's 27-inch iMac is likely the last Intel Mac Apple plans on releasing. First launched in 2006 to replace PowerPCs, Intel-based Macs found much success. However, Apple finally realized it could do more in-house, and the Apple M1 SoC was born.

macOS 2021

If history is a guide, the successor to the feature-packed macOS Big Sur will be an incremental update, at best. Regardless, the update will almost certainly further blur the line between macOS and iPadOS. We should know in June what new plans for macOS Apple has in mind.

At least one surprise

As 2020 has shown, Apple can still keep a few secrets among the many leaks. Let's hope the new year gives us another one on the Mac front. Perhaps the new year is when a next-generation MacBook makes an appearance, or Apple finds the time to release a new 17-inch MacBook Pro. Maybe 2021 will see the arrival of colorful MacBooks in line with the hues found on the iPad Air 4 or iPhone 12.

Thoughts?

What do you want to see on Mac in 2021? Let us know in the comments below.

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.

7 Comments
  • Will we see a M1 iPad Pro? I need a new iPad and this is the year one way or another. The A12z didn't cut it but a M1 would!!!
  • Just spit-balling here, but I wouldn't think so. It seems each line of Apple silicon is geared to the requirements of a particular OS, iOS, iPadOS, MacOS, WatchOS,.... They could certainly beef up an A series. I would think they would have to add a lot of non-Mac things to an M series to support what iPad needs.
  • No, the M1 chip is Mac-specific, as Apple has said multiple times. The A chips are for iOS devices, and the M line is for more conventional computers. Regardless of what anybody might say there is no merging of iOS and MacOS. Any similarity is skin deep.
  • Maybe a complete Macbook line: 12 inch Macbook, 14 inch MBA and MBP, 16 inch MBP.
  • Thanks my take! Thanks for reading
  • The consumer products are out and we should see ‘Pro’ models soon with a stronger M2 chip (hardware accelerated Audio & more RAW video/image formats beyond a few extra cores). We’ll see new enclosures across the range with designs enabled by lower TDPs perhaps even a Mac Nano. I think the iMac Pro is the Mac Pro Apple really wanted to ship and will be their flagship Pro product. Apple will cannibalise the existing Mac Pro use cases folding them into iMac Pro, Mac Mini Pro and MacBook Pro.
  • Maybe they can bring back the G4 Cube design with a M1X and no optical disc drive.