There’s no hiding the fact that Apple is working on a completely redesigned 16-inch MacBook Pro. While previous rumors have indicated that a release might not come until 2020, a new set of images from MacOS now suggests that it might be coming a bit sooner than expected.
French publication MacGeneration recently discovered that the MacOS Catalina 10.15.1 beta 2 contains a visual reference to the 16-inch MacBook Pro. Seen below, it reveals the icon for a MacBook model with much slimmer bezels and more room around the speakers, as compared to the current 15-inch MacBook. The overall chassis of the MacBook otherwise appears to be the same, and the wallpaper on the MacBook appears to be from Mac OS X Tiger.
The 16-inch MacBook Pro from macOS Catalina 10.15.1 beta 2 MacGeneration
It’s not clear how these images were obtained — or if they are authentic — but this could suggest that Apple has already begun testing the rumored MacBook internally with MacOS Catalina. It also would support the previous rumors from IHS Markit that Apple has already started production on the MacBook Pro 16-inch model. And, since MacOS Catalina 10.15.1 is expected for release sometime this fall, there could be the chance that the new MacBook might be coming this year instead.
In addition to the images, the model number for the 16-inch Macbook has also been claimed to been discovered, with MacGeneration citing it as MacBookPro16.1. However, as pointed out by AppleInsider, the 16,1 doesn’t really prove that a 16-inch model exists. Apple currently refers to the 15-inch MacBook Pro as 13,3.
According to other rumors, the 16-inch MacBook Pro could feature a new keyboard, ditching the older butterfly mechanism for a new scissor-switch mechanism that is supported by glass fiber. It’s also said that the 16-inch TFT-LCD panel onboard the device could be coming from LG. As for what’s powering the MacBook, it could be the 9th-gen Intel Coffee Lake-H processors. In the graphics department, the 16-inch MacBook Pro could feature AMD’s new 7nm Navi graphics chips.
Of course, the 16-inch MacBook Pro would be a costly endeavor for most consumers. Previous rumors from said that it could come in at well over $3,000. That might be worth the price to pay, as it will be something special, and the first MacBook larger than 15-inches since the 17-inch MacBook Pro in 2011.
A separate, but similar, rumor with icons spotted in iOS 13.2 beta also hinted at the existence of AirPods 3, or AirPod Pros.