When the MacBook Pro 16 launched in late 2019, one of its standout features was its scissor-switch Magic Keyboard. For now, it’s only available on that specific model, but a new report from DigiTimes (via 9to5Mac) suggests it could soon roll out to the MacBook Pro 13.
For years, Apple has persevered with the divisive and failure-prone butterfly keyboard. Each new year brought tweaks to the mechanism, but none were able to remedy its longstanding issues of uncomfortable key travel and questionable reliability. The Magic Keyboard managed to solve those problems in one fell swoop, making this an encouraging development for fans of the latest key mechanism.
While the report doesn’t nail down a particularly precise launch window, it suggests the updated MacBook Pro 13 could launch in the first half of 2020. When it comes to the first six months of a year, Apple traditionally launches MacBook Pro models in May (via press release) or June (at WWDC). We’d expect this latest update to come in one of those two time slots.
We’ve previously argued that, despite its many benefits (including the Magic Keyboard), most people shouldn’t buy the MacBook Pro 16. That’s because it’s Apple’s most expensive laptop, and paying over $2,000 just to get a better keyboard is a poor investment. But if Apple were to bring the Magic Keyboard — and other MacBook Pro 16 features — to its other laptops, that would make them far more accessible.
The report from DigiTimes complements an earlier report from noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who is known to have reliable sources inside Apple’s supply chain. Kuo argued in October 2019 that Apple would launch scissor switch-enabled MacBook models in either the second or third quarter of 2020. With the MacBook Pro 16 already out of the way, this could point to a MacBook Pro 13 or MacBook Air refresh (or both) coming later this year.
As well as that, Apple recently registered an upcoming MacBook with the Eurasian Economic Commission. This usually means a launch is imminent, further backing up the DigiTimes report. The filing listed a model number of A2289, which implies this may be a relative of the MacBook Pro 16 — the 16-inch device has a model number of A2141, and is the first recent MacBook Pro to have a model number beginning “A2,” suggesting the A2289 MacBook could well be a 13-inch variant of Apple’s latest laptop.
Only time will tell how accurate the DigiTimes report is, but against this backdrop of mounting evidence, it looks increasingly likely that a MacBook Pro 13 with a scissor-switch keyboard mechanism is on the way. That’ll make one of our favorite features of the MacBook Pro 16 much more accessible to Apple’s loyal Mac fans, and we can’t wait to try it out.