MacBook Pro 16 vs. MacBook Pro 14: the important differences | Digital Trends

MacBook Pro 16 vs. MacBook Pro 14: the important differences | Digital Trends

MacBooks are among the best laptops you can buy, but there are some critical differences between Apple’s two MacBook Pro models.

The 14-inch MacBook Pro is a relatively new arrival on the market, with a bigger screen size than the now-discontinued 13-inch model. The 16-inch model was a refresh of the existing MacBook Pro, but there were enough changes to call it a new laptop entirely. Both of them are worthy of being listed among the best MacBooks out there, and our review of the new M3 Max MacBook Pro 14 just confirms how great the laptops really are. The question is, which model is right for you?


Image used with permission by copyright holder

If you’ve taken a close look at the previous iterations of MacBooks, examining the new ones will reveal a few small changes. However, comparing the 14-inch to the 16-inch doesn’t uncover any massive design difference apart from the size of the notebooks.

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Both Macs feature Apple’s new flat-edge design. A few years ago, the brand slowly started to revert its products to the design it used before, and the new MacBook Pros continue that trend. This means drifting away from the curved edges we’ve all grown used to.

However, the change is pretty minimal in the new MacBooks, as the edges don’t appear sharp. The main difference is that the top half of the notebook now matches the bottom half. You could easily compare this design choice to what Apple has done with the iPhone or the iPad Pro ranges.

In terms of cooling, both Macs utilize the same heat pipe design previously used in the MacBook Pro 16. The size of the heat sink has been increased by 35% to accommodate the powerful and heat-prone components found inside. For the 16-inch Mac, this is simply the retention of a previously used technology. For the smaller 14-inch model, this is a huge upgrade.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

One thing Apple has said goodbye to with the new MacBooks is the Touch Bar. It was somewhat controversial and often left unused, so replacing it with a set of physical function keys may have been the right step for Apple.

Both laptops feature the Magic Keyboard, and whether you go with the 14-inch or the 16-inch model, the keyboard remains the same excellent version. They also benefit from an upgraded webcam, bringing much-needed 1080p quality to replace the 720p used in previous versions.  The downside of the webcam? The notch at the top of the screen — although the apps do fold neatly around it, so it doesn’t obstruct the screen. Both laptops use Apple’s outstanding Force Touch haptic touchpad, and both use all the available space on the palm rest.


While the two new Macs don’t vary much in terms of design from previous generations, they certainly do when it comes to their displays. Apple entered a new era with the release of these notebooks, upgrading their screens to utilize mini-LED technology. This applies to both models.

The use of mini-LED makes the Liquid Retina XDR displays of these new Macs brighter than ever. Around 10,000 LEDs, each smaller than 200 microns, are found within the thin, light, and colorful screens of the 14-inch and the 16-inch MacBook Pros.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Switching to mini-LEDs was a smart move by Apple. What we get here is a wider color gamut with rich, satisfyingly, vibrant shades, better contrast, and deeper blacks. These screens are essentially very close to OLEDs, but they shouldn’t suffer from the same degradation and burn-in problems that OLEDs sometimes do. They’re also incredibly bright, up to 1,600 nits when displaying high dynamic range (HDR) video. That makes them probably the best laptops around for consuming HDR content.

Both the screens are beautiful, but they’re not the same size. The new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros sport display resolutions of 3024 x 1964 and 3456 x 2234, respectively. This is an increase over the previous models. The aspect ratios are as unusual as the resolutions are, resulting in the 16-inch Mac having a 1.55:1 aspect ratio and the 14-inch having a 1.54:1.

Unusual as the sizing may be, it’s quite refreshing to see a taller screen on a laptop, and these Retina displays pack a lot of pixels to make them seem even bigger. The pixel density has been increased to 254 pixels per inch, sharpening the image and adding clarity.

As far as refresh rates go, there are no differences between the new MacBook Pros. ProMotion technology is in use here, meaning that the refresh rate is adapted to what you are currently doing. At the lowest level, you can expect a refresh rate of 24Hz, but it can go all the way up to a respectable 120Hz when necessary. This design choice will help preserve battery life while still allowing for smooth performance during gameplay and creative workflows.


Screenshot showing Apple Silicon M3 processor range.

It hasn’t been long since Apple introduced the M1 chip, switching from Intel-based systems to its own Apple silicon. To call that decision a hit would be an understatement, and things only get better from there with the introduction of the M3. The MacBook Pro 14 can now utilize the base M3, part of the move to discontinue the 13-inch MacBook Pro that used the base M1 and M2 processors. Both sizes can utilize the M3 Pro or the M3 Max chip, and they represent significant upgrades from their predecessors.

The new M3 Pro and M3 Max chips come with more cores and faster speeds. Apple’s engineers have outdone themselves with these chips, somehow combining fantastic performance with even better power consumption and good thermals. They’re fast, reliable, and great for productivity, creativity, and most other things you might want to throw their way.

Although MacBooks have never been particularly known for their gaming capabilities, these two new notebooks are even faster in a lot of titles, provided you’re not a hardcore gamer in need of a monster gaming PC — but then, not many users turn to Apple for gaming purposes anyway.

The M3 Pro and M3 Max versions available to the 14-inch and 16-inch models vary slightly. The 14-inch MacBook Pro starts at an 11-core CPU/14-core GPU M3 Pro, while the 16-inch model starts at the 12-core CPU/18-core GPU M3 Pro. At the high end, both models max out at the 16-core CPU/40-core GPU M3 Max.

That means that the 16-inch model is likely to be slightly faster than the 14-inch machine thanks to better thermals, but not by much. And by offering the base M3 processor in the 14-inch MacBook Pro, Apple was able to lower the price of entry.

Another change is that the 14-inch MacBook Pro can now access the same high-power mode as the 16-inch model when configured with the M3 Max. If you’re plugged in and don’t mind some extra heat and fan noise, this power mode offers a meaningful uptick in performance.

Screenshot showing Apple M3 performance increases.

Not everything is perfect with the new processors, however. The M3 Pro has switched up the core counts, with the 12-core M3 Pro having just six performance cores and six efficiency cores compared to the M2 Pro’s eight performance cores and four efficiency cores. And memory bandwidth has been reduced from 200 GB/s to 150 GB/s. We haven’t benchmarked the M3 Pro yet, but it remains to be seen if the base M3 Pro is all that much faster than the base M2 Pro.

Nevertheless, alongside the beastly processor and integrated graphics, we’re getting an upgrade in RAM. Both notebooks support up to 128GB of memory with the M3 Max, up to 36GB with the M3 Pro, and up to 24GB with the M3. One change is that the base M3 14-inch MacBook Pro comes with just 8GB of RAM rather than the 18GB starting point with the M3 Pro and M3 Max. There has been a bit of controversy around the introduction of an 8Gb base version of the MacBook Pro 14, with Apple claiming that 8GB is as fast as 16GB on other platforms.

That may not be true, though, and some testing has shown that 8GB might represent a bottleneck. That’s been even more controversial given that it costs $200 to upgrade the base M3 14-inch MacBook Pro to 16GB. On the other hand, the 18GB that comes with the M3 Pro and M3 Max should be sufficient for less demanding users who don’t want to splurge.

In terms of storage, the standard is 512GB for both the 14-inch and the 16-inch models. It can be upgraded if you find yourself in need of extra space for all your files. Note that the new base storage doesn’t use single-NAND memory compared to the larger SSDs that use double-NAND memory as seen in the M2 models, so there’s no performance compromise from going with the base storage.


The new MacBook Pro 14 is similar in size to the MacBook 13 that it is replacing. Measuring 15.5 mm and weighing 3.5 pounds, the notebook is thin and portable. The increase in the display size stems from the fact that Apple slimmed down the bezels and got rid of the MacBook Pro label at the bottom.

Unsurprisingly, the 16-inch Mac is larger. Measuring 16.88 mm and weighing 4.7 pounds, it’s slightly more of a burden to carry around, but the larger size is made up for by the bigger display. It’s hard to pick a winner here — only you know whether you care more about better portability or a larger screen.

For most people, the difference in sizing will not be a deal breaker one way or the other. Both notebooks are relatively easy enough to carry. According to Apple, the 14-inch MacBook Pro has worse battery life, 18 hours compared to 22 hours with the 16-inch model. That, more than the size, might affect the final decision. More on that below.


Many MacBook users have been longing for the return of the ports. At some point in 2016, Apple decided to rid its notebooks of all ports aside from USB-C. Fortunately, 2021 was when things are finally starting to return to normal, and the new notebooks sport a highly anticipated list of ports.

We got the return of MagSafe, a technology that was on the brink of being forgotten but was always very missed. MagSafe magnetically attaches the charging cable to your Mac. Should you happen to pull on the cord, the tech will detach itself as opposed to pulling your notebook toward an early demise. As an added bonus, Apple gave MagSafe a face-lift and improved the charging speeds compared to previous Macs.

Connectivity on the new 2021 Macbook Pro. SD reader, USB-C port, HDMI port.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The laptops both feature an HDMI port, several Thunderbolt 4 ports, and a full-size SD card reader, which is something we haven’t seen in a MacBook for years. Note that the base M3 14-inch MacBook Pro has just two Thunderbolt 4 ports compared to three on the other models. The ports are evenly spread across the notebook, with one or two Thunderbolts and a MagSafe on the left side, and an HDMI port, another Thunderbolt port, and the SD card reader on the right.

Note that the base M3 14-inch MacBook Pro supports just one external display, while the M3 Pro supports up to two external displays and the M3 Max supports up to four external displays. Anyone looking for the ultimate multimonitor setup should keep this in mind. Also, both laptops have been updated to Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3, so both benefit from faster wireless connectivity.

This is a definite upgrade over the previous MacBooks. There is no winner in this category, and if we had to pick one, we’d say that both the 14-inch and 16-inch Macs are winners. They feature the same set of ports, bringing some much-needed relief to Apple fans who often needed to buy extra dongles to make the most out of their notebook.

Battery life

Each of the new MacBook Pros has a different battery, but both present improvements over the previous generation.

The MacBook Pro 16-inch has a battery rated at 100 watts. Combined with the use of Apple silicon in this laptop, which has already tremendously increased battery life compared to older, Intel-based systems, we’re in for a treat.

Lifestyle image of someone using the new Macbook Pro 2021.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Compared to the previous MacBook Pro 16, the battery in this model is slightly smaller, but that has no negative impact on the battery life. Users can expect at least 22 hours during light computing.

The smaller, 14-inch MacBook Pro also features an upgrade in the battery over its 13-inch predecessor. The chassis allows for the use of a larger battery, and Apple made the most of it by installing one that’s rated at 70 watts.

When it comes to battery life on the 14-inch Mac, we can expect it to be shorter than what the 16-inch has to offer. It’s no wonder, considering that this notebook is smaller and just doesn’t have the space for a battery as large as the 16-inch. The 14-inch MacBook Pro should be able to last through around 18 hours of video playback before it’s time to plug it back in.

Laptop users know full well that you don’t always get the most out of your notebook when not connected to a source of power. Apple is out to dispel that notion with the addition of High-Power Mode. This is an optional setting, present in both laptops, that lets users boost the notebook’s performance even when it’s not connected.

On the other end of the scale, there’s the Low-Power Mode, which still lets you preserve some battery life by turning off unnecessary processes.


Not many people turn to Apple products for the price — the brand remains aware of this by pricing both notebooks higher than many competitors. While both offer excellent quality, they’re not exactly cheap. Despite that, it’s hard to deny that by using the new chips, Apple managed to make these notebooks a great value for the money.

The 14-inch MacBook Pro is slightly more expensive than the 13-inch version that it replaced. It’s difficult to complain about this, as this notebook does offer a larger display while remaining virtually the same in size. The performance that it provides is also worth the higher price tag.

If you want to get your hands on the latest MacBook Pro 14, be prepared to spend at least $1,599 for the base M3 configuration, which is the only one that offers an M3 with just eight CPU cores.

The 16-inch MacBook Pro is priced higher than the previous version. To benefit from the various improvements that it provides, customers have to spend at least $2,499.

Both the laptops can be upgraded by adding more RAM and storage, so this could drive up the price a little bit further.

The 16-inch MacBook Pro is the winner here

Photographer using the new Macbook Pro.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

We recommend the 16-inch MacBook Pro, but not by a huge margin.

This time around, more than ever, it’s difficult to pinpoint one true winner between these two MacBook Pros. This is because, in a lot of aspects, they are virtually the same.

Except for the base M3 14-inch model, both of them run on (mostly) the same chips and have stunning displays, as well as the same number of ports, the same amount of storage, and the same general design.

While both are very close, the 16-inch MacBook Pro does offer theoretically much better performance and a larger 16-inch display. In addition, it also has a longer battery life and improved airflow.

Editors’ Recommendations

The MacBook Pro is Back in Black, Now Powered with M3

The MacBook Pro is Back in Black, Now Powered with M3

Photo: Kyle Barr / Gizmodo

It’s Halloween eve, and Apple brought along a few new desktop products to bask in the dark joys of spooky season, most notably a new Space Black color for the company’s leading laptops. Gizmodo had the opportunity to trick or treat through the new M3-powered laptops and desktop PCs as the company is trying to tout their new silicon’s monstrous power in a small size.

With all the Hallows Eve theming to Apple’s latest product announcement, the company’s “Scary Fast” digital event was filled with enough dark fog, and werewolf howls, supporting a new dark Halloween costume for its MacBook Pros. The MacBook Pros maintain their 14- and 16-inch sizes, while the iMac—the last of which was released back in 2021—remains at 24 inches. There’s no 32-inch iMac this year, unfortunately.

The biggest change for the MacBook Pros is found under the hood with the upgrade from the M2 chip to the M3. Most notably, the newfangled M3 silicon supports hardware-accelerated ray tracing. It’s such an important feature that Apple wanted to show off the M3’s power with a few recent games as well as in 3D rendering.

The company chose a bare few video games to show off the capabilities of its new hardware. There was at least one major hit in the form of Baldur’s Gate III, but the company also tried to share the laptop’s capabilities with Myst and Lies of P, two games not exactly known as graphic powerhouses. Each game was running on medium to low settings except for Stray, running on high with the base M3 on iMac.

With the Max models allowing for up to 128 GB of RAM, the M3 Max could run graphics rendering software with enough wiggle room to have still around 40 GB of memory left over for other activities. We’re told the beefiest M3 chips can support up to four high quality displays at once, though we only had the chance to see it run on two.

Everything Apple Announced at Its ‘Scary Fast’ Event

Everything Apple Announced at Its ‘Scary Fast’ Event

In a not-so-spooky event on Halloween Eve, Apple revealed the details of its latest MacBook Pro and iMac desktop computers. Both lineups have been refreshed with Apple’s new M3 silicon, the company’s first 3nm process outside of the iPhone.

Apple promises significant performance leaps and energy efficiency with the M3 processor. It’s tuned especially to handle AI and machine learning, all the buzzwords of the next generation of computing. And it does it all on a chip the size of the iPhone 15 Pro’s A17 Bionic.

MacBook Pro 14-inch and 16-inch with an M3, M3 Pro, or M3 Max chip

The new MacBook Pro appears similar to last year’s models. The material is still a custom alloy with 100% recycled aluminum, which Apple made a big to-do about during the event. There’s a 14-inch and a 16-inch variant and a brand-new space black color with a dark aluminum finish that’s resistant to fingerprints. The MacOS Sonoma is what brings it to life. The 14-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,599, and the 16-inch is available for $2,499. The M3 and M3 Pro MacBooks will be available next week, while models with M3 Max will be available “later in November.”

Photo: Kyle Barr

The M3 is expected to be 60% faster than the 13-inch MacBook Pro with M1. According to Apple, it’s for students, entrepreneurs, or creators and is ideal for making models on Sketchup, interacting with SurgicalAR, or enjoying incredibly realistic shadows in games.

The M3 Pro is a 12-core CPU for users with more advanced workflows. It’s made up of six high-performance blocks, six high-efficiency cores, and 18 graphics cores–it’s about two cores more on the CPU and GPU than its predecessor and 40% faster than the 16-inch MacBook Pro with M2 Pro. Apple promises that you will feel the speeds in gameplay and graphics.

The 16-inch MacBook Pro with M3 Max is for power users. The M3 Max offers a whopping 16-core CPU, with four dedicated to efficiency for things like AI development or 3D art. According to Apple, it is 2.5 times faster than the 16-inch MacBook Pro with M1 Max. It sports two ProRes engines and can support up to three hi-res displays. You get 22 hours of battery life for portability and uninterrupted work.

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Image: Apple

If you’re switching from an older Intel-based model, you’ll experience an 11 times speedier performance with a lot less noise from the fans. With a Liquid Retina XDR display of 1,000 sustained nits and 1,600 nits of peak brightness for HDR content, the display is 20% brighter. Macs with this processor can get up to 128GB of memory for movie editing and animation.

Colorful iMacs with an M3 chip

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Image: Apple

Apple also refreshed the iMac after three years, just in time for its 25th birthday. The newly designed iMac is available in seven pretty new colors (yellow, green, orange, pink, purple, blue, and silver) with an ultra-thin 11.5-millimeter chassis, but now it’s powered by the M3 chip and is two times faster than the iMac with M1. The new iMac has a 500-nit display, a 1080p FaceTime camera, a six-speaker sound system with spatial audio, studio-quality mics, and an option to use the magic keyboard with Touch ID for secure payments and a fast log-in process. The iMac starts at $1,299 and is available for pre-order now to be shipped next week.

Apple to Sell Low-Cost 12-Inch and 13-inch MacBooks for $700 or Less

Apple to Sell Low-Cost 12-Inch and 13-inch MacBooks for $700 or Less

Apple is actively developing new 12-inch and 13-inch MacBook models for sale at a planned price point of around $700 or less, claims a rumor out of Korea.

According to the operator of news aggregator account “yeux1122” on the Naver blog, supply chain sources have “consistently” seen evidence that Apple has low-cost MacBooks in two different sizes in ongoing development.

The account’s sources suggest that while Apple has yet to fully commit to mass producing the low-cost Macs, they are now “more likely than ever” to make it to market because of a rapid fall in iPad and MacBook sales.

The latest rumor comes after Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo this week claimed that Apple is considering launching a low-cost MacBook series next year to boost ailing MacBook shipments, with a target of 8-10+ million units per year.

A DigiTimes report last month also said Apple could launch a more affordable MacBook series in late 2024 to differentiate from the company’s existing MacBook Air and Pro lines, and to help the company compete with Google’s popular Chromebook models.

The number of educational institutions that have adopted Chromebooks over the last few years has seen rapid growth, especially when compared to Apple’s iPads, sales of which have lagged in the education market.

Apple’s attention is said to be increasingly focused on the sector as a possible avenue to boosting lagging MacBook sales, and is considering offering cheaper and more compact student-friendly machines to claw back its market share. Higher-performance Chromebooks can be picked up for around $700, hence the ~$700 figure Apple is targeting, according to the latest rumor.

The Naver blog account has a mixed track record for forecasting Apple’s plans, but some of its claims last year proved to be significant. For example, in March 2022 it accurately revealed some details about the third-generation iPhone SE ahead of Apple launching the model. In October of the same year it also accurately predicted that Apple would delay the release of new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models until early 2023.

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Apple may be thinking up ways to offer laptops that are cheaper and more pared down than its existing MacBook Air line. As reported by DigiTimes (via MacRumors), industry sources are speculating Apple could be working on a lower-cost version of its MacBooks that would compete in the crowded Chromebook market.

There’s not much detail on what this device would look like, other than maintaining the usual metal casing. Otherwise, the device would use less pricy materials and components for its internals. As far as a release date goes, DigiTimes said that, since there hasn’t been much activity at major Apple suppliers like Foxconn, there’s no good reason to expect we’ll see an ultra-cheap MacBook early in 2024. That means a late 2024 release window at the earliest, if ever.

This is the first anybody’s hinted at a Apple-style Chromebook, so the lack of details isn’t too surprising. The rumor should be taken with enough salt to taste, but it does make for an interesting thought experiment. Gizmodo reached out to Apple for comment, but we did not immediately hear back.

Apple isn’t one to ape the competition without adding some trademark flourish. After all, that’s how we got the upcoming $3,500 Vision Pro headset that the Cupertino company hopes will revolutionize VR, at least for those who can afford it. Meanwhile, we’re still waiting on Apple’s iPhone SE4 for a return to cheaper iPhones, but Apple doesn’t seem too interested in the ultra-cheap market.

The tech giant has distanced itself from non-Apple-brand silicon, and it’s hard to see the company going back to it, even to establish a new ultra-cheap laptop brand. Currently, the cheapest version of the M1-powered MacBook Air starts at $999. The M2-powered MacBook Air is already considered one of the best laptop devices for its price. There’s a 15-inch version released this year plus M3-powered Airs coming down the pike. To get below $1,000, Apple would need to sacrifice quite a bit from its current design.

Chromebooks are a mainstay of school-age, simplified laptop design. We’ve seen the trend of Chromebooks shifting more toward the lower-end tier of regular laptop power with Acer even dubbing one of its latest designs a “gaming Chromebook.” Then you have non-Chromebooks also eating into the sub $1,000 category like the Microsoft Surface Laptop Go line which doesn’t run a pared down ChromeOS.

If Apple could somehow make its MacBook even more slim and pared down, any cheap laptop that could support speed and usability of Apple’s native chips and OS would have a major leg up compared to the native limitations of the Linux-based ChromeOS which mostly operates on the Chrome browser.

Apple’s jump into Chromebooks could also come at an important time for the ultra-cheap laptop market. Chromebook shipments increased dramatically during the first two years of the pandemic, but growth slowed in 2022. The Wall Street Journal reported last month that educators across the country are dealing with the empty promises of Chromebooks. Many school districts that bought thousands Chromebooks back in 2017 and 2018 are finding their devices are becoming defunct. Google ended support for 13 models this year and 51 models next year. The U.S. Public Interest Research Group begged Google to extend the lifespan of 2023’s 13 Chromebook models, but to no avail.

Apple has a relatively solid track record of supporting older hardware, but it’s unclear if these kinds of devices would meet schools’ needs. While there’s no guaranteed lifespan for many devices, the usual lifespan for OS upgrades is about five to seven years, but the company still supports security updates on devices that are no longer being actively sold. Apple no longer supports macOS 10.15 Catalina, but any 2013 MacBook Pro or later can still still technically run macOS 11, at least until Apple ends support for that OS this November.

Looking for a MacBook for school? This MacBook Air is $249 off | Digital Trends

Looking for a MacBook for school? This MacBook Air is $249 off | Digital Trends

Digital Trends

Students who want to buy a new MacBook in preparation for the new school year should check out Amazon’s offer for the Apple MacBook Air M1. From its original price of $999, the laptop is down to $750, for savings of $249. MacBook deals don’t happen often, and when they do, stock is almost always quickly sold out, and we’re sure that the same thing will happen here. If you don’t want to miss out on this bargain, you’re going to have to get one soon.

Why you should buy the Apple MacBook Air M1

Despite the presence of the Apple MacBook Air M2, the Apple MacBook Air M1 remains in our list of the best MacBooks as the lowest-price option. It’s a lightweight MacBook, but it no longer sacrifices performance for portability because of Apple’s M1 chip. The processor enables fantastic performance that holds up to this day even with the launch of the more powerful M2 chips, and because the M1 chip is so power-efficient, the Apple MacBook Air M1 doesn’t require internal fans to keep it cool. This means that the device is completely silent when you’re using it, in addition to offering a battery life of up to 18 hours on a single charge.

The Apple MacBook Air M1 features a 13.3-inch Retina display that displays sharp text and vibrant colors, the Magic Keyboard with nicely sized keycaps and sufficient travel, and a rock-solid build quality that will help the machine last for a long time with proper care. The Apple MacBook Air M1 ships with MacOS Big Sur, but you can easily upgrade it to the latest version of the operating system, MacOS Ventura.

Go back to school with a new MacBook by taking advantage of Amazon’s $249 discount for the Apple MacBook Air M1. You’ll only have to pay $750 instead of $999, but if you want to get the laptop for this price, you need to act fast because we’re pretty sure that stock is already running low. Complete the transaction to secure your own Apple MacBook Air 2020 as soon as possible, because if you take too much time to think about it, you may miss this chance to get the machine at 31% off.

Editors’ Recommendations

The Next Apple Watch Update May Be Boring as Hell, but Watch Out for 2024

The Next Apple Watch Update May Be Boring as Hell, but Watch Out for 2024

Apple is set to release its next Apple Watch Series 9 set of smartwatches, but the company is reportedly offering little to no reason for any current users to upgrade from the Series 8. Current reports suggest the best thing to do if you’re excited about the next evolution in wearables is to wait a year for the big “Series X” drop.

The Series 9 is expected to debut alongside the iPhone 15 sometime next month. We’re anticipating a few dramatic changes for the company’s signature smartphone, but according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, the Apple Watch should only see the slightest of upgrades, including a slightly faster processor and some new colors. Gurman, reporting based on unnamed company contacts, called it “the most minor upgrade” since the first Apple Watch saw the light of day in 2014.

Compare that to 2024, and apparently, things will get just a little bit spicier. The “X” models could include a new microLED display that is presumably superior to current OLED watch screens. The 2024 watch might also include blood pressure monitoring tech. Apple reportedly tried to add blood pressure monitoring into the 2021 watch, but the company’s technology reportedly hit snags so it was delayed until next year. The first major company to give us blood pressure monitoring was Samsung with its 2019 Active watch, but it was hindered by a notoriously buggy launch and required initial calibration.

The Series X will include a thinner watch case and new magnetically attached watch bands. Previous watch bands were attached with a locking mechanism, but Apple wants to use some of that extended space to increase battery space, according to Gurman. Samsung’s latest, largest-screened Galaxy Watch 6 and Watch 6 Classic include a new “quick release” strap design that makes use of the company’s more traditional watch shape. Current Apple watches have cutouts for the watch bands to snap into, and removing those cutouts could grant the company precious millimeters of room to add new components.

The new upcoming smartwatch will reportedly maintain the same size and shape as previous versions, including the 45 mm Ultra. The Apple Watch Series 7 slightly increased the screen size, but even that watch was a noted bare upgrade from previous versions. Last year’s big news was all the bells and whistles included in the $799 Apple Watch Ultra. These included an “Action” button for calling up designated apps or features, longer battery life, and all-around more premium specs.

The regular Apple Watch Series 8 included two new temperature sensors for monitoring both ambient and body heat. Otherwise, the Cupertino company advertised new software updates like ovulation cycle estimation and crash detection.

Additionally, Gurman has been the main man tracking the progress of Apple’s upcoming M3 processor. He already hinted that the base M3 chip will be packing eight CPU cores and 10 GPU cores, but now he claims 13- and 15-inch MacBook Airs should get access to a regular M3 Chip alongside new MacBook Pros. The 14- and 16-inch Pro lines as well as the Mac Studio could arrive with a more powerful M3 Max chip, while the Mac Studio and Mac Pro could contain an M3 Ultra.

So Apple is, once again, stalling progress on its Apple Watch, but its own proprietary silicon might help boost flagging laptop sales in a larger market slowdown. Perhaps Apple might finally put the Apple Watch on a two-year upgrade cycle like the company’s iPad line, but at least for now, we’ll need to deal with another year’s boring release.

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Apple Says Original 12-Inch MacBook Now Obsolete

Apple Says Original 12-Inch MacBook Now Obsolete

Apple today added the original 12-inch MacBook to its obsolete products list, meaning the laptop is no longer eligible for repairs or service at Apple Stores and Apple Authorized Service Providers.

Introduced in March 2015, the 12-inch MacBook featured a thin and light design that weighed just two pounds. With prices starting at $1,299, the original model’s standard specs including a 1.1GHz dual-core Intel Core M processor, integrated Intel HD 5300 graphics, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD.

“Apple has reinvented the notebook with the new MacBook,” said Apple’s former marketing chief Phil Schiller in a March 2015 press release. “Every component of the MacBook reveals a new innovation. From its fanless design, ultra-thin Retina display and full-size keyboard that’s 34 percent thinner, to its all-new Force Touch trackpad, versatile USB-C port and breakthrough terraced battery design, the new MacBook is the future of the notebook.”

The 12-inch MacBook was also the first MacBook model to feature Apple’s infamous butterfly switch keyboard design, which was prone to failure and eventually dropped from the entire MacBook lineup after years of complaints and lawsuits. Apple last updated the 12-inch MacBook in June 2017, and it was discontinued in July 2019.

Apple classifies a product as technologically obsolete once more than seven years have passed since the company stopped distributing it for sale. The original 12-inch MacBook was discontinued in April 2016 upon the release of a second-generation model with improved specs, so the laptop recently crossed that seven-year mark.

In addition to the original 12-inch MacBook becoming obsolete, Apple has classified the stainless steel models of the Apple Watch Series 2 as vintage. Aluminum Series 2 models were previously classified as vintage last November.

The vintage products list features devices that Apple stopped distributing for sale more than five years ago and less than seven years ago. Apple provides service and parts for vintage devices for up to seven years, or as required by law, but repairs are subject to parts availability.

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