One of the most exciting rumors going into WWDC 2021 was that Apple would unveil the latest 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro laptops during the keynote. We were getting mixed messages from reports preceding the keynote, with some saying the redesigned MacBook Pro models would be unveiled during the press conference, while others claimed the new Pros would launch later than expected.
MacBook fans know by now that the highly anticipated MacBook Pro redesign was not shown during Apple’s big presentation on Monday. But newly found evidence suggests that Apple might have originally planned to unveil an M1X MacBook Pro during the keynote. Shortages of a key MacBook component might be the reason why Apple changed its mind.
The 2021 MacBook Pro refresh is expected to include an upgraded version of the custom M1 chip. Reports have referred to it as the M1X or M2. On top of that, the new MacBooks will have a redesigned chassis and will bring back some of the ports that Apple removed, including MagSafe charging, HDMI, and an SD card slot. The new laptops will also feature mini-LED screens like the new 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
OK OK OK
Everyone stay calm… but I just spotted these tags on Apple's YouTube livestream of the June 7 keynote!!!
APPLE CONFIRMED THE M1X!!!@jon_prosser you were right after all!!!
— Max Balzer #WWDC21 (@maxbalzer_) June 9, 2021
Apple has yet to officially announce the M1’s successor, but the company listed two unexpected tags on its YouTube recording of WWDC 2021, as seen in the tweet above. Apple listed “M1X MacBook Pro,” and “M1X” in the video’s tags. This implies that Apple had planned to announce the new laptops during the show and that the M1 successor will be called M1X.
A different explanation might be that Apple used those tags because it knew how excited people were to see the new MacBook models at WWDC 2021, and it wanted to boost viewership. However, another Twitter user observed that Apple promptly removed the tags:
They have removed it… pic.twitter.com/DxYl4iteMq
— Jonas Hendricks (@JoTecReview) June 9, 2021
Apple reportedly planned to mass-produce the 14-inch and 16-inch laptops in the second quarter of the year. But Apple pushed back the schedule because of yield issues with the mini-LED screens. This isn’t the first time that we hear manufacturing issues might impact the mini-LED production. But these reports can’t be confirmed, and Apple never discusses rumors about its supply chain.
Taken together, these new developments can explain the disparities between the various MacBook Pro rumors that preceded the keynote. At the time, we speculated that Apple might want to unveil the big MacBook Pro redesign at WWDC, but launch it in stores only much later this year, once the supply issues have been resolved.
Regardless of Apple’s launch plans for the redesigned MacBook Pro, if the tags it used on its YouTube video are based on an actual intent to announce the new product, we might know what to call Apple’s next-gen Mac processor.