New MacBook Pro Benchmarks Indicate Buyers Might Want to Hold Off

Just a month after supposed benchmarks of an updated 13-inch MacBook Pro appeared on the Geekbench performance measuring service, new postings on the website may have given users looking to buy the latest MacBook Air a reason to think twice: a new next-generation 15” MacBook Pro.

Early Tuesday, benchmarking results for a device only identified as AAPLJ45 surfaced on the site. According to those results, this machine features a quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with a speed of about 2.40 GHz, indicating that the device being benchmarked has about double the processing power of the MacBook Pro that made its debut earlier this year.

Today’s MacBook Pro only has a dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with the option to upgrade to a slightly faster Intel Core i7 for processing movies and other activities that are processor intensive.

Today's 15" Macbook Pro

Today’s 15″ Macbook Pro

As the upgraded processor is part of Intel’s new Haswell line of processors, it’s likely that users could see a huge bump in battery life. That’s key since a big part of the reason many people have clamored to buy the latest Macbook Air is battery life. Following its upgrade to the Haswell chipset, the MacBook Air boasts battery life of up to 12 hours.

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Another thing to note is the lack of discrete graphics card. While earlier reports had indicated that it was possible that the GeekBench software failed to detect the device’s graphics card due to a software error, as the processor includes Iris Pro integrated graphics is possible that this MacBook Pro wouldn’t need one. According to Intel, the new Core i7 processor’s integrated graphics offer as much as two and a half times more performance than machines using the last version of the Core i7 processor.

So far Apple has included discrete graphics cards in all of its MacBook Pro machines, but if the company is angling to deliver the best battery life to Macbook Pro users that it possibly can, it may have decided to ditch them in upcoming versions.

The MacBook Air in the benchmark also had 16GB of RAM. The benchmarking tool isn’t able to detect screen technology. this could be a MacBook Pro that includes an ultra-sharp Retina Display that requires more power than the screens included in the MacBook Air. If Apple includes the Retina Display in this MacBook Pro, it might offset any large gains in battery life.

It’s still unclear when this updated MacBook Pro might make its debut in Apple’s lineup, however the benchmarking tool did indicate that the device is running Apple’s OS X Mavericks operating system. That software is expected to launch before the end of this calendar year.