Tomorrow is when Apple will officially announce a handful of new products, most likely the iPad Air 2 and a new iMac sporting a Retina display. However, the new desktop all-in-one might not see an official launch until later in the year.
According to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the rumored 27-inch Retina iMac will at least begin shipping before the end of the year at some point, but didn’t provide a more specific timeline. He also notes that a 21.5-inch Retina iMac is also on the way, but that won’t see a release until early next year.
It’s been a while since we’ve heard rumors about Retina-equipped iMacs, but recent reports that sprung up over the summer reiterate that Apple will most likely announce a Retina iMac model tomorrow during its annual fall event alongside the unveiling of the iPad Air 2.
This new iMac could come with an impressive 5K display. As for what resolution we’re talking about here, it’s still rather unknown, but OS X Yosemite betas reference to several higher-resolution screens, including 6400×3600, 5760×3240, and 4096×2304 .
The new iMac could also come with a generous performance boost, with the top CPU option being an Intel Core i7-4790K, which has an impressive clock speed of 4.0GHz. However, Intel’s next-gen Broadwell processors most likely won’t be included in this iMac update and will rather wait until next year.
As for other performance improvements, the new iMac could make the switch to AMD graphics just like the new Mac Pro, instead of Nvidia graphics chips like the current iMacs.
Furthermore, while it’s said that the 27-inch iMac will get a Retina display, past rumors have suggested that the 21.5-inch model will keep the traditional 1920×1080 resolution, at least until Intel Broadwell processors are released, at which point the 21.5-inch iMac could get a Retina display. This goes along with the 2015 release that Kuo references.
As for the current non-Retina iMacs, they will stay put in the lineup as a cheaper option, and the new Retina model will simply be a higher-priced option, similar to how the Retina MacBooks were first introduced back in 2012.
It wouldn’t be surprising at all to see new iMacs announced next month during the Apple’s iPad Air 2 event, where it’s expected to announce the new iPad Air, as well as a newer iPad mini with Retina display. However, it’s also usually the time of year where Apple launches its new version of OS X, which this year will be OS X Yosemite. The company has also taken October to launch new Macs in the past, so we definitely wouldn’t be surprised to see a new iMac launch next month.
Apple already updated its iMac lineup earlier this year when the entry-level 21.5-inch model got a $200 price cut, but also saw a slight decrease in performance. However, it seems that Apple may be working on another iMac update for this year, possibly one that will be a bit more meaningful. It was a rather minor update, and the iMac line deserves a more thorough refresh for 2014.
The current entry-level 27-inch iMac sports a 3.2GHz quad-core Core i5 processor with 8GB of memory and a 1TB hard drive. There have been hardly any rumors as far as what we could expect out of a new iMac for 2014, but we wouldn’t be surprised if Apple lowered the price by $100 and tacked on some newer and faster components, although Apple has never been one to lower the price of its 27-inch iMac, so we’re merely crossing our fingers at that prospect, especially if it will come with a Retina display.
The Cupertino-based company introduced a new 21.5-inch iMac model earlier this year and moved the previous entry-level model into the mid-range position. The new entry-level variant sports a 1.4GHz dual core Intel Core i5 processor with 8GB of RAM and 500GB of storage for the price of $1,099.
This new price tag is $200 less than what the entry-level price used to be for the iMac. $1,299 used to be the required cash amount to get past the barrier to entry, but that model has now been moved into the mid-range slot. It still sports a 2.7GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with 8GB of RAM and 1TB of storage.