Should I Buy a new Apple Computer?

MacBookAir-640x457Are you thinking of buying a new Apple MacBook Pro, MacBook Air or iMac between April 2012 and July 2012?

If you are, we recommend you hold off for a couple off months to see what happens.

If you really need something now and can't afford to wait - don't.

Why?

Rumored changes in the new models are significant enough that, in our opinion, the wait is warranted. Product cycles really consist of short term feature "bumps" and longer term functionality improvements.

  • Short Term Feature Bumps: Increase in processor speed, slightly larger disk, slightly longer battery life, maybe new connectivity options such as BlueTooth 4.0
  • Longer Term Functionality: Inclusive of short term feature bumps plus switch to new display technologies, significant size/weight reductions, significant improvements in processing ability and/or endurance

While we don't really advocate holding on when there are short term feature bumps, we do advise waiting if we hear about longer term functionality improvements when we're this close to a rumored launch. This is because the longevity without too much disruption is greater and therefore more "bang for your buck" over a longer period

Why do we think this has some potential?

  • Intel is releasing new processors and chips that will provide a new bump in processing and improve power consumption (~20% more power/~20% less power)
  • Manufacturing may have geared up and has been waiting for quantities of of the new Intel chips (now shipping in quantity)
  • MacBook Pro is due for a refresh as is the iMac based on previous product cycles
  • Pictures of a rumored a new 15" MacBook Pro have been circulating for months
  • Supply of some models is now starting to extend and some retailers are starting to clear out stock

What are the rumored changes?

  • Much longer battery life based on advances made in the New iPad
  • Increased speed with new processors
  • Significant speed bumps with Sold State Disk (SSD) being included in more products
  • Potentially a higher resolution (Retina) display
  • USB 3.0 in addition to Thunderbolt
  • Portables are thinner and lighter, possibly build using the new Liquid Metal that Apple acquired when they purchased the company that makes it
  • Deeper integration with iCloud

In the past, changes in MacBook Air, MacBook Pro and iMac have, what we consider to be incremental, improvement. However, with what we are hearing about the new products, this change may be significant.

So, in the end, if you are not pressured to purchase something new over the next couple of months, it's best to hold off.

Having said that? If you need something now, Apple makes incredible products that simply work and all of them are more than adequate for the vast majority of users.