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Details emerge on future updates to Apple’s Mac line and the iPad Pro

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Jessica Lee Star/Digital Trends
We already know that Apple has big plans to refresh its Mac and mobile operating systems this year with the release of MacOS Sierra and iOS 10. However, there’s now word that the company intends to deliver major hardware updates to its Mac line and to the iPad Pro sooner rather than later.

The iPad Pro is set to be tweaked in order to make it more appealing to professional users, according to a report from Bloomberg. The Apple Pencil is set to become more prominent, with the ability to annotate content apparently being extended to apps like Safari, Mail, and the iMessage service.

The tablet’s display is also set to undergo a couple of important changes, both in terms of new technology that will allow for faster scrolling and zooming, and a size increase from the current 9.7-inch screen to a 10.5-inch replacement. Both the hardware and software updates for the iPad Pro are expected to hit in 2017.

It’s been strongly rumored for some time that the next iteration of the MacBook Pro will feature an OLED touch bar in place of the standard function keys. Bloomberg’s anonymous source has offered up some details on what sort of functionality can be expected from the new component.

Examples given include search tools and a shortcut for defining words that will be displayed while Safari is active, and controls for editing clips that would appear when iMovie is in use. Volume controls and a switch to revert back to the standard function keys will be on hand at all times.

There’s also an indication that Apple plans to release a new standalone monitor, having discontinued its last remaining display in June. The company apparently will collaborate with LG on a monitor with a 5K resolution.

The Mac line will also see refreshed versions of the iMac and the MacBook Air. It’s expected that some of these hardware updates could head to retail before the end of 2016, so there could even be a reveal at Apple’s iPhone-centric media event on September 7.

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