Skip to main content

The M3 MacBook Pro may launch sooner than anyone expected

Earlier this week, we learned that Apple’s next batch of Macs loaded with M3 chips could be set to launch in the fall. Today, a fresh report claims they could arrive ahead of schedule — but there are reasons to be doubtful.

The idea comes from a paywalled DigiTimes report (via MacRumors), which cites “industry sources” to claim that Apple will introduce a new MacBook Pro — complete with a 3-nanometer Apple silicon chip that will boast improved performance and efficiency — as soon as the third quarter of 2023. That quarter runs from July 1 until September 30.

Fortnite running on a Macbook M1.
Digital Trends

The MacBook Pro that DigiTimes refers to is presumably the 13-inch MacBook Pro, as this hasn’t been tweaked since 2022, whereas the 16-inch and 14-inch MacBook Pro laptops received a fresh upgrade as recently as January 2023. That makes them unlikely candidates for another update this year.

Aside from the 13-inch MacBook Pro, M3 upgrades could also be coming to the 24-inch iMac and the 13-inch MacBook Air later in 2023. That’s according to a report from journalist Mark Gurman, although DigiTimes apparently makes no mention of these devices.

An unusual release date

The 13-inch MacBook Pro, viewed at an angle from the back.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

There is a potential problem with DigiTimes’ timeline, however. Given the Apple events that are expected this year — and the company’s longstanding custom of launching new Macs after new iPhones in the fall — a third-quarter launch for the MacBook Pro seems unlikely.

Apple is widely expected to launch its iPhone 15 and Apple Watch Series 9 lineup at a September event, as is the company’s tradition. Macs usually follow behind that, either in October or November. It’s very unusual for new MacBooks to launch in the third quarter, suggesting you should take DigiTimes’ claim with a dose of skepticism.

Yet it’s not totally unknown for Apple to unveil a new MacBook in the third quarter. After all, the M2 MacBook Air was revealed in July 2022, while both the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro were updated in July 2019. That means we can’t quite rule out the DigiTimes report entirely.

Whatever the case, it would be worth keeping an eye on the moves Apple makes during this year’s third quarter. You never know, the next generation of MacBook Pro laptops may be here before you know it.

Editors' Recommendations

Alex Blake
In ancient times, people like Alex would have been shunned for their nerdy ways and strange opinions on cheese. Today, he…
Why Apple’s M3 Ultra could be an absolute monster
Apple Mac Studio top down angled view showing side and rear.

There's one M3 chip left to complete the rollout of Apple's latest line of Mac chips -- the M3 Ultra. It'll likely get announced at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), but some new rumors are pointing to a very different chip than the M2 Ultra or M1 Ultra.

A new post on X from Apple commentator and YouTuber Vadim Yuryev indicates that the M3 Ultra will be designed as a completely standalone chip, rather than two M3 Max chips stitched together.

Read more
The case for buying the M2 MacBook Air over the M3 model
The screen of the MacBook Air M2.

Apple's MacBook Air M2 recently stood at the top of our list of best laptops, and for good reason. It's incredibly well-built, exuding an elegance that few laptops can match. It's also plenty fast for productivity users, and its GPU is optimized for creators. Its keyboard, touchpad, and display are all top-notch.

Enter the MacBook Air M3, which (hint) took over the MacBook Air's place on that list. The upgraded chipset offers even faster performance, particularly in GPU-intensive apps, and the M3 model supports an additional external display (with the display closed). It's $100 more, but is that uptick in price justified? Let's dig in.
Specs and configurations

Read more
Why you should buy a MacBook Pro instead of a MacBook Air
The 14-inch MacBook Pro on a window sill.

There are plenty of reasons to buy a MacBook Air instead of a MacBook Pro. If you want a MacBook on a budget, you don't necessarily need the goodies that come with upgrading to the MacBook Pro.

That being said, I'm going to argue for spending a little more. In my experience, the MacBook Pro offers several distinct advantages that help justify a higher price, especially with the introduction of the more affordable MacBook Pro 14 with the base M3. If you can stretch your budget a bit, here's why I think you should buy a MacBook Pro instead of a MacBook Air.
Setting the stage: pricing

Read more