KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo says he expects 2017 to be a solid year for Apple’s MacBook Pro line. The reliable Apple analyst issued a note to investors on Monday, saying that he believes Apple will introduce price cuts for the MacBook Pro, as well as internal upgrades with support for up to 32GB of RAM.
The note comes less than a week after Apple introduced its all-new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar and Touch ID at a media event in Cupertino. The laptop has been met with a fair amount of criticism over its high price tag—the 13-inch model is up $500 over its predecessor—and lower-than-expected specs.
The new MacBook to be launched in 2H17 may support 32GB DRAM, eventually attracting more core users; this depends on whether or not Intel ships Cannonlake CPU on time in 2017, which features 15-25% less power consumption of LPDDR 4, versus the existing LPDDR 3. If Cannonlake doesn’t enter mass production as expected, the new models launched in 2H17 will adopt Coffee Lake, which continues to adopt LPDDR 3, and maximum DRAM support will also remain unchanged at 16GB.
In response to a customer question regarding the MacBook Pro’s 16GB limit, Apple’s Phil Schiller said that to put more RAM into the notebook would’ve required a “memory system that consumes much more power.” A subsequent Reddit report suggested Intel’s Skylake chips may be the technical culprit.
The new MacBook Pro is available for order now (though shipping estimates are weeks out), and prices start at $1,499 for the base model, and $1,799 for the entry-level Touch Bar model.