New baseline MacBook Pro predicted to offer lesser displays without ProMotion or mini LED

Apple’s upcoming new baseline M2 MacBook Pro should have a lesser display with no ProMotion nor mini-LED in order to keep the price down.

2020 MacBook Pro with the lid half open
  • Apple is suspected to have new baseline models of the MacBook Pro in the pipeline that should lose the Touch Bar and replace the current M1-powered 13-inch models.
  • The forthcoming notebooks are also said to come equipped with screens measuring 14 inches diagonally and be powered by the company’s unreleased M2 chip.
  • However, the machines won’t feature Apple’s ProMotion 120Hz dynamic refresh technology and mini-LED backlights which help provide an OLED-like experience.

New cheaper M2 MacBook Pros could be in the works

Apple is expected to launch several new Mac notebooks and desktops in 2022, including new baseline models with screens measuring 14 inches diagonally. The 13-inch MacBook Pros are currently the only models in the offering that sport the much-maligned Touch Bar feature, but those upcoming 14-inch notebooks apparently won’t have one.

Mark Gurman, writing in his Power On newsletter on Bloomberg, claims that Apple will release new entry-level MacBook Pro models later this year, powered by Apple’s M2 chip.

I’d expect the new entry-level MacBook Pro to match the high-end MacBook Pros by losing the Touch Bar, but key differentiators will be lesser displays, processors, and storage, and no ProMotion nor mini-LED. It’ll be one of many Macs in the pipeline with the M2 chip, including refreshes to the 24-inch iMac, entry-level Mac mini and revamped MacBook Air.

In other words, the rumored new 14-inch baseline models could entirely replace the current 13-inchers which also have LCD screens that lack ProMotion and mini-LED.

The report doesn’t say when these notebooks might arrive.

Gurman thinks Apple will be holding a virtual event on March 8 to introduce the next iPhone SE with 5G connectivity and new iPad Air models, both powered by Apple’s A15 chip. At least one new Mac model is expected to be unveiled at the event, Gurman has it.

iDB’s take: The world needs more affordable MacBook Pros

Apple launched a new 14-inch size for the MacBook Pro family in 2021. Apple currently offers the MacBook Pro family in three sizes: 13 inches, 14 inches and 16 inches. The new 14-incher is expected to supplant the current 13-inch model in the lineup rather than serve as a replacement for the 14-inch one.

That’s because the new baseline 14-inch models will be powered by Apple’s next-generation M2 chip versus the Apple M1 chip in the current 13-inch MacBook Pro. The M2 chip will be faster than M1, and Apple isn’t expected to keep the M1 model in the lineup once the new M2-powered 13-inch MacBook Pros arrive.

According to Gurman, the first M2 chip will not outperform the higher-end M1 Pro and M1 Pro Max found in the more expensive MacBook Pro models. Those Macs are widely expected to be updated with the upcoming M2 Pro and M2 Pro Max chips later in 2022.

In fact, as Gurman states, the new baseline MacBook Pro will be “one of many Macs in the pipeline with the M2 chip,” including updates to the 24-inch iMac all-in-one and the entry-level Mac mini. A revamped MacBook Air is also in the works.