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article imageApple to launch MacBook Pro with 32GB of RAM this year

By James Walker     Jan 17, 2017 in Technology
Apple is said to be planning a new premium MacBook Pro model that includes truly high-end hardware. It comes after criticism of the 2016 version which features low-power processors and limited memory, making it unsuitable for professional work.
Last year's MacBook Pro marked the most substantial refresh of the brand in several years. However, many former fans were left dissatisfied. Aside from its lack of "legacy" connectivity, the Pro's hardware leaves it looking decidedly un-pro. As Apple is targeting professionals who require high-end machines, the 16GB memory cap came as an unexpected blow.
Apple has previously said the MacBook Pro's use of 16GB of RAM is down to efficiency. Supporting 32GB would have required the use of more power-hungry memory chips and larger modules which may have reduced the size of the battery compartment. Considering the MacBook Pro's battery has already been through enough controversy, the team played it safe and decided to ship with 16GB of RAM.
This amount would be plenty on most consumer machines. However, imaging and video professionals routinely use very high amounts of RAM, beyond what the MacBook Pro can offer. Addressing the criticism, Apple plans to release a revised line-up of laptops later this year that will do away with the limitation, according to reports today.
The information comes from respected KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a note passed to news sites including AppleInsider, Kuo said a 15-inch MacBook Pro with up to 32GB of RAM will launch in the fourth quarter of 2017. There will also be new versions of the 12-inch MacBook that will come with 16GB of RAM. Currently, these smaller MacBooks are only offered with up to 8GB.
Processor choices will be updated across the board to include Intel's upcoming Kaby Lake chips. These will provide a significant performance boost over the Skylake series currently found in the MacBook Pro. As a consequence of the overhaul, last year's models are expected to receive substantial price cuts that will also be intended to increase overall Mac shipments.
Combined, the changes will help Apple to regain the support of fans of its "pro" products. It alienated some users with last year's MacBook Pro, failing to deliver the laptop many had hoped for. It only just missed the mark though, allowing it to take a second chance this year. The company has repetitively defended its design decisions and has recently announced a software update designed to improve battery performance.
Apple didn't have a great year with the MacBook in 2016. With the new MacBook Pro more controversial than anticipated and supply bottlenecks limiting its shipments, the company saw sales fall 8.7 percent.
Mac performed the worst out of any top-five PC manufacturer, a recent Gartner research report revealed. The introduction of more powerful hardware to reaffirm the MacBook's "pro" status could help to prevent further slumps in 2017, although no launch is expected until after the summer.
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