Apple Might Release a Faster Mac Mini in the Near Future
(Photo: Joey Banks/Unsplash)Apple is planning on releasing a higher-end version of the Mac Mini that will one-up its existing edition. The new drop will arrive within “the next several months” and will involve an updated design, both for aesthetic and utility purposes, according to Bloomberg’s Power On newsletter.
While Apple isn’t necessarily overdue for an upgraded Mac Mini, the rumor comes as no surprise given the company’s tendency to announce new products in the summertime and begin selling them in the fall. After years of centering around Intel hardware, the current Mac Mini (which was, true to form, released in the fall of 2020) is the first of its line to contain an Apple M1 chip, designed specifically for the Mac to be a one-stop-shop for CPU, GCU, neural engine, and I/O. Though impressive, the M1 model was intended to replace its entry-level predecessor via its hardware alone, while a 2018 Intel chip version retained its relevance as a “pro” mini desktop option. Its body, meanwhile, has barely changed throughout the past decade (though to be fair, it’s tough to get super creative with what’s meant to be an approachable desktop that doesn’t take up a ton of your workspace).
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, who writes Power On, says he believes the 2018 Intel version of the Mac Mini has only stuck around for so long due to its practicality, as it can handle more complex tasks like software development and video editing. But what he knows of the new Mac Mini—AKA the “M1X Mac Mini”—indicates that it will likely boot the Intel version from the Mini line. The M1X is also said to possess more ports than the current version, which contains two Thunderbolt ports, two USB-A ports, and one HDMI 2.0 port. Based on Apple’s history of tacking an “X” onto the names of other devices, it seems as though the new unit will contain the same-generation CPU cores as before, but with more of them on the same chip to help boost performance, similar to what we learned back in June about the upcoming MacBook Pro. It’s possible the new chip will have twice as many cores and support up to 64GB of RAM, instead of just 16GB like the current M1 chip.
Apple is expected to announce a host of new products this fall, alongside its newest iOS and what’s rumored to be a heavily updated iPad Mini.