Reports of the Mac Pro’s death have been greatly exaggerated. The lovechild of a pedal bin and the Death Star has been untouched by Apple since 2013, but in a roundtable attended by Buzzfeed News, Phil Schiller revealed that the company is “completely rethinking the Mac Pro”.
“Since the Mac Pro is a modular system, we are also doing a pro display. There’s a team working hard on it right now,” he added. Hard, but apparently not that hard: “You won’t see any of these products this year,” he explained – apparently the team will be taking their time over getting it right.
The new system will be planned with the ability to upgrade at its core – something that’s lacking with the unusual design of the existing Mac Pro, at odds with its target demographic: professionals who need the most bang for their buck.
That almost certainly means the end of the road for the circular design. As Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering explained, the design is obviously striking, but tough to work with. “We wanted to do something bold and different. What we didn’t appreciate completely at the time was how we had so tailored that design to a specific vision that in the future we would find ourselves a bit boxed in — into a circular shape.”
“It served its purpose well,” Apple’s vice president of hardware engineering John Ternus added. “It just doesn’t have the flexibility we now know we need to have.”
Whether the next step will be an equally unusual shape (hexagons are underrated) or a return to more conventional computer design will become clear at some point in the next few years. But for now rest assured power users: Apple hasn’t forgotten you.