So there are rumours buzzing around Mac Rumors, 9to5Mac, Apple Insider plus others that Apple is going to create an iMac Pro, for the lack of a better term, which will fit in the middle ground somewhere between the top end iMac and the entry level next generation Mac Pro that is currently in development (that was disclosed in the recent ‘round table’ with a number of key journalists in the Apple blogosphere). As soon as I heard about it I was reminded of the HP Z1 G2 which took the best of both words – an all in one design but a flip top screen where you can orientate the screen so that it is flat (like how you can do with the the Surface Studio) and then open up it up like opening up a bonnet on a car thus giving you full access:
Like the Z1 G2, there is a rumour that this Mac will include a Xeon class CPU – possibly a Xeon mobile class CPU ( link ) then pair that up with DDR4 ECC and some fast NAND flash then I could imagine it being a good fit but it will be interesting to see whether Apple adds ‘something extra’ to really put a line in the sand which makes the ‘iMac Pro’ different to a regular iMac by way of expandability and upgradeability or otherwise it’ll end up being a slightly faster iMac with little in the way of a qualifiable difference outside of having some faster internals. It will be interesting to see whether it is unveiled at WWDC 2017 due to it being geared towards the professional segment or whether it’ll be held back until they do a refresh of the iMac consumer line later on in the year – the die shrink on the AMD GPU’s should also do wonders when it comes to no only power consumption, performance but also operating a lot cooler. The part that still disappoints me has been the lack of optimisation in their OpenGL and OpenCL frameworks resulting in performance that is worse than on Windows along with the lack of any sizeable uptake of the Metal and Metal Kit frameworks that have been marketed as the successor to OpenGL and OpenCL going forward (the presence on iOS and macOS being a major selling point to developers).
On good news though, Apple has announced that iWork (Pages, Keynote and Numbers), GarageBand and iMovie are now available to old computers that missed the cut off date when the original announcement was made that all new computers will get automatic access to said software. It’ll be interesting to see what happens in the world of iWork when you consider the fact that for the vast majority of people the suite of applications do what the vast majority want but without the major price tag. True, there are those who will want and at times need Microsoft Office but for many iWork will suit them and be a better fit than LibreOffice which is still very rough around the edges when it comes to it running of macOS.
Oh, and in other news I’m getting back onboard the podcast train and hopefully it’ll be the start of something that’ll be around for the long term but I’ll play it by ear before making any sort of promises.