Industry Experts Disagree Over Future of 27-Inch iMac Pro

Future of 27-Inch iMac Pro

When Apple discontinued the 27-inch iMac during its “Peek Performance” event, heads started spinning. Rumors had pointed to an upgraded model of the all-in-one, but instead the Cupertino-based company axed the product. While some industry analysts and experts agree a new 27-inch iMac Pro is still coming, others aren’t so sure.

Apple Studio Display As a Source of Confusion

To begin with, DSCC analyst Ross Young was convinced Apple was about to unveil a new 27-inch iMac. At least, he was until Cupertino revealed the Apple Studio Display. That surprise launch led Young to explain his sources weren’t aware of the separation between the iMac and Studio Display.

Young still hasn’t resumed predicting a 27-inch iMac. He does believe, though, that Cupertino is working on yet another external display option using mini-LED backlighting. Young believed this 27-inch display is coming around June 2022, perhaps as a Pro version of the Studio Display.

Meanwhile, both TF Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman believe Apple is, in fact, still planning for a 27-inch iMac Pro. Kuo predicted the more affordable 27-inch external display we saw in the Studio Display.

Gurman, too, is insistent a new 27-inch iMac Pro is on the horizon. He calls the idea of Apple offering desktop display options only including the Studio Display and Pro Display XDR “absurd.” The journalist has stood by his prediction of a new all-in-one, but isn’t sure of the timing.

Chinks in the Studio Display’s Elegant Finish May Spur Apple to Revisit the 27-Inch iMac Pro

Speaking of the Studio Display, early reviews point to some serious flaws. The Wall Street Journal’s Joanna Stern demonstrated serious quality discrepancies between the Studio Display’s webcam and that of other displays and devices.

Reviewers in general have agreed the display quality is also poor, or at least unimpressive. While an Apple spokesperson claims a software update is forthcoming to address at least some of the issues, these faults could seriously impact sales.

One Mac Observer reader predicted that poor sales of the Studio Display would prompt the tech giant to revisit the idea of a 27-inch iMac. Analysts believe, and I hope, Apple is already doing so. An option between the Studio Display and Pro Display XDR is necessary, even without the apparent flaws of the former.

3 thoughts on “Industry Experts Disagree Over Future of 27-Inch iMac Pro

  • Apple’s Studio Display costs only $200 less then the entire 27″ intel iMac with the same display. That creates some awkward pricing issues if another 27″ (or larger) iMac comes out.

  • Jeff:

    Uncertainty is a good thing. Many are discomfited by it, however it is a primary driver of investigation, query and learning. It creates deeper understanding and drives progress. Certainty is illusory. A goal, not a destination. Uncertainty is our abode and our friend.

    Looked at another way, this question is not even about the iMac. The real uncertainty is about the user base, and how we want to work in uncertain times of off vs onsite, and how Apple will respond to our purchasing and uptake behaviour in the uncertain constraints of war, pandemic and economic volatility. Apple and all of us are on a voyage of discovery of how we will adapt, and which tools we choose for the most successful adaptation. 

    This dialectic of offer and acceptance between Apple and the user base is how best in class user experience gets made. 

    I maintain that Apple will not make a 27” iMac right now because those screens have been repurposed for the Studio Display. However, based on the force of upgrade (the Studio is more expensive than the former base 27” iMac), Apple will have to make some decisions. This was not a wild gamble. Apple did their pre-marketing surveillance. What they could not know is the force of upgrade in the face of new economic volatility courtesy of war and sanctions (on top of the long tail of a logistics breakdown courtesy of the pandemic) and an increase in the cost of borrowing. If the community vote for similar capability to various iterations of the Studio but in a less expensive package with their wallets…then the 27” iMac is back on. 

    As for yours truly, I’m enjoying the uncertainty, what will emerge from it, and feel no compelling reason to make a decision just yet. 

  • Solving the quality issues on the Studio display doesn’t correlate a new 27 inch IMac. Are there any out there who are the intended audience for the Mac Studio want to chime in on this?

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