The iMac hasn’t been updated in over a year and the Mac Pro is more than three years old without any changes, leaving many wondering if Apple is stepping back from the desktop computer market. Apple CEO Tim Cook says that’s not so, and that there are “great desktops in our roadmap.”
Mr. Cook shared that with Apple employees in a post on the company’s internal message board. TechCrunch got ahold of the message where an employee asked, “We had a big MacBook Pro launch in October and a powerful upgrade to the MacBook back in the spring. Are Mac desktops strategic for us?”
Mr. Cook responded saying that “the desktop is very strategic for us.” He added,
Some folks in the media have raised the question about whether we’re committed to desktops. If there’s any doubt about that with our teams, let me be very clear: we have great desktops in our roadmap. Nobody should worry about that.
That’s somewhat reassuring since Apple’s desktop product lineup seems to be languishing. What’s missing is a clear statement as to what that roadmap includes, like “a significant upgrade for iMacs this year,” or “new Mac Pro models are coming this spring.”
What Mr. Cook is saying is that Apple plans to do something in the desktop space, but he isn’t saying what that means. He could be talking about incremental changes such as new processors and adding USB-C ports, or he could mean radical redesigns are coming.
Based on current sentiment, it doesn’t look like there’s much hope for major changes and instead people are expecting little more than processor bumps. That said, this is Apple’s opportunity to prove the pundits wrong and release game changing desktop hardware.
In the context of his reply, it probably doesn’t mean too much that he didn’t mention the Mac specifically. The question he was posed asked about the Mac and the desktop space and that’s what he addressed in his reply. Translation: just because Mr. Cook said “desktop” instead of “Mac” doesn’t mean the Mac desktop product line is dead.
What we do know is that Mr. Cook said Apple is still committed to the desktop. Now he needs to prove it.