Analyst believes 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro is coming

MacBook Pro
Apple may begin production on a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display this year

Rumors about upcoming Apple products are nothing new, and seemingly follow the Cupertino-based company year-round.

When Apple released the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display earlier this year, reports began to circulate that a 13-inch model would soon follow.

A few months later, and with no 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro on the books, rumors continued to point to Apple developing the smaller model, even going so far as to allude to a September release.

It's now October, and Apple still hasn't mentioned or even hinted at the possibility of such a laptop existing.

However, even analysts believe Apple will release a compact model of its Retina MacBook Pro, though it may come a bit later than originally thought.

Production to begin by Q4

DisplaySearch's Richard Shim thinks Apple will begin production on the 13-inch MacBook with Retina display later this year.

Shim originally predicted production would begin during the third quarter of 2012, but clearly that hasn't been the case.

With the iPad Mini rumored for release later this October, Shim thinks it's unlikely Apple will make any formal announcements about a new MacBook until the iPad Mini has launched.

Additionally, Shim still anticipates the smaller Retina screen to have a pixel density of 2560 x 1600, rather than the 2880 x 1800 the 15-inch model carries.

That would put the 13-inch model on par with the resolution of the rumored Google Nexus 10, the supposed big brother of the company's Nexus 7 tablet.

There's no indication about what price the new model might carry. However, Shim expects the 13-inch to come in at a more consumer friendly price than the 15-inch's $2,199 (UK£1,373, AU$2,147).

Until Apple makes a more formal declaration, we'll just have to keep our fingers crossed a smaller, more affordable Retina MacBook is on the way.