Is Apple killing off the 13-inch MacBook Pro for an M2-powered 14-inch model?

Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020)
(Image credit: Future)

Apple might not release a MacBook Pro 13-inch 2022 model according to a new rumor, which suggests the company will instead release a MacBook Pro 14-inch powered by a brand new M2 chip. This will be the follow-up to the successful M1 chip that powers the current MacBook Pro 13-inch and MacBook Air (the latter of which remains our pick as the best laptop you can buy right now).

The rumor, reported by Apple Insider, comes from a tweet by reputable leaker DylanDKT, who claims the MacBook Pro 14-inch (M2, 2022) will come in the second half of 2022, and will be released alongside a redesigned MacBook Air (2022), which will run on the M2 chip as well.

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The leaker also confirmed to a follower that the new 14-inch MacBook Pro will come with the same design as the MacBook Pro 14-inch (2021) which released last year.

That came with a choice of powerful M1 Pro or M1 Max chips, and while the M2 would likely be more powerful than the M1 chip in the 13-inch MacBook Pro, it may not be as powerful as the M1 Pro or M1 Max.

Analysis: 2022 is shaping up to be an exciting year

We expected Apple to work on a follow-up to both the 13-inch MacBook Pro and the M1 chip, so we’re not too surprised to hear the company may be readying new laptops with an M2 chip. When Apple switched from Intel to its own M1 chip, there was a concern that the company may be biting off more than it could chew, but it proved critics wrong, releasing a series of M1-powered MacBooks and Macs that offered brilliant performance.

We’re keen to see what the M2 chip brings to the table. What is perhaps more surprising is the rumor that the 13-inch MacBook Pro will be no more. When Apple launched the 14-inch model last year, some people thought that the company may keep the 14-inch MacBook Pro for heavy-duty users, due to its M1 Pro and M1 Max specifications and high price tag, leaving the smaller MacBook Pro 13-inch for people who didn’t quite need that level of performance.

However, dropping the 13-inch model makes a lot of sense – especially if the M2 MacBook Pro 14-inch does indeed have the same design as the existing MacBook Pro 14-inch. It means Apple doesn’t have to make separate parts for the 13-inch model, which will certainly make things easier (and cheaper) for Apple.

It could make buying a 14-inch MacBook Pro a bit more confusing for some people, however, as you’ll need to carefully look at the specifications. While we have no doubt that the M2 chip will again be fantastic, it may not stack up to the M1 Pro or M1 Max.

Still, we loved the 14-inch MacBook Pro – it earned one of our rare five-star ratings – so if Apple is planning a more affordable version of people who don’t need the raw power on offer, that’s only a good thing in our book.

We also can’t wait to see Apple’s plans for the MacBook Air in 2022 as well. If a redesign and a performance boost with M2 is on the cards, then it could be another shoo-in for topping our best laptops list once again.

Matt Hanson
Managing Editor, Core Tech

Matt is TechRadar's Managing Editor for Core Tech, looking after computing and mobile technology. Having written for a number of publications such as PC Plus, PC Format, T3 and Linux Format, there's no aspect of technology that Matt isn't passionate about, especially computing and PC gaming. Ever since he got an Amiga A500+ for Christmas in 1991, he's loved using (and playing on) computers, and will talk endlessly about how The Secret of Monkey Island is the best game ever made.