MacBook Pro 14-inch could be a powerful – but pricey – beast of a laptop

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

Apple’s sized-up MacBook Pro 14-inch could witness a price hike compared to the current 13-inch model, and it’ll offer the same performance as the MacBook Pro 16-inch refresh it’s rumored to be arriving alongside later this year.

This is the latest rumor on Twitter from leaker Dylandkt, an iOS developer who has produced a fair bit of Apple-related speculation in recent times, and has been on the money in the past with some rumors.

In a follow-up tweet, Dylandkt clarifies that both the new MacBook Pro 14-inch and 16-inch will have the same M1X chip (if that’s what the M1 sequel ends up being called), and therefore those buying the more portable model won’t be compromising on performance compared to the laptop with a bigger chassis.

The price of the new MacBook Pro 14-inch will also be driven up, the leaker claims, so we’re looking at an increase from the starting price of the current base model of the 13-inch (M1-powered) version, which kicks off at $1,299 / £1,299.

Dylandkt told MacRumors that this new 14-inch model might be pitched at around the same level as the existing high-end MacBook Pro 13-inch, with that (Intel-powered) version currently starting from $1,799 / £1,799.

The price of the MacBook Pro 16-inch should remain locked in with this incoming refresh, with the machine currently starting at $2,399 / £2,399.

So, we could be looking at a hefty hike for the 14-inch model, perhaps to more like $2,000 / £2,000, and Dylandkt observes that this version will be priced a lot closer to the 16-inch laptop due to them offering similar performance levels, which makes sense.

Apple is set to debut these purported new MacBook Pro models either in October or November, with mass production of the incoming laptops already being cranked up according to rumors.

Analysis: Should we start getting worried about MacBook affordability?

Remember as ever, this is just chatter from the grapevine, so take it all with a good deal of caution – but a big price increase of this kind of magnitude will surely be a bitter pill to swallow for many potential buyers.

Then again, if the new MacBook Pro 14-inch does indeed offer an all-new design with a fancy Mini LED screen, and a seriously powerful processor to match the 16-inch model, then it’s obviously unrealistic to expect that it won’t get a major price hike. Those kinds of upgrades aren’t going to come cheap.

Perhaps the bigger problem could be that if the smaller MacBook Pro has its pricing ramped up, the rumor mill is also guessing that the next MacBook Air refresh – purportedly arriving mid-2022 – will also be bristling with tasty upgrades like that Mini LED screen, and maybe even an M2 chip, which again could drive up the price tag considerably.

Leaving us with the prospect of affordable Apple laptops becoming distinctly thinner on the ground – though obviously the company should keep some manner of budget options on the table. Clearly, that would have to happen, and it might mean something like keeping the current MacBook Air (M1) on as a wallet-friendly option alongside the 2022 model, as we’ve previously discussed.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).