Why new MacBooks were a no-show at Apple’s iPhone XS event


Once again, Macs of any kind were a no-show at Apple’s latest keynote. While this pattern should almost be a given at this point, it’s no less disappointing. 

However, between Apple keeping to a very mobile-centric show and other rumblings in the silicon world, we can imagine two key reasons as to why there weren’t any new Macs announced alongside the new Apple Watch 4 and iPhone XS.

MacBook Air

One of these things is not like the others

We’re well past the days of Apple launching a half dozen products at once. As of late, Apple has been much more focused on presenting a focused lineup within a specific category. Now this time around, the Cupertino-based company took that idea to its most extreme by only announcing four new products.

Apple will likely hold a keynote just for new MacBooks and Mac desktops – hopefully in October – after all, Apple computer products have been long overdue for a solo showcase. In fact, the last time a Mac was given stage time was when Apple introduced the iMac Pro at WWDC 2017 last June.

Although both the 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro were just refreshed with Coffee Lake processors in July, the announcement was given little fanfare compared the grand reveals new iPhones and Apple Watches are given.

Mac Mini

Not the right time yet

It makes even more sense for Apple to hold back on these announcements if you look at the state of the world of components, which is very much in flux.

On the mobile front, Intel just introduced new Whiskey Lake and Amber Lake processors, which are reportedly experiencing shortages that could have pushed back a new MacBook announcement. This isn’t great timing for Apple to at last become current with the latest processors like it has with the new MacBook Pro, as Intel is reportedly running into 14nm supply problems across the board.

Then, the realm of desktop components is an even greater state of flux. Looking at Apple’s history, it usually prefers Intel processors, but Coffee Lake Refresh processors still seem months away; and AMD for graphics, which hasn’t really seen any new parts in the last year except for the Radeon RX Vega 56 Nano.

Despite this seemingly ongoing hold on any big new Mac releases, Apple has made promises to deliver a new Mac Mini and Mac Pro 2019. We just hope it will make good on its vows before the end of this year – or even the next year.

Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee was a former computing reporter at TechRadar. Kevin is now the SEO Updates Editor at IGN based in New York. He handles all of the best of tech buying guides while also dipping his hand in the entertainment and games evergreen content. Kevin has over eight years of experience in the tech and games publications with previous bylines at Polygon, PC World, and more. Outside of work, Kevin is major movie buff of cult and bad films. He also regularly plays flight & space sim and racing games. IRL he's a fan of archery, axe throwing, and board games.