A day ago, Apple released the first macOS Big Sur 11.0.1 beta for developers, which brings a host of bug fixes and performance improvements prior to its public release. While those are generic changes, the update does come with cryptic information about something really exciting – a reference to unreleased Macs, likely the new ones that will use Apple Silicon. Now, before your imagination goes into overdrive, the new devices are mentioned by internal codenames only and nothing about the product class.
Is Mac hardware with Apple silicon upon us?
The latest beta build carries two bundle files apparently denoting two unreleased Macs, while the previous macOS Big Sur beta update mentioned another model as well. Here are the file bundle names – MacHardwareTypes-2020f.bundle, MacHardwareTypes-2020g.bundle, and MacHardwareTypes-2020h.bundle. The references were first spotted by developer Hans Harck Tønning (@HarckerTech) who shared a screenshot of the file bundles on Twitter.
Now, it is hard to decipher whether these are codenames for a MacBook or iMac, but the ‘2020’ in the file names suggests that these could be unveiled later this year. Previous leaks suggest that Apple will hold an event next month, specifically on November 17, to announce new Mac hardware with Apple silicon inside. Now, we’ve heard rumors of a new 24-inch iMac being in the pipeline as well, but it is unclear if it will pack an Intel processor or it will be among the first Macs to draw power from in-house silicon.
However, if all three Mac devices that have been mentioned in macOS Big Sur beta updates debut at the same time, we are almost certainly getting new MacBooks, likely with Apple silicon inside. Back in June, Apple announced that the first Mac powered by custom silicon will arrive by the end of 2020. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently predicted that a redesigned 13.3-inch MacBook Pro powered by Apple Silicon will start shipping in the fourth quarter of 2020. Additionally, a new MacBook Air with in-house silicon is expected to go into production around the same time and will eventually debut early next year.