MacBook Pro 2012 to Be Slimmer, but Not Air-inspired

As the clock winds down towards the start of this year’s World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC), new details have emerged regarding the design changes to the 2012 revision of the MacBook Pro. Rumors have swirled of a massive redesign of these laptops – with some claiming that a tapered, MacBook Air-inspired design will be featured in the new Pro models. Nevertheless, the most recent reports claim otherwise.

According to Slashgear, the MacBook Pro 2012’s case will look pretty much the same as last year’s model, but with the optical drive replaced by a larger battery and an SSD boot drive. 9to5Mac corroborated this report, saying that the prototype of the new laptops is a “thinner, yet more robust, version” of the MacBook Pro.

While the debate on the physical characteristics of the upcoming MacBook Pro models rages on, there are also a handful of under-the-hood updates that have been speculated upon.

Of these updates, new CPUs courtesy of Intel’s Ivy Bridge line of microprocessors are essentially a given. These provide better performance with lower power consumption. The chips also come with more powerful graphics cores that could drive larger-resolution screens with ease.

The new MacBook Pro’s display is also the subject of much speculation. A persistent rumor is that the new laptops will come with a Retina display that would have an exceptional 2048 x 1536 resolution. There are also rumors that the new MacBook Pros could come with discrete Nvidia graphics.

Ivy Bridge comes out of the box with USB 3.0 support, giving users the option to use compatible super-speed external devices like hard drives, cameras and the like.

If the 2012 MacBook Pro ships with even a small proportion of these rumored features, Apple is sure to have another winner on its hands. Everything should be cleared up on June 11, when WWDC kicks off with a keynote that’s likely to be delivered by CEO Tim Cook.