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Apple Insider is exclusively reporting that, according to "people with proven insight into Apple's future product plans," the MacBook Pro will get a mild refresh this month. The update is reported to only mildly increase processor speed, and is being pushed out early because Intel will not have their next generation chips ready until the second quarter of 2012.
If it feels like we just got a MacBook refresh, well, that's because we did. It was just this past February when Cupertino released the latest MacBook Pros. Usually, we're stuck waiting for another year before it's time to upgrade, but it may be that Apple's doing it to keep up with the rest of its competitors and take advantage of the holiday buying season.
This year's MacBook refresh was a real doozy, too, with the inclusion of dual-core Sandy Bridge Core i5 and i7 chips for the 13-inch model and quad-core Sandy Bridge Core i7 chips for the 15- and 17-inch models. And don't forget Thunderbolt, which honestly we haven't even gotten used to yet.
This week, at the Intel Developer's Forum, Intel announced new 2.4GHz, 2.5GHz and 2.7GHz quad-core Core i7 processors, which could replace the 2.0GHz, 2.2GHz and 2.3GHz chips in the current 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pros, as well as a 2.8GHz dual-core Core i7, which could replace the current 2.7GHz 13-inch MacBook Pro.
According to the initial report, there have been no peeps about Apple drawing down inventories of existing MacBook Pros, so perhaps, as AppleInsider suggests, this refresh is only to make sure the MacBook line stays competitive over the holiday shopping season and until Intel releases the next-generation Ivy Bridge chips in late 2012.
If the rumor does pan out, it does not appear the new MacBook Pros will have any other cosmetic or component updates.