Intel chip delays could push 12-inch Retina MacBook back to 2015

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People waiting for the rumored 12-inch Retina MacBook may just have to keep right on waiting, according to a new report from Taiwan’s Economic Daily News, which blames the wait on Intel’s delayed 14-nanometer Broadwell chips, which are reportedly used in the computers.

Because of these production delays, the report claims that the 12-inch MacBook may not ship until Q3 2014 or even early 2015, when the chips will be in greater supply.

Rumors of a 12-inch MacBook have increasingly done the rounds over the past year. The idea is that a 12-inch MacBook would give users the portability and convenience of Apple’s existing 11-inch MacBook Air, but also the productivity and power of the larger, 13-inch model. A previous report from supply chain sources suggests the believable idea that Apple’s desire to move to a 12-inch MacBook is an attempt to establish a clear size difference with the iPad Air, to avoid the two product lines cannibalizing one another.

While there are potential workarounds to the delayed chips issue, if Apple decides that it is indeed tied to using Intel’s unavailable 14-nanometer Broadwell chips, it will have to delay its major product updates until the chips are ready to go.

It’s not all bad news, though. Another report from the Economic Daily News claims that new 11- and 13-inch MacBook Air models are going to enter production over the new month – featuring brand new processors, displays, chassis, and other components.

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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