Apple’s Recent Firmware Updates Enabled SATA 6Gbps Support in New MacBooks



Apple’s recent firmware updates were famous for preparing the company’s latest Thunderbolt-equipped Macs for the upcoming Thunderbolt Display. However, they also enabled one feature than Apple didn’t tell you: SATA 6Gbps support.

That means your new MacBook Pro or MacBook Air is now capable of SATA 6bps transfer speeds. So why didn’t Apple tell you? Surely this is something the company would want to boast about? ZDNet explains:

Apple doesn’t promote the fact that the 2011 MacBook Pros and Airs support SATA 6Gbps because it isn’t officially supported. I bet that it’s because Apple can’t get sufficient quantities of SATA 6Gbps SSD modules. Apple ships its current MacBooks with SATA 3Gbps SSDs and doesn’t want to promote itsSATA 6Gbps support until it can ship every unit with a 6Gbps SSD from the factory. What’s the point of promoting SATA 6G when shipping SATA 3G drives?

So, although your new Mac might be capable of those speeds, its SSD might not, and so Apple will keep this little feature a secret for the time being. However, Other World Computing, who first noticed the feature’s activation, does supply SATA 6Gbps solid-state drives for new Macs if you really want those speeds.

Will 6Gbps speeds persuade you to upgrade your Mac’s SSD?

[via ZDNet]

  • YoYo


  • Frustrated

    Yes, I will upgrade if Apple officially put an SSD module which saturators the 6Gbps bandwidth

  • Marshalus

    I don’t know if this article is accurate. The MBP has had a SATA III (6Gb) port since it was refreshed in 2011. The port has always been 6Gb capable. The firmware update added stability to the interface, which is what OWC has on their site, and is great for a lot of users like myself who are using a SATA III SSD, previously we’d get inconsistent performance. However, I must say, it’s freaky fast with SATA III in there. My MBP cold boots up in about 7 seconds, even with full drive encryption enabled.

  • djrobsd

    This is not news..  My 2011 Macbook Pro has had 6gbps SATA 3 since the day I bought it.

  • Stephen Gibson Agnew

    I would like to add that the 2.2 EFI update only works if you purchase and install Lion. So the 2011 MacBook Pro I bought that came with Snow Leopard can not update the firmware to 2.2. The firmware is listed as an update but will not install unless you purchase and install Lion.

    This actually pisses me off. It appears that Apple purposefully disabled SATA 3 in the 2011 MacBook Pros so that you would be more motivated have to buy their new OS 3-4 months later if you wanted the problem solved. Disgusting and corrupt. BLAH!!

  • Nutz320

    I doubt they did it to make people buy Lion. If they wanted people to buy Lion, they could just take off a feature that is actually PUBLICISED. It’s a secret feature, you’re not even supposed to know about it, so how is it a trick to get you to buy Lion?