2017 iMacs will bring spec bumps to woo power users

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The 2009 unibody iMac proved a watershed design for Jony Ive and Apple.
New iMacs will be aimed at high-end users.
Photo: Apple

Apple is reportedly set to launch new iMacs geared toward the pro market later this year.

The revelation came during a very rare Apple press briefing concerning its future plans. While the big news coming out of this meeting with a small group of reporters is that a radical rethink of the Mac Pro is on the way, there was also talk of an imminent iMac refresh.

As TechCrunch notes:

“Though not a ton of time was spent on the iMac during out discussion, the point was made several times by [Craig] Federighi that Apple sees the iMac as absorbing a certain portion of the pro populace who finds what it is capable to be enough for them.

To facilitate this, Apple will be introducing new iMacs this year with unspecified spec bumps that will make them more attractive to those pro users. We don’t know exactly when they’re coming, but they’re being worked on now.”

While there’s not much more to report than this snippet, the news is certainly going to be received well by people who think Apple abandoned its previous focus on power users. As we noted in our review of the 2016 MacBook Pro (where the word “pro” is right in the title), Apple’s latest laptop doesn’t seems designed to fill the need for high-end computers.

Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey (who recently left Facebook) criticized Apple for losing sight of high-end power users. Specifically, Luckey said the decision not to release an Apple-compatible version of the Oculus headset came down to “the fact that Apple doesn’t prioritize high-end GPUs” as it did “back in the day.”

Meanwhile, a report from late last year claimed the Mac division “lost clout” with Apple’s industrial design group and software team. The report described the Mac division as suffering from a lack of clear direction from senior management, departures of key employees, and technical challenges — all conspiring to make the Mac one of Apple’s forgotten divisions.

What would you like to see from a next-gen iMac? Are you just hankering for a spec boost, or would you like to see a revision in the form factor, which has remained largely untouched for years? Leave your comments below.