Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June could see the unveiling of new MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models, according to new reports.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has a strong track record for predicting Apple product launches, said in a research note on Sunday that he believes Apple will unveil updated MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models at WWDC this year, which he expects will feature Intel's new Haswell processors.
Intel has recently announced that its Haswell processors, the fourth generation Intel Core processor family that's set to replace Ivy Bridge, will be launched on 3 June. Apple's WWDC 2013 will kick off on 10 June.
Previously, Kuo had predicted that Apple would ditch its non-Retina MacBook Pro in favour of a lower-priced all-Retina MacBook lineup, but the analyst now thinks Apple will keep the non-Retina models.
"There is still demand in emerging markets, where internet penetration isn't advanced, for optical disk drives," Kuo said, highlighting that the non-Retina MacBook Pro models are Apple's last remaining laptops with a built-in optical drive.
Kuo predicts that Apple will begin shipping its updated MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models by the end of quarter two, but that the new MacBook Pro with Retina display won't be released until later in the year due to low display panel yield.
Kuo's predictions follow a report last week from Digitimes, which cited sources from Apple's supply chain who claim that quarterly MacBook shipments are expected to grow 10 per cent sequentially, as the company works through its excess inventory before ramping up production of updated MacBook models with the Intel Haswell chip in May.
These sources said that Apple has not issued any instructions for major design modifications of its MacBook Pro or iMac, suggesting that the company will focus on upgrading the internal components of its computers this year.
It would not be unusual for Apple to update its MacBook lineup at this year's WWDC. Last year, Apple unveiled the 15in MacBook Pro with Retina display during the event's keynote.
Apple announced this year's WWDC dates on Wednesday, revealing that the event will take place on 10-14 June in San Francisco and will offer developers an "in-depth" look at iOS 7 and OS X 10.9, Apple's next mobile and Mac operating systems.
The tickets for the event sold out in a record two minutes when they went on sale on Thursday.