Apple’s October Mac Refresh Will Include Thinner MacBook Pro, Revamped MacBook Air, 5K Monitor

There's a lot of buzz about Apple's upcoming media event in which it's expected the company will introduce the next generation of its iPhone line, presumably the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, and perhaps another Apple Watch as well. Ah, but handsets and wearables aren't the only devices on tap. Apple is said to refreshing its other products too, including its iPad and MacBook systems.

Though the tablet gold rush is now a thing of the past, Apple is working on software and hardware upgrades to its and iPad Pro slates. Apple's looking to reverse a trend of nine straight quarters of declining iPad sales, and part of that will include making improvements to its Apple Pencil, a stylus-like tool for iPad Pro owners. Hardware upgrades, including a faster display that allows for smoother zooming and scrolling, will come into play as well.

MacBook Air and Display

On the laptop front, Apple has some new Mac products in the pipeline. One of those includes a new MacBook Air with a USB Type-C port, according to Bloomberg's unnamed sources. They didn't say what else might be different about the new generation MacBook Air, but just the fact that Apple is keeping it in its product line alongside its comparably thin MacBook is interesting.

Speaking of thin, there's a slimmer MacBook Pro with a lower profile keyboard in the works. The main selling point of the new MacBook Pro will be a new digital function key above the keyboard. It will allow for users to perform common tasks more quickly for whatever program is being used at the time. While the name may change before it's released, Apple's currently calling it the "Dynamic Function Row."

The Digital Function Row will change depending on what the user is doing. On the normal desktop, they'll appear as regular Function keys. But in certain applications, they'll change to provide shortcuts to common tasks. This will be part of Apple's Mac OS X Sierra update.

Finally, Apple's working with LG Electronics on a new 5K resolution monitor. This is somewhat of a surprise move after Apple discontinued its 27-inch Thunderbolt display, seemingly indicating it was exiting the monitor market.