Apple’s redesigned 24in iMac is exciting; it boasts a slimmer build, bigger display, Apple’s M1 processor and a raft of hardware improvements, and it’s available in a variety of eye-catching colours too. Best of all? It gives us a glimpse at what to expect from the successor to the 27in iMac, with rumours suggesting a screen increase possibly up to 32in alongside a dramatically thin new form factor.
That rumour was further fueled by the introduction of the
Mac Studio and its accompanying 27in Studio Display, and the subsequent discontinuation of the standard 27in iMac, in March 2022.
With Apple’s deadline of transitioning its Mac range to Apple Silicon drawing ever closer, it’s possible that we could see the reveal of a new big iMac in the coming months. Here’s all there is to know so far, including release date rumours, pricing speculation and the latest leaks.
New iMac (32in, 2022) Release date
When Apple initially revealed its transition to its own Apple Silicon back in June 2020, the company claimed the process would take two years, with the entire Mac family transitioning to the chipset by the end of 2022 at the latest.
The larger 27in iMac was updated in August 2020, but without the M1. The
redesigned 24in iMac, pictured throughout this article, offers a taste of what’s to come but while many assumed the larger iMac would follow on mere months after the 24in model, leaker @Dylandkt claims (in a
now-deleted tweet) that it isn’t due for release until sometime in 2022.
Ross Young also suggests a 2022 release is on the cards for the next iMac, but he went a step further than Dylan by specifically pointing towards a Q1 2022 launch, which runs from January to March 2022.
However, with no reveal during Apple’s March 2022 event, that’s looking increasingly unlikely.
It seems something is coming though; following the announcement of the Mac Studio and its 27in display in March 2022, Apple officially discontinued the ageing 27in iMac. Could it be clearing the way for the larger, redesigned 32in iMac in the coming months? Possibly.
New iMac (32in, 2022) pricing
Considering we don’t yet have anything approaching a solid release date, we can only speculate about potential pricing of the redesigned larger iMac. And that, of course, means looking at the 24in iMac release to give us an idea of what to expect – and that could mean good news.
Despite the redesigned form factor, increase in display size and introduction of new tech including Apple’s M1 and an upgraded webcam, the 24in iMac pricing reflects that of its older 21in counterpart.
If Apple decides to do the same with the larger model, we could see the new iMac come in at the same price as the existing 27in range. For reference, here’s how much the current 27in iMac range costs:
- 27in iMac (3.1GHz, i5, 256GB SSD, Radeon Pro 5300) – £1,799 / $1,799
- 27in iMac (3.3GHz, i5, 512GB SSD, Radeon Pro 5300) – £1,999 / $1,999
- 27in iMac (3.8GHz, i7, 512GB SSD, Radeon Pro 5500 XT) – £2,299 / $2,299
What will the new 32in iMac offer?
Despite the possibility that the larger iMac may not make an appearance until 2022, the rumour mill is in full swing, giving us a decent idea of what to expect from the next-gen iMac.
New Apple Silicon chip
Of course, the main driver behind the update is Apple’s commitment to transition its Mac range from Intel to its own Apple Silicon chipset. It started with the M1 processor in the late 2020 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro range, which has since made its way to the 24in iMac – and the iPad Pro (2021) too!
Following that trend, you might assume the M1 is the chip of choice for the larger iMac, but Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman thinks differently. In an early July 2021 instalment of his Power On newsletter, Gurman doesn’t think “that Apple will launch the larger model with the same M1 chip that’s in the smaller model”.
That could mean that the big iMac uses either the M1 Pro or M1 Max that are included in the new 14in and 16in MacBook Pros, or, more likely, it’ll utilise the M1 Ultra found in the impressively powerful Mac Studio.
Redesigned form factor
The key feature of the smaller 24in iMac, aside from the transition to Apple Silicon, was its redesigned form factor, offering an all-in-one thinner than most alternatives in a variety of colours that reflect the old Apple G2 from the early noughties. The bezels shrank dramatically, allowing Apple to expand screen size without much of an impact on the overall form factor, making way for a sleeker, more modern-looking iMac.
It’s the latest in a long line of product redesigns as Apple looks to unify the design of its range. The industrial angular look originally exclusive to the iPad Pro has expanded to the iPhone 12 &
13, iPad Air and
iPad Mini 6, and the
Apple Watch Series 7.
With Apple’s obvious desire to unify the design of its products, it’s safe to assume that the 27in iMac will get a redesign in a similar vein to that of the 24in iMac, featuring a reduction of bezels and the slimming of the overall form factor alongside other hardware improvements.
What’s unclear is whether it’ll be available in the same bright colours; while standard products like the
iPhone 13 and
iPad Air are available in a variety of fun colours, Pro-level products like the
iPad Pro and
iPhone 13 Pro are considerably more muted.
The colour scheme likely depends on who Apple thinks will use the iMac – while the 24in iMac is for everyday use, the expected use of the larger model in offices and other professional environments may limit just how bright and vibrant the finish will be.
With Apple shrinking the bezels of the 21.5in iMac to make way for a larger 24in display, it’s safe to assume that the same will happen with the 27in iMac. Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman suggested as much in an early July 2021 edition of his
Power On newsletter, claiming that the new model will have a “jumbo” display, although he doesn’t go into specifics.
That echoes earlier claims from
leaker l0vetodream, who suggested that the larger iMac’s “screen is really big, bigger than the biggest one”.
Some of the more enthusiastic pundits suggest Apple could increase the display to 32in to reflect that of Apple’s Pro XDR monitor, a display that is said to share its design language with the new iMac. However, if l0vetodream is accurate, it could measure in slightly bigger than the existing 32in monitor – the biggest Apple currently manufactures.
It’s worth noting, however, that there are conflicting rumours when it comes to the display department. While several leakers are confident that something bigger is coming,
analyst Ross Young suggests that a 27in MiniLED screen is headed to an iMac in Q1 2022, complete with ProMotion tech ranging from 24Hz to 120Hz.
Young has a pretty good track record when it comes to displaying tech – he correctly predicted the iPhone 12 would skip ProMotion, and he was on the money with his Mini-LED MacBook Pro prediction too – but as with all leaks and rumours, it’s worth taking with a pinch of salt.
Face ID for iMac
Face ID was first rumoured to be a feature of the 24in iMac, but as we now know, that never arrived.
Bloomberg reported that Apple had initially planned to include Face ID on the new model, but that it was eventually pushed back.
In the report, Mark Gurman explains that, unlike iPhones and iPads, Mac displays are significantly thinner, making it harder to include the tech required for Face ID to work.
That said, Gurman is confident that Face ID will make an appearance on the Mac within the “next couple of years”. Given the current suggestion that the larger iMac may not make its debut until 2022, it’s possible that Apple could take the extra development time to successfully implement Face ID on the upcoming model.
If it does feature, it’s also unclear if this would be within the computer’s bezel or in a notch – something Apple has now introduced to the MacBook Pro range, so it may be willing to extend to its iMacs.
What would you like to see from the next-gen iMac? Let us know on