If you'd asked me around this time last year, I might have told you that Apple had apparently lost its interest in the professional market altogether. Instead, last April the company announced that not only was it readying up the iMac Pro, but that a new Mac Pro was also in the works. It's been a year now, so you could be forgiven for asking where it is. TechCrunch was one of a few outlets that was recently invited to talk to Apple about the future of its Pro offerings. Here's the short version: the new, modular Mac Pro "will not arrive before 2019."
To assuage the concerns of Pro users who feel left out in the cold, Apple says it has created a group called the Pro Workflow Team. While this is the first time it's been mentioned publicly, the team has apparently been hard at work working directly with both hired and contracted creators to figure out exactly what sort of hardware and software Pro users need. Also, by working directly with users, Apple can tease out the sort of niggling performance problems that don't show up in your usual type of benchmark.
The idea is that Apple will take the lessons learned by the Pro Workflow Team and apply them to the new Mac Pro. That all sounds great, but unfortunately Apple didn't really have anything interesting to share about the upcoming hardware itself. John Ternus, Apple's VP of hardware engineering and head of the Pro Workflow Team, says that the machine will definitely be based on a modular design and that a new display is also coming, but aside from that there's precious little information about what kind of hardware could end up in the next Mac Pro.
While some might view this announcement as an acknowledgement of a delay, that's not the case, according to Ternus. TechCrunch quotes him as saying "I don't think the timeline has fundamentally changed." When Apple announced a revised Mac Pro last year, the company was clear that the machine was not slated for release in 2017, but didn't go so far as to say it would be out in 2018 either. Given Apple's typical caginess regarding new products, we'll probably have to wait until next year to hear anything else.