With all the buzz about MacBooks, iPhones, and AirPods, it's easy to forget what used to be Apple's core product line and what they were founded on. 2016 saw no major desktop releases from Apple, but CEO Tim Cook hasn't forgotten about them or so he's said. In an internal memo obtained by TechCrunch, Cook made it clear that great desktops would be part of Apple's roadmap in the future. Previous rumors centered on the belief that Apple would no longer pursue desktops because the mobile market was growing so quickly.
Cook reassured Apple employees that nobody should worry about the issue. He cited key benefits of desktops over portable devices like better performance, higher storage capacity, and a greater variety of I/O. That's definitely a welcomed change of pace over Apple's recent product launches. The desktop refresh cycle at Apple is much slower than with the iPhone and MacBook.
Given that the current 5K iMac is still performing well (uses a Core i5 Skylake on the base model), Apple wanted to focus elsewhere for the time being. On the other hand, hardcore Mac users certainly have valid reasons to complain with base iMacs still using standard disk drives and the Mac Pro not receiving any updates whatsoever in three years.
Alluding to the recent AirPods release, Tim Cook maintained that Apple will focus on bring together both their hardware and software teams. This is what gave them success in the past and also what Cook hopes will make Apple successful in the future. The latter part of the memo was a bit of a pep talk for employees. Cook touched on renewable energy and the company's culture in what amounts to a very traditional end of year memo.
There was no mention however of whether Apple will be focusing on the iMac or Mac Pro but regardless of your opinion on Apple, expect to see many new products in the coming months.