The first OLED MacBook may arrive in early 2024 — why it'll be thinner, lighter

Apple MacBook Pro 2021 (14-inch)
Apple MacBook Pro 2021 (14-inch) (Image credit: Future)

Apple analyst and leaker Ming-Chi Kuo is spilling the beans again, and this time, he's flapping his gums about the Cupertino-based tech giant's plans of unleashing a brand spankin' new MacBook with an OLED panel next year.

OLED displays deliver truer blacks, which offer high contrast ratios, but in addition to a more visually pleasing display, Kuo claims that OLED panels will allow MacBooks to be thinner and lighter.

An OLED MacBook is headed your way

In a series of tweets, Kuo claimed that an OLED-outfitted MacBook is poised to be released in early 2024. As mentioned, the famed Apple analyst said that an OLED panel will allow MacBooks to be slimmer and more lightweight.

You may be wondering, "How could an OLED display make a laptop lighter?" Easy. OLED displays are lighter than LCD panels because they use plastic instead of glass, allowing OEMs to build thinner and lighter laptops for better portability and convenience. 

As MacRumors pointed out, all existing MacBooks have LCD panels. The current-gen 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro sport LCD displays with mini-LED backlighting. OLED displays, on the other hand, don't require backlighting at all. Without diving into too much technical jargon, due to backlighting, blacks on LCD screens look off-black — or even dark gray-ish. On an OLED panel, however, the pixels where blacks are present are completely turned off, providing images that really pop.


LCD vs. OLED (Image credit: Asus)

As a cherry on top, OLED displays are more energy efficient, allowing the laptop to last longer on a charge. In other words, yes, this means that the 2024 OLED-packed MacBook should have an impressive battery runtime — and MacBooks already top the list of laptops with the best battery life.

Kuo didn't delve into whether the upcoming OLED MacBook is a Pro or Air, but there's a good chance that it may be the latter. As MacRumors highlighted, Ross Young, another analyst who has his finger on the pulse, said that Apple is reportedly planning to release a 13-inch, OLED-outfitted MacBook Air in 2024. Young also mentioned that the iPad Pro may get the OLED special, too, in new 11-inch and 13-inch iterations.

Of course, all of these rumors from Kuo and Young are conjecture, and Apple may change its roadmap in the future, so be sure to take these spilled beans with a grain of salt.

Kimberly Gedeon

Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!