Apple MacBook Pro
Apple's MacBook Pro will get a major update in the fourth quarter of 2016, analyst claims Apple

Apple is preparing to make the most significant update yet to its MacBook Pro line-up later this year. The company will reveal new versions of both the 13in and 15in Pro laptops in the fourth quarter of 2016, claims popular analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

As well as being thinner and light than ever (and no doubt more powerful, too), the new MacBook Pros will feature an OLED "display touch bar" which will sit at the top of the keyboard and replace the row of function keys found on current MacBooks.

Kuo also claims the new laptops will include Touch ID, the fingerprint sensor used to unlock the iPhone and iPad. This will also likely to be used on the MacBook to pay for items in the iTunes and App stores.

A report by the KGI Strategies analyst states: "While long overlooked, the MacBook line is the brightest spot for Apple's 2016 roll-outs.

This is particularly true of the two new MacBook Pro models, to be introduced in 4Q16, as they will have a thinner and lighter form factor, Touch ID, use OLED display touch bar (to replace physical function keys, located above the keyboard) and adopt USB-C / Thunderbolt 3."

Kuo goes on to say the upgrades will be the "most significant upgrade ever undertaken by Apple", reports MacRumors.

The analyst also claims Apple will introduce a 13in version of its regular MacBook, an inch larger than the current model. These will be the mid-range of Apple's laptop line-up, with the refreshed Pros sitting at the top and the Air, apparently with lower prices, sitting at the entry-level.

All of this suggests we won't see any major laptop updates from Apple at WWDC, the company's annual developer conference which takes place in June. A fourth quarter launch suggests the new Pros will likely be launched around October, a month after the iPhone 7.