Ming-Chi Kuo

Ming-Chi Kuo

Ming-Chi Kuo is a renowned Apple analyst, with over 10 years of experience reporting on Apple with data from the supply chain. Much of what we learn about upcoming products, delays, and potential price points are derived from Kuo's reports.

● Analyst at TF International
● KGI from 2013-2018
● Started career at Digitimes in 2010
● Well respected analyst with a good track record
● Reported many of the iPhone X details first
● Connections throughout the supply chain

Page last updated:


Ming-Chi Kuo has been a reliable source of solid data on Apple products over the years. Despite Tim Cook insisting that supply-chain-sourced data is a terrible way to make predictions, Kuo's track record is very high.

Kuo's strong points as a leaker are device-specific details and specs. These can sometimes include finer points like color, size, chipsets, and ports. Device names and release dates are often decided too late in production to be predicted accurately. His accuracy is historically strong, with some reports coming to fruition years after his predictions.

Financial Guidance

Ming-Chi Kuo not only uses obtained data to predict future Apple products but provides guidance for how well a product might sell. He arrives at these numbers based on volumes of component orders, then derives what they expect to sell based on previous supply chain inventory reports.

These reports can be accurate, but as Apple's supply chain is very diverse, knowing one product component order doesn't always provide the fullest picture.

Ming-Chi Kuo's Product Predictions

The following are details about products provided by Kuo through his various reports received over time.

"iPhone 13"

Mockup of an Mockup of an "iPhone 13"

The "iPhone 13" is rumored to have improved ultra-wide cameras at f1.8 and 6P vs the current cameras at ƒ/2.4 5P. These improvements would greatly increase low-light photography with this lens.

With the iPhone 12iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max shipping, Ming-Chi Kuo comments that 5G is not quite ready yet. It will likely be more important in the 2021 lineup.

The "iPhone 13" is expected to use soft board battery technology which was previously used to improve the antennas in the iPhone. The technology will save internal space and reduce costs.

Apple isn't expected to remove the Lightning port in the 2021 iPhone but may do so in the "iPhone 14" or later. USB-C will never be considered for the iPhone since Apple would lose the MFi program.

iPhone Fold could launch in 2023 with 8-inch QHD display. Kuo expects foldable iPhones to drive the next super cycle.

"Apple Glass" and VR

“Apple Glass” concept by iSpazio Ming-Chi Kuo was among the first to rumor “Apple Glass;” concept by iSpazio

Well before the recent Jon Prosser leak surrounding "Apple Glass" and its release, Kuo was reporting on the technology. There are two distinct devices. One is an AR or mixed-reality headset that supports both VR and AR. The other is a set of glasses, or "Apple Glass."

The details surrounding the device match with more recent rumors. Ming-Chi Kuo noted that the device will rely heavily on the iPhone, just like the Apple Watch did initially. These details have since been corroborated by other leaks, with only the release date still in question.

A report in May revealed that the Apple AR glasses wouldn't arrive until 2022, which was contested by Prosser, who expects them by the end of 2021. Kuo believes an AR device will launch in 2021 but did not specify if it was "Apple Glass" or a rumored headset.

Kuo believes the VR headset will arrive in 2022 at a $1,000 price point. The "Apple Glass" would then arrive sometime in 2025 and a contact lens device could come as soon as 2030.

The VR headset is expected to have 15 cameras for environment and object tracking. It will also feature a passthrough mode that lets wearers see the environment around them.

Mac

Ming-Chi Kuo expects a “14-inch MacBook Pro” to ship in 2021 Ming-Chi Kuo expects a “14-inch MacBook Pro” to ship in 2021

Ming-Chi Kuo had announced that he expected the first "ARM Mac" to be announced in the first half of 2021 with Apple Silicon, codenamed 1H21. Apple announced Macs that use the M1 processor in November 2020, so Kuo missed this prediction by a few months.

Several reports point to mini LED being used in multiple products in 2020, including a 14-inch MacBook Pro and a 24-inch iMac. The iPad Pro houses mini-LED, but the new 24-inch iMac does not.

Apple is expected to use mini LED in 2021 MacBook Pro models. Kuo also reports that the 2022 MacBook Air will be "more affordable" than the current model.

There will be an HDMI port and SD card slot in the new MacBook Pros. This is due to user demand wanting alternate port options beyond Thunderbolt.

iPad

Kuo predicts a redesigned iPad mini 6 with a 9-inch screen in early 2021 with a similar design to the iPad Air 4. The standard iPad received an update in 2020 with an A12 chipset, just as Kuo had previously stated.

Reports indicate a late 2021 release of the updated iPad mini, so the earliest it could launch is July.

Ming-Chi Kuo's History

Ming-Chi Kuo has been a well-known Apple analyst for the past decade. His career first came into the spotlight while working at Digitimes, stating ship windows of unreleased iPhone 4 models. He went to work for Concord Securities in 2011, then KGI Securities in 2013.

There he spent the better part of a decade making a name for himself in the Apple rumors sector. When Mark Gurman didn't have insider information, Kuo usually did. Between the two of them, much of Apple's announcements were known well before being made public.

Kuo left KGI in 2018 to join with Chinese firm TF International. He still works there today and continues to provide highly accurate reports and analyses of Apple and its plans.

Timeline of Reports

The following is a timeline of every relevant report from Ming-Chi Kuo predicting a new product or feature. Most predictions pertain to whatever the next iPhone will be, but have expanded to encompass nearly every Apple product during his career.

Product names like “iPhone X” or “Pro Display XDR” were not known until very close to the announcement, so for simplicity’s sake, the correct product name will be referred to in quotes.

2021

May

April

March

  • "iPhone 13 Pro Max" to have f1.5 aperture 7P wide angle lens
  • Apple VR in 2022 at $1000, "Apple Glass" in 2025, contact lens in 2030
  • "iPhone 13" not moving to USB-C or gaining Touch ID in power button

February

  • Apple to work with Hyundai on Apple Car using E-GMP platform
  • Two new MacBook Pro models will have SD card slots and HDMI port

January

2020

December

November

September

  • 120Hz not coming to "iPhone 12" and Touch ID in top button in more devices in 2021
  • iPad Pro to be the first device with Mini LED display 

August

July

June

May

April

March

February

January

  • 2021 iPhone will have a Touch ID power button and LCD.
  • ”iPhone SE,” "AirTags," small AirPower-like mat, 2020 iPad Pro, “AirPods Studio,” 2020 MacBook Air, and 13-inch MacBook Pro should ship in the first half of 2020.
  • All four “iPhone 12” are on schedule to launch in fall 2020, and will include sub-6GHz and mmWave models.

2019

December

November

October

September

August

July

April

March

February

2018

December

November

October

September

August

July

June

April

March

February

January

2017

December

November

October

August

July

May

March

February

January

2016

November

October

September

August

  • ”10.5-inch iPad Pro” expected in 2017, AMOLED iPad in 2018.
  • “Apple Watch Series 2” with a faster chip, GPS, barometer, larger battery, and same thickness to launch in 2016.

May

April

March

February

January

2015

December

November

September

August

July

  • Apple Watch refresh expected with “sport models” in yellow and rose gold, a new iMac and iPad mini expected in 2015.

June

May

April

March

February

January

2014

November

October

September

April

Ming-Chi Kuo continues to provide reports from his current place of work, TF International.

 
 

Ming-Chi Kuo Related Stories