Apple’s latest OS X El Capitan beta reportedly includes a few hidden references to hardware that has yet to be seen in Apple devices, fueling conjecture that a new 21.5-inch iMac with a 4K display is coming soon. A tipster pointed 9 to 5 Mac toward the relevant text strings. One shows an Apple-made display with a resolution of 4096×2304, and another shows a reference to Broad-well’s Iris Pro 6200 GPU. Most outlets, 9 to 5 Mac included, have assumed that this is some kind of 21.5-inch 4K iMac, which makes sense since current iMac’s use Iris Pro 5200 GPU’s.
The code discovered in the latest El Capitan beta suggests the OS supports a 4096 x 2304 Retina display, a resolution slightly larger than traditional 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) that Apple hasn’t used in a product yet. With the 27-inch iMac featuring a 5120 x 2880 display, this new resolution could be used for an upgraded 21.5-inch iMac featuring a Retina display. At 21.5-inches, a display resolution of 4096 x 2304 would equate to a pixel density of 219 PPI, similar to the 5K 27-inch iMac’s 218 PPI. While this 4K-like resolution isn’t one we’ve seen before, Apple usually forgoes industry standard resolutions for pixel concentration consistence across their Retina products.
EI Capitan X OS (Operating System)
The new El Capitan beta also references a selection of new GPU’s that haven’t been seen in any current-generation iMac’s. The GPU’s referenced include Intel’s new Iris Pro Graphics 6200 found in their new Broad-well CPU’s, and new AMD Radeon GPU’s including the R9 M395 and R9 M395X. On a less exciting note, El Capitan carries a few references to a new Apple Bluetooth Remote Control as well, featuring Bluetooth and infrared affinity, and a multi-touch track-pad. There are no hints as to when Apple may announce a new 21.5-inch iMac or a new Bluetooth Remote Control, even though Apple typically declares new iMac’s around October. El Capitan is set for a final release this fall.