Report: Apple to implement auto-switching on next-gen MacBook Pro

Apple is planning to improve the graphic-switching capability in the next generation of MacBook Pro laptops, according to a new report.

Apple is planning to improve the graphic-switching capability in the next generation of MacBook Pro laptops, according to a new report.

According to an unsourced report on AppleInsider, the Cupertino, Calif.-based company is exploring the use of automatic switching between the integrated and discrete graphics processors in select MacBook Pro models.

Currently, the company's 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pro models use switchable graphics (Nvidia GeForce 9400M, 9600M GT) that require the user to manually select the switch and subsequently log out to make the change.

According to the report, it's been speculated that the recent licensing spat between Intel and Nvidia -- one the former graphics supplier to Apple's MacBooks, the other the current -- may be the reason why the existing MacBook Pro line hasn't seen a recent refresh. (It's been more than 16 months, an unusually long time for Apple.)

Nvidia recently introduced its Optimus technology for notebooks, which is designed to work with Intel Nehalem architecture and includes automatic switchable graphics.

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