After 5 years of existence, the Apple Thunderbolt Display has been discontinued.
In a statement to iMore, an Apple spokesperson said the following:
We’re discontinuing the Apple Thunderbolt Display. It will be available through Apple.com, Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers while supplies last. There are a number of great third-party options available for Mac users.
Going back a couple weeks, it was also iMore’s Rene Ritchie who dispelled rumors that Apple would be presenting a new 5K Thunderbolt Display with a built-in GPU at WWDC 2016. The built-in GPU would possibly allow for devices like the MacBook to be used with the 5K Thunderbolt Display with full resolution.
Ritchie’s source didn’t evidently deny the existence of this mythical wonder, so it could be that Apple is saving its release for when they announce the rumored new MacBook Pro models with a new OLED display replacing the top row of function keys.
Given how long Apple has sold their Thunderbolt Display – now almost 2 years since their release of the first 5K iMac – Apple’s discontinuation of the display indicates that they recognize that the display is outdated at this point. What they plan to do in the future is still unknown.
Apple remained elusive in their statement, directing potential customers to “third-party options” for now, but they curiously sell no such third-party options in their own store. As long as that continues, it might be safe to guess that odds are in favor of Apple releasing their 5K revision this year.
It’s important to remember that no real evidence of a 5K Thunderbolt Display has surfaced so far. However, it would be smart for those interested to wait for Apple’s announcement of new MacBook Pro models, when an announcement of the 5K Thunderbolt Display would be logical.