According to Apple experts DigiTimes, Apple is likely to launch its new MacBook Pro lineup with “Retina Display” resolution of 2880 by  1800 pixels in the spring of 2012.  This also coincides with the rumored release date of the new iPad 3 which also includes a Retina Display.  The new display would double the current resolution of the MacBook Pro which means Apple would produce four times the number of pixels – definitely a “pro” upgrade!  This is good news for developers as they could easily scale existing artwork.  Currently, the highest configurated 17-inch MacBook Pro has 1920 x 1200 pixels.

The new ultra-clear resolution is rumored to be debuting in the new slimmed down 15-inch MacBook Air, which was also rumored to be launched in the spring of 2012. The current version supports 1440 x 900 pixels – quite the improvement!

We’ve been hearing rumors about these ultra clear resolution displays but didn’t expect them to be coming so soon.  That said, support has been building.  Intel’s new Ivy Bridge processors can support resolutions as high as 4096 x 4096 and Apple has added a new “HiDPI” mode in Lion that supports the new larger display. Apple has also added high resolution artwork in Lion with desktop pictures at 3200 x 2000 pixels and 1024 x 1024 pixel icons.  Awesome right?

This is sure to spur a whole new round of competition in the notebook industry according to sources in the upstream supply chain, “While the prevailing MacBook models have displays with resolutions ranging from 1680 by 1050 pixels to 1280 by 800 pixels, the ultra-high resolution of the new MacBook Pro will further differentiate Apple’s products from other brands.”

How will other brands in the notebook industry compete with Apple’s crystal clear display?  Acer and Asustek Computer are planning to launch high-end Ultrabook notebooks with 1920 x 1080 in the spring, compared to the 1366 by 768 which is currently offered.   Samsung is rumored to have its own high pixel 2560 x 1600 11.6 inch display for a Galaxy Tab, which could easily be used for a laptop as well.

What’s the potential downside of having this ultra-clear new display you ask? It takes a lot of juice to run these displays (like one machine running four monitors) so let’s hope Apple figures out how to do so without killing performance.   Do you have any other concerns about the new upgrade? Let us know in the comments below!