Apple Store is down: MacBook Pro refresh incoming

It comes as little surprise, given the leaks, speculation and rumor in the lead-up to today, but the Apple Store is down. We're guessing that Apple's busy web-store elves are hurriedly working on slotting new MacBook Pro notebooks into the virtual shelves, ahead of an official debut later today.

As for what those fresh MacBook Pro units will bring, we're expecting lashings of Sandy Bridge across the board and a switch in graphics strategy. NVIDIA is believed to be out, replaced by AMD Radeon GPUs on the 15- and 17-inch machines and integrated graphics alone on the 13-inchers.

There's also been plenty of talk about Apple Thunderbolt, the company's branded version of Intel's Light Peak connection technology. That promises 10GBs transfer rates, although from what we've seen there are still plenty of legacy connectors to keep us happy.

We'll know all the details very soon; the Apple Store usually returns at around 8am EST, which is only an hour away.