Saturday, October 29, 2016

MacBook Pro with touch bar, a natural evolution

Apple released a new series of MacBook Pro.

A unique feature of the new MacBook Pro is the touch bar. It is equipped on the upper end of the keyboard. It works as a series of function keys, while is can be customized according to the application you are using. Traditional function keys are omitted.

I think it is quite logical evolution for Mac, or PC as well. There are several mechanical keys whose necessity is doubtful. Many function keys are also not used by most users.

In addition, young users are accustomed to the virtual keyboard on the touch panel. The virtual keyboard can be rearranged to be optimized for the usage of each application. It is inconvenient that the names printed on each key top cannot be altered. Previously, a few keyboards whose key tops equip a display were sold, but they were not spread because of low cost-performance. Apple is perhaps planning to replace all of the keys to touch bar or something like it.

One of the new models, which is the cheapest, does not equip a touch bar. This MacBook Pro is thinner and lighter than MacBook Air with almost the same footprint size. Thus, MacBook is overwhelming MacBook Air. Apple seems to eliminate MacBook Air.

No current USB ports are attached in the new MacBook Pro series. Instead, they equip multiple Thunderbolt 3 ports. Thunderbolt 3 is compatible to USB type-C. USB type-C is promised to be the standard in the next generation mobile communication device, admitted by the EU. Therefore, Apple’s decision is no more ridiculous. Nonetheless, the lack of USB 3.0 ports will be a serious shortcoming of the new MacBook Pro because most companies will not be able to adapt the new standard so fast.

By the way, Apple reported recently that its annual profit fell for the first time in these 15 years. Diminished sales of iPhone seem to be one of the principal causes. Apple rose the minimum price of MacBook series from 899 USD (MacBook Air 11 inch) to 1,499 USD (MacBook Pro 13 inch without touch bar). It may be the intention of Apple not to let the price of each gadget down anymore.

The sales of PC is also decreasing. However, PC will not perish at least within this decade, I guess.

I bought MacBook 2016 model in this spring. I am satisfied to its usability, except the length of battery life. I will not buy the new MacBook Pro. But it made me excited.

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