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The MacBook Pro Is Dead. Long Live the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar (andrewchidden.com)
6 points by typealias on Aug 21, 2018 | hide | past | favorite | 4 comments

When the TouchBar was unveiled, I thought it seemed kind of gimmicky.

Last summer, I got a MacBook Pro with TouchBar, and I've used it almost every day since then. The TouchBar is less gimmicky than I had initially thought... but I still don't think it's that useful. Certain aspects are nifty (anything with a slider; emojis), certain things are "meh" (mute; extra functionality), and some things I very much dislike (the escape key not being a key at all anymore).

I remember before the TouchBar was actually unveiled there had been some rumors that Apple might show off a new keyboard where the keys had e-ink displays, such that you could change every key of the keyboard instantly but it would still be a physical keyboard (not a touchscreen). I would have preferred that, and I still would. I guess we'll see what the future has in store!

I suspect that what makes Apple so keen to maintain the Touch Bar, in spite of a lack of adoption after two years is a major long term change. Few things have benefited from so much patience; all those who did were significant interaction changes that absolutely deserved it, but were not properly foreseen.

In this case, I see that the touch bar is expected to replace more of the keyboard and trackpad. It might use the same haptic technology as the iPhone’s home button since the iPhone 7, and have fixed groves for keys; it might use a material a bit more comfortable for repeated strike — but it feel very unclear why Apple would have not taken over touch screen for it’s laptop line.

Of course touchbar customization is easy and cool, but still the major problems are not fixed:

1. HW - The keyboard became unusable. Less, not more external connectors. Less memory than comparable laptops for half the money.

2. SW - OS updates became unusable. I'm still on El Capitan, but wished I was still on Snow Leopard. It only got downhill after that.

The Mac as Nr 1 dev laptop IS dead.

The Donglebook pro has already been named appropriately.

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