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I can't quite put my finger on it, but Apple products feel like they've lost their soul. I remember buying my first Apple computer back in 2004, a 12" iBook G4. It was mesmerizingly good. It wasn't objectively the fastest and I'm sure other people can point to other computers that ticked more boxes, but the computer just made me want to use it, look at it, and admire it--the green glow of the power connector ring, the white cables, the "breathing" sleep light, the high quality polycarbonate, the FireWire port in case you wanted to connect a pro-level video camera--it all screamed "I'm a high quality product with a soul." Not to mention that OS X seemed much more stable than it is today.

I have a 2018 MacBook Pro and while I think it's objectively the best MacBook Pro they've ever made, it's just depressing to use. It feels like all the desire has been sucked out of it. It doesn't feel like Apple is making the best computer they can make, it feels like they're making the best computer for their bottom line. Most importantly, it feels like Apple has lost respect for their customers.

This. It's hard to explain but it's the same with the keynote events. They used to be exciting to particular class of nerd such as me. Now they seem to be more about the celebrities in the audience and the cheesy looking people in the product videos.

I assumed that they were just switching to a more popular and lucrative demographic based of who buys iPhones.

The current Apple makes more money now but the products and the way they are marketed are boring IMHO (subjective I know).

It would help if the MBP were actually a professional level device instead of being a souped-up, hyper-expensive consumer laptop.

That would mean more ports, a higher minimum spec, and the ability to upgrade the internals. The touchbar could be dropped entirely, it’s really just a marketing gimmick.

The lack of touchbar (retaining the touchID login) is one of the reasons I'm digging the latest MB Air. The ports issue... I'm not sure if Apple will ever resolve that.

How's the screen? I've heard it's less bright than the MBP.

I mean you could compare the figures for the nits but, as an example, I feel like my retinas are burning off at 100% brightness.

And MagSafe. Please bring back MagSafe.

I agree it should be an option, but I do really like being able to use one connector to satisfy all my charging, keyboarding, mousing, videoing, sounding, and other peripheraling needs.

A MagSafe-like magnetic connector that spoke USB 3.1 or whatever Type C uses would be perfection and would make me seriously consider buying a modern Mac.

I own the very same 12" iBook G4 from 2004, and it ran Mac OS X 10.3 Panther. It was a beauty.

But the market has shifted dramatically since 2004. Outside of software devs and people who need laptops for work/school, the number of people who own a personal laptop has significantly decreased since. (can google stats if needed) Plus there's a whole demographic of people who have never owned a laptop and don't see the need.

I'm a techie and I haven't owned a personal laptop since 2007. I travel with my iPhone and iPad Air 2, and they're more than good enough for my needs. I have Linux desktops at home/work. Even if Apple made a really innovative laptop computer today, its target market is a lot smaller than it was in 2004.

I suspect Apple is working through a long-term secret plan to phase out all MacOS products and replace them with upgraded iPad Pro devices instead. With some increased hardware resources and iOS enhancements, iPads could eventually meet the needs of most knowledge workers and content creators. Until that plan comes to fruition I suspect Apple will put minimal effort into their existing line of laptops and desktops.

A vocal minority of power users and developers will hate being forced onto iOS, but most customers will be satisfied. And Apple will be able to consolidate their engineering work behind a single platform.

What's happening is that it's been too long since they introduced something that was not an incremental upgrade.

I don't agree that's a sufficient explanation. The current line of MacBook pros marked a big departure in design. The problem was a lot of the design changes were of questionable merit.

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