A few days ago Apple unveiled the new MacBook Pro for 2016, a much awaited upgrade that everyone was waiting for. The new MacBook Pro is thinner, lighter and obviously faster than the previous generation MacBook Pros. Design wise the new MacBook looks almost identical to the previous models with thinner display and Keyboard bezels and an extra-large Touch Pad. The 15 inch model features new 67% brighter Retina display, Intel’s new generation 2.6GHz core -i7 processor, 16GB of RAM and Radeon Pro 450 graphics card, and four USB Type-C connectors. According to Apple the new MacBooks performs 130% faster in gaming than the previous models. But the spot light of the event was the new Touch Bar that Apple introduces with the Mid-range 13’ model and 15’ model.
Apple did another courageous thing with the new MacBooks by removing the function Keys and replacing it with the touch sensitive retina display strip, Apple is calling it the Touch Bar. The Touch Bar not only replaces the function keys but it also give you control over screen brightness, media controls and some native app controls. Apple demonstrated it by showing how you can use it to scrub through videos, navigate through entire time line in Final Cut, and use it as a toolbar shortcut for Microsoft office or to send Emojis via iMessage. The Touch Bar can also provides you some quick type suggestions while using the keyboard. Touch Bar was Apple’s take on bringing the touch controls to the MacBook without adding the touchscreen. The Touch Bar does look interesting and a cool feature to have but Apple selling it as a flagship feature and we are not yet sure how many people are actually going to use it.
The Touch Bar feature could have been a real hit if Apple has launched it three years ago when Windows Touch screen laptops were just starting to come in the market and nobody knew why they need one. That time could have been great for the Touch Bar, Apple could have said that “Look you don’t need a Touch screen, the Touch Bar will do everything you want to do with the touch controls”. But today Windows 10 is adapting to touch controls really fast and lots of applications are also started to take the full advantage of the wide touch screens. With the new Surface Book Pro, Surface Studio and Surface Dial Microsoft just showed us Touch Screen computers are the future.
Apple is charging you $300 extra if you want that Touch Bar on your MacBook and we are yet to see how many people are actually going to use it or how developers are going to come up with some ground breaking ideas for Touch Bar that will make it more useful feature to have than just a gimmick. What are your thoughts? Are you willing to pay $300 extra just to have a touch strip on your MacBook?
Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section.