Apple unveils groundbreaking new MacBook Pro with revolutionary Touch Bar and huge Force Touch trackpad

Apple today introduced the thinnest and lightest MacBook Pro ever, along with a breakthrough interface that replaces the traditional row of function keys with a brilliant, Retina-quality Multi-Touch display called the Touch Bar.

The new MacBook Pro features Apple’s brightest and most colorful Retina display yet, the security and convenience of Touch ID, a more responsive keyboard, a larger Force Touch trackpad and an audio system with double the dynamic range. It’s also the most powerful MacBook Pro ever, featuring sixth-generation quad-core and dual-core processors, up to 2.3 times the graphics performance over the previous generation, super-fast SSDs and up to four Thunderbolt 3 ports.

The Touch Bar places controls right at the user’s fingertips and adapts when using the system or apps like Mail, Finder, Calendar, Numbers, GarageBand, Final Cut Pro X and many more, including third-party apps. For example, the Touch Bar can show Tabs and Favorites in Safari, enable easy access to emoji in Messages, provide a simple way to edit images or scrub through videos in Photos and so much more.

The all-new MacBook Pro introduces the revolutionary Touch Bar and breakthrough performance in Apple's thinnest and lightest pro design ever.
The all-new MacBook Pro introduces the revolutionary Touch Bar and breakthrough performance in Apple’s thinnest and lightest pro design ever.

“This week marks the 25th anniversary of Apple’s first notebook; through the years each generation has introduced new innovations and capabilities, and it’s fitting that this all-new generation of MacBook Pro is the biggest leap forward yet,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, in a statement. “With the groundbreaking new Touch Bar, the convenience of Touch ID, the best Mac display ever, powerful performance, improved audio, blazing fast storage and Thunderbolt 3 connectivity in our thinnest and lightest pro notebook yet, the new MacBook Pro is the most advanced notebook ever made.”

Thinnest and Lightest MacBook Pro Ever

Building on innovations pioneered in MacBook, the new MacBook Pro features an entirely new enclosure design and all-metal unibody construction that creates an incredibly rigid and dense notebook that is amazingly thin and light. At just 14.9 mm thin, the 13-inch MacBook Pro is 17 percent thinner and 23 percent less volume than the previous generation, and nearly half a pound lighter at just three pounds. The new 15-inch MacBook Pro, at just 15.5 mm thin, is 14 percent thinner and 20 percent less volume than before, and weighing just four pounds, is nearly half a pound lighter.

Touch ID Comes to the Mac

Integrated into the power button is the convenience and security of Touch ID, one of the great features customers have come to know and love from their iPhone and iPad. Once you enroll your fingerprint in Touch ID on your MacBook Pro, you can quickly unlock your Mac, switch user accounts and make secure purchases with Apple Pay on the web with a single touch. Touch ID enables a quick, accurate reading of your fingerprint and uses sophisticated algorithms to recognize and match it with the Secure Enclave in the new Apple T1 chip.

Apple’s Brightest, Most Colorful Notebook Display

The best Mac display ever delivers images that are more vivid, reveal even greater detail and appear more lifelike than ever. As thin as a MacBook display at .88 mm, the Retina display on the new MacBook Pro at 500 nits of brightness, is an amazing 67 percent brighter than the previous generation, features 67 percent more contrast and is the first Mac notebook display to support a wider color gamut. And with power-saving technologies like a larger pixel aperture, a variable refresh rate and more power-efficient LEDs, the display consumes 30 percent less energy than before.

The Most Powerful MacBook Pro Yet

Powerful processors, cutting-edge graphics, blazing-fast SSDs, high-speed memory and an advanced thermal architecture deliver amazing pro-level performance in a dramatically thinner enclosure. Sixth-generation dual-core Core i5 with eDRAM, dual-core Core i7 with eDRAM and quad-core Core i7 Intel processors deliver pro-level processing performance while conserving energy. The new 15-inch MacBook Pro features powerful Radeon Pro discrete graphics delivering up to 2.3 times more performance than the previous generation; while the 13-inch MacBook Pro comes with Intel Iris Graphics that are up to two times faster than before. All models feature SSDs with sequential read speeds over 3GBps and Thunderbolt 3 which consolidates data transfer, charging and twice the video bandwidth in a single port — allowing users to drive a 5K display and power their MacBook Pro with a single cable.

The New MacBook Pro Also Offers:

• Much larger Force Touch trackpads — 46 percent larger on the 13-inch MacBook Pro and twice as large on the 15-inch MacBook Pro;

• More responsive and comfortable typing on the keyboard with a second-generation butterfly mechanism;

• Louder, more true-to-life sound through speakers with double the dynamic range and improved bass;

• macOS Sierra, the world’s most advanced desktop operating system, with new features like Siri integration, Universal Clipboard, Apple Pay on the web and Photos, which helps you rediscover your meaningful memories, organize your library and perfect shots like a pro.

Pricing & Availability

• The 13-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,499 (US), features a 2.0 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.1 GHz, 8GB of memory and 256GB of flash storage, and ships today.

• The 13-inch MacBook Pro with the revolutionary Touch Bar and Touch ID starts at $1,799 (US), and features a 2.9 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.3 GHz, 8GB of memory and 256GB of flash storage, and ships in two to three weeks.

• The 15-inch MacBook Pro starts at $2,399 (US), features the revolutionary Touch Bar and Touch ID, a 2.6 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.5 GHz, 16GB of memory and 256GB of flash storage, and ships in two to three weeks.

• Additional technical specifications, configure-to-order options and accessories are available online at

Source: Apple Inc.

MacDailyNews Take: Lustworthy.

Wired hands on with Apple’s New MacBook Pro: It’s a whole new kind of laptop – October 27, 2016
CNET on the new MacBook Pro: Apple’s amazing strip show reinvents the notebook – October 27, 2016
Hands on with Apple’s new MacBook Pro: Looks and feels so good it’s unreal – October 27, 2016
Apple debuts three new TV ads for all-new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar – October 27, 2016


  1. Not even a 480… and you need two of those to match a single 1080 (even the mobile one)…

    I guess it lowers the bottom line on parts cost so apple can make more money though…

    1. Agreed.

      I thought that was quite lame, as well.

      The AMD Radeon 480 would have been a wonderful inclusion, or even upgrade option, but Apple went with the runt of AMD’s GPU family.

      Probably the only ‘mobile’ version available at the time of design. Bleh…

  2. So explain to me why Apple is using last year’s intel processor but demanding very high prices? Kaby Lake has been out for a month now and this is still using the previous generation. I just don’t understand. I know the speed difference is not all that much, but its just bad business to claim a top shelf price and not have the lastest processor.

    1. I too was hoping that Apple might put a 7xxx series cpu in these, but alas, looking at the specs of the 13″ P-book confirms that it uses the Intel Iris 550, which is used with the last gen Intel chip.

      The newer cpu uses Intel Iris 6xx series for its video processor.

      That’s a bummer.

  3. I’m guessing that the touch bar will make its way into the desktops with an update to the wireless keyboards.

    I’m very excited about the potential of USB-C connectors now. The period for adapters will last a while but hopefully this will be the standard port on all tech for the next 20 years. Now for Apple to ditch Lightning on the iOS side…

    1. I use a wireless keyboard and wireless trackpad with a 98″ LG 4K screen. Think of it as wall-screen computing. 🙂

      I would love to get a wireless keyboard with touch bar!

      Incidentally, I run the screen with a lowly 2016 MacBook tucked out of sight and it works great. Perfect way to demo software or work collaboratively.

      I have a maxed out windows desktop for major crunching, but would love a REAL Mac Pro to hook up to the wall screen.

  4. FYI: 16GB of RAM is what the MBP comes with, and that’s the maximum capacity. There’s no custom configuration with more RAM, and it certainly isn’t user-upgradeable. Thankfully, the internal SSD is fast because Pros will be experiencing perpetual page-outs from the swap file.

  5. I have a 2012 iMac it’s getting old, I want a larger screen, I do not care about laptop’s never did nor do I care about 4k or 5k with the same 27″ sized screen!!!

  6. Is anyone else wondering why Apple is using processors that were introduced over a year ago in their brand new MacBook Pros? Seems odd to me that they’re not using Intel’s Kaby Lake Core i7.
    The new laptops seem decent, but not compelling. The Touchbar is a nice feature, but not worth an upgrade by itself. And as usual, Apple overcharges for their storage upgrades, though that’s been their standard for as long as I can remember.

    1. Because the quad core Kaby lake processors aren’t shipping in volume yet, and don’t offer a big jump in performance over sky lake. As far as the dual core configs go, it’s probably solely a volume issue. There will most likely be a kaby lake bump in the spring. If you noticed Microsofts new machines are still using sky lake, and previous gen 980m graphics on that all in one. You won’t see large adoption of kaby lake chips until next year.

  7. No new iMac?

    Catastrophic failure.

    Meanwhile my 2009 iMac just keeps getting slower with each OS upgrade (but I cannot upgrade to Sierra), and apps like Garage Band are unusable, forget about FCP.

    I was hopeful that Apple would finally release a new iMac that was worth upgrading to, but they failed at that simple task again. The rumored specs of what should have been announced today had my credit card at the ready as it was finally something I wanted to spend $3k on.

    So, I will no longer support Apple until they release an iMac that I want to purchase; no iTunes song purchases/movie rentals, no app store purchases, and most critically, no new iPhone until Apple gets its act together and updates the desktop line.

    Thanks for nothing Apple.

  8. There are millions of MacBook Pro users out there, like myself, who see this as a logical and welcome upgrade, Apple will have little problem selling these, even though I said ouch when they announced the prices. I paid $1200 for my 13″ MBP a couple of years ago, now that comparable computer is several hundred dollars more. To have made this a compelling new Apple product release, they would have had to brought out the TouchBar model for $1500, max. The pricing will significantly slow its sales impact on Apple’s bottom line, only true professionals will shell out that kind of money for a new notebook.

    1. Apple have just taken themselves completely out of the education market. Not just for institutional purchases, but students buying their own laptops as well. Now it is clear why they didn’t launch these for back to school, as they wouldn’t have sold many at this price anyway.

      1. The price points are still within reach for students who value performance: the MacBook Air student price is under $1000, the MacBook $1250, and the base MacBook Pro $1450. Pretty much all premium notebooks are within the $1000-$1500 range these days (inc Windows), with business class notebooks going for $1500-$2500. So Apple is just following the trend.

        The big difference is that you can now get a low-end cheapo Windows or Google laptop for $300-$500, so there’s a huge price difference between cheapo stuff and the premium notebooks. Steve Jobs always said that Apple would never go there, they would not cater to the bottom-feeding commodity computer market, and Apple is following this practice.

        It does mean that the class divide will continue to grow with schools. As a parent the first thing I would ask is whether the school district supports Apple or not. I would never let my kid go to a Windows school…

          1. Don’t just look at hardware specs, I would take a MacBook Air any day over a comparably priced Windows machine, let alone a $300 Walmart special. It all depends on how important performance is for you as a complete package, and not just with some hardware components. You may have a Windows computer with more powerful components, but if the build quality and craftsmanship are crap, then you’ll only be frustrated, as I’ve seen time and again with friends who use Windows. With Sierra you get a lot more computer, in spite of the components.

  9. Better still get a Windows 10 with touch and you can do far more much more easily. Sorry Apple but a touchbar is simply laughable when you see what a Windows 10 device can do.

  10. What a disappointment. im comparing this with my 2010 MacBook and I don’t think the changes are enough for me to move on. Yes it’s much faster. But does it change the way I work everyday that much? I guess no. For the first time in more than a decade, I believe Microsoft has the hottest new product available with that surface they released yesterday.

    So long for the biggest and with most money in the bank company in the worlds …

    1. Are you kidding? Retina display, brand new OLED menu bar, 3d touch track pad, latest ports, and yes, WAY faster chip, RAM and video, lighter and with a longer lasting battery. If that ain’t a worthy upgrade, im not sure what will please you…

      1. This is a long post and my last here.

        I’ve been a Mac user since System 7.
        Letdown does not even begin to describe it.
        Cook’s keynotes were always uninspiring but this was by far the worst. The most disappointing 90 minutes I’ve ever experienced.

        Making something a bit thinner and lighter and crowing about it as if nobody but Apple could achieve such a remarkable feat has become so damn old it’s not even funny. “Groundbreaking” my *ss.
        Watch the keynote again and notice the total silence while Phil emoted over the volume decrease. A lot of those people in the audience watched the M$ surface demo a few days ago. This must have been pretty tedious by comparison.

        MagSafe, a brilliant piece of tech that makes it a snap to plug in your laptop: Gone.
        USB, which EVERY PERIPHERAL I OWN uses: Gone.
        ***YOU cannot even connect an iPhone to the new MacBook Pro without an adapter.***
        The SD card slot, which I use daily to download camera cards: Gone.
        F keys, which I use hundreds of times a day to do simple things like turn the volume up and down, pause and play music, and escape out of tools and functions in apps: Gone.
        (If you think this idiotic ‘Touch Bar’ is innovative then your expectations are far too low. The point of the physical keyboard is that you don’t need to look down. This touch strip adds nothing but another level of complexity to the user experience, 99% of what it purports to do was already available in each app’s UI.)

        My GF, waiting patiently for an Air update, is very frustrated. Now she has to either get the overpriced and near useless MacBook, with ONE port, or pay 2016 cash for 2012 tech with the outdate Air that she could have bought a year ago, or plonk down $1500 for a laptop with a freaking pathetic 256Gb SSD.

        I have come to the sad conclusion that M$ is leading the way, and that with a new CEO barely 2 years into the job.

        So. I’m done with Apple.

        I’m done wasting my life hoping they’ll surprise me, I’m done defending them in forums, I’m done watching their boring keynotes and I’m done wondering when/if they’ll go back to supporting me as a professional user.
        I’m also done giving Apple my money, only to watch it go to buying communists and rapper’s approval and Cook’s relentless SJW campaigning (brainwashing everyone into thinking homosexuality is normal when every fact of human biology says otherwise) or padding Apple’s insane and borderline immoral $237b bank balance.

        I’ll be buying either Windows machines or used Macs from now on and recommending my peers do the same.

        1. A Mac is clearly not for you, and that’s fine, have fun with Microsoft (though I do recommend looking at the Belichick video of him throwing down a Surface in pure frustration).

          For me Apple hit exactly my user category today, they hit a home run. All the things you tick off as deal breakers are non-issues for me. I haven’t used my MBP’s SD slot in years, and for me the USB-C multi-functionality is well worth giving up mag-safe.

          Everything else is fantastic and I can’t wait to get my hands on one…

    1. If the people on MDN (who are about as loyal a customer base that Apple can ever hope for) are complaining about this announcement it is telling you a lot. Please explain how this MBP has “changed laptops”.

      They made it thinner and added a touch bar, while using last generation processors and insufficient RAM for the “pros” this machine is supposedly targeting. Oh, they made it more expensive to boot.

      The only thing they changed is the Mac value proposition, and they didn’t change it for the better.

      1. BTW, I have never bought a non-Apple computer, going all the way back to an Apple IIe in 1985. I was waiting for this update to buy my daughter a new laptop, but I am going to seriously look at other options before deciding.

        1. I took one of those vaunted HP Spectres for a spin a few days ago. This is a ‘premium’ Windows laptop in the same price category as the MacBook Pro. All I can say is, have fun all you folks planning on switching to Windows, it will be a costly lesson for you. The build quality wasn’t near as good as a Mac, and, well, it’s a Windows computer, you’ll have a blast spinning around with its frustrations and bugs!

  11. Steve Jobs warned against Apple becoming too greedy. It was on full display today. MacBook Pro prices are outrageous. Forget about gimmicks like tool bars etc. The question is are new Macs doing something that Dell which is half price can’t do?

    1. Apple has now gone completely overboard valuing design over utility. Yes, the machine is beautiful. Yes, the engineering and manufacturing quality is the best in the world. Do those things help the user do their work better than a windows machine, enough to justify the premium price? Now I’m not so sure of the answer.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.