Three MacBook mistakes: Will Apple correct course?

“Apple’s not a company that backtracks easily. It’s got a lot of pride and a reputation for moving forward,” Jason Snell writes for Macworld. “And yet every so often the company makes a decision that it thinks is right and is ultimately proven to be completely wrong.”

MacDailyNews Take: Cough – notch – cough!

“I’m starting to imagine what Apple might do if it decides that some of the decisions it’s made the past few years regarding Mac laptops might have been… misguided,” Snell writes.

1. One USB-C port on the MacBook
2. The low-travel butterfly keyboard
3. The Touch Bar and Touch ID

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: No.1 is not a mistake. MacBook is a road machine. As with two generations of MacBook Airs before them, we don’t use our MacBook ports for anything but charging as it is. If you want more ports on a portable, Apple offers other options.

No.2 is ripe for improvement and we fully expect that Apple is continuing to work on their physical keyboard designs.

No.3 is up in the air. Touch ID is going the way of the dodo with Face ID (soon) to arrive. The Touch Bar is fine as it is. It doesn’t need a “killer app.” We use the function row far more often with the Touch Bar than with physical keys.

28 Comments

    1. I would love to hear how people would react if an interactive touch bar that can at least potentially do whatever you want in that space on top of whatever buttons can do was proposed to be replaced by a series of mostly dumb keys with set icons on them that are limited in flexibility and are by the overwhelming majority of users barely used. The outcry would be like a scene from Les Misérables.

  1. Touchbar should continue. It may not be fully realized, but it has merit.

    Keyboards need to be rolled back a few years. Very few had anything but praise for MacBooks back then. Thinness does not trump function of the primary input device on a laptop.

    MacBook Adorable is fine with the one port; it IS designed for maximum portability via size and weight limits. A 2nd port would likely end all criticism of this model. MB Pro need more than they currently have +++ the return of Magsafe.

    1. It’s for that very reason that I’m replacing my Air with a MBPro from a couple of years back. Haven’t picked out exactly which one yet but it will be one with a replaceable drive and a better keyboard than they have now.

      1. That would be the mid-2012 MBP which is what I’m using now. It’s my 2nd that I got from eBay. You can change the battery, RAM and hard disk.

        It’s sad that I’m still using a 5-year old MBP design when I needed a new one. But none of Apple’s current offerings appeal to me 🙁

      1. SJ did a pretty good and above all exceedingly successful job of letting the customer know what they wanted. Whats more once they realised it they were demanding it from the opposition which is why competitors inevitably followed within a few years. Companies usually go bust for giving the customer what they think they want and sticking therefore to the status pro rather than what they will want when they see it in action. So your argument is totally flawed in conflicts with the evidence from about 1998 when Apple took this policy.

  2. Though I would agree that there’s nothing wrong with any of those features per se, it’s equally true that if they reversed course tomorrow I doubt anyone would complain, their utility is far from essential. And yeah – the soldering was and is big slap in the face, as was ditching ports (sorry, MDN, but realistically, most users need more than one, not everyone can afford the latest MBP) and eliminating Magsafe, that was a truly useful feature, it was crazy to drop it.

  3. The laptops started getting worse once they sealed them shut where we cannot replace batteries, replace the HD or add memory.

    The Gizmo Bar is not that special and the new Keyboards are awful.
    Taking away Mag Safe is stupid.
    One USB C port is a joke.

  4. 99% of the time, my laptop is closed and connected to the magic keyboard with numberic pad, Magic Mouse 2, and two 27” 5K ultrafine LG displays. So none of these are a problem for me. I have 8 extra USB-C ports in total, I never even see the Touchbar, but the new MacBook keyboard is actually my preference over the longer travel I get on the wireless keyboard. I was kind of hoping the new wireless keyboards were built the same way. It would actually be really nice if there were a keyboard that matched the MacBook perfectly including a touchbar along the top.

  5. The USB-C port on my MacBook is becoming unreliable – I guess wear, over time, makes the connection loose.

    And I have always hated the keyboard.

    But this has always been The American Way – style over function. American cars always looked great but were space inefficient, didn’t stop well and didn’t like corners or poor roads.

    There are many things to like about the Nacbook. But, in truth, it’s faults become harder to live with over time.

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