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The MacBook Pro Doesn't Need Thin And Light

As more and more reactions to the new MacBook Pro get posted it's becoming clear that people who use the machine professionally aren't happy. For a machine which is supposed to be Apple's professional level portable that isn't a good sign.

Yes, there are the rabid Apple fans (in some cases blatant Apple shills) who will tell you that the new MBP is the perfect machine and of course Apple can do no wrong in their eyes.

However, more and more professional users, with a strong pro-Apple track record, are voicing their disappointment with the new machine.

Many see the Touch Bar has a retrograde step, others are questioning the removal of legacy ports (in particular photographers), everyone is concerned about dongles.

Interestingly there's one complaint that I'm seeing more frequently: the restriction on maximum memory size. At 16GB it's ample for everyday users, but for professionals it's a serious restriction. That the limit is entirely related to Apple's decision to go for the thinnest, lightest MBP it could build is doubly galling for these users. Yes, the restriction is all about availability of larger memory in the low power configuration that Apple has built the machine to use.

Apple already had a solid range of thin and light portables, with the MacBook and MacBook Air. For users wanting the ultimate in portability, or a great compromise between portable and powerful these machines delivered.

The MBP isn't a machine for use in the coffee shop or really for traditional portable duties. It's more of a machine that used as a surrogate desktop, moving from location to location for heavy duty usage. Yes there will be users who buy it because it's the top of the range Apple portable and then complain about the weight, but for Apple's core professional audience portable only means portable enough to carry from location to location. The MBP just wasn't crying out for diet tips from Apple's engineering team.

So, either Apple has completely misread its core audience for the MBP or it has information which suggests that those people currently complaining aren't actually the bulk of buyers.

Personally I've railed against Apple obsession with making things thinner and lighter without proper consideration to the costs of doing so. What's different is Apple's most loyal users are starting to echo that sentiment too.

 

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