MacBook Pro 2016 shows Apple is increasingly in a no-win situation when it comes to narrow product focus intersecting the widest possible audiences. If they spec bump and spec bump alone, they're no longer innovating. If they make larger changes, they're abandoning the traditional pro market.
Somewhere between a solid block of aluminum and Homer Simpson's MacBook Pro, though, Apple has made something incredibly interesting.
Adam Geitgey, writing on Medium:
I think history — and customers — will look back more favorably on the MacBook Pro than tech Twitter would have many believe. Yes, dongles are a drag, but we've been dealing with them forever. At least with four USB-C / Thunderbolt 3, I can plug in to any of them to charge, and I can plug any dongle into any of them, meaning I can make any port be anything I want.
Just how far in will Apple go with USB-C, though? Neither the Magic accessories nor the Siri Remote charge via USB-C, but by Lightning.
On iPhone and iPad, Apple wasn't patient enough to wait for USB-C. Instead, they drove forward with the similar-though-proprietary Lightning connector and got out a few years ahead.
It's slimmer and Apple doesn't have to wait on standards bodies to debate changes. But it doesn't benefit from the momentum that's turning USB-C's way.
Many people were outraged by the switch from 30-pin to Lightning after just a decade. How many would be outraged by the switch from Lightning to USB-C after only 5 years?
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Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.