3 things you didn't know about the MacBook Pro's new Touch Bar

Macbook Pro Touch ID
Macbook Pro Touch ID (Image credit: iMore)

With the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar beginning to ship to customers, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller sat down for an interview with Steven Levy from Backchannel to talk about the new laptops. The Touch Bar, Schiller says, comes after years of experimenting with Multi-touch on the Mac, and finding that a full-blown, iOS-like experience just wasn't in the cards.

From Backchannel:

"We think of the whole platform," he says. "If we were to do Multi-Touch on the screen of the notebook, that wouldn't be enough — then the desktop wouldn't work that way." And touch on the desktop, he says, would be a disaster. "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd." He also explains that such a move would mean totally redesigning the menu bar for fingers, in a way that would ruin the experience for those using pointer devices like the touch or mouse. "You can't optimize for both," he says. "It's the lowest common denominator thinking."

Levy was also able to ask Schiller about Apple's decision to include only USB-C ports on the new MacBook Pro, a decision that has frustrated many with a number of classic USB peripherals and accessories. Ultimately, Schiller believes, it's a non-issue.

Furthermore, with its speed and versatility (a big advantage is that you can use any of these ports for video, charging, and pretty much anything you'd ever do by connecting with a computer), USB-C is right for now. As far as dongles, he claims that most people won't need them. For the small number of people that do, ones are available. (Apple, obviously sensitive to the issue, recently cut dongle prices on its store.) "We're absolutely more sure than ever that we've done the right thing."

Still undecided about whether or not you should pick up a new MacBook Pro? Be sure to check out the iMore review.

Joseph Keller

Joseph Keller is the former Editor in Chief of iMore. An Apple user for almost 20 years, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.