Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, talking to The Independent:
Schiller is a huge camera enthusiast, particularly for Leica, so he's well-versed in the limitations and pains involved in image and video transfer. That said, I think the frustration isn't so much that Apple removed the SD card slot — or any of the old ports — but when they chose to remove it.
Nobody thinks we'll be using SDHC or USB-A in a decade, but between now and then there'll be a lot of turbulence and anyone not on the bleeding edge of it will get battered around a fair bit before it passes.
I've been using the non-Touch Bar version of the MacBook Pro 2016 for almost a week. My DSLR uses SDHC cards and, on my last MacBook Pro, I could just pull the card from the camera, plug it into the Mac, and grab my photos or videos. On this one, I'd need an adapter. But here's the thing: I haven't shot with that camera since I got my iPhone 7 Plus. With that, I just shoot and AirDrop. My use case isn't everybody's, of course, but is it an increasing number of people's?
We've been through these transitions before, with FireWire, MagSafe 1, DVI, VGA, and more. I've bought and used dongles every time. No dongle I've ever used proved necessary beyond about a year, though, even when the MacBook lasted me three or four.
That last part is illuminating.
Sure, there are technological constraints around what Apple could and couldn't do with these chipsets, but there's also a broader marketing question.
Traditional pros were the tip of an iceberg and now that iceberg has largely surfaced, thanks in no small part to computers being made more accessible and approachable than ever, and to technology becoming more mobile.
The kind of people who self-identify as "pro" is broader and more diverse than it was in generations past. Just like making apps went mainstream with iOS, so has photography and videography with cameras like iPhone and services like YouTube. What are the needs of modern pros and how are they balanced against the traditional pro segment that really does want or need a supercomputer in their backpack?
If these really turn out to be record-breaking MacBooks Pros, we'll have our answer.
There are also some fascinating replies to keeping the 3.5mm headphone jack, to the requirements for "Hey, Siri!" on the Mac, and more, so give it a read and let me know what you think!
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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.