Nov 27

I’m typing this post on a $3500 2016 MacBook Pro 15 Touch Bar. It was supposed to be my replacement for my Mid 2010 15 MacBook Pro. It’s super fast, light, slim and well built.

But this sleek, overpriced gadget is on it’s way back to Apple.

It’s just not going to work. The touch bar isn’t much more than a gimmick.  Maybe someday it’ll be super useful, but without Force Touch and Taptic feedback, it’s just too hard no not cause accidental input.  If ‘virtual’ buttons like the F keys and the esc key only reacted to presses instead of the slightest touch, then it might be okay. As it stands it’s a distraction.

If your sitting at an odd angle the touch bar my be hard to see and there’s just no way to know what’s on it or where in the heck to touch without looking at it. The Touch Bar also just doesn’t fit into my work. I use Microsoft Remote Desktop a lot in my daily life.  Go figure there’s a lot that you do with F keys on windows. I’m already used to hitting fn + the F key, but it’s just way to easy to touch the wrong key when using the touch bar (see: The Touch Bar needs Force Touch and Taptic feedback).

I actually really like the four Tunderbolt 3 ports. TB3 really is the most versatile port today. But where it falls down for a long time Mac user is the power brick.  I’ve got five MagSafe chargers! It’d cost me almost $500 to replace those. That and I’ve got a little 11-month old girl now. I can’t imagine having to worry about the charging cable yanking my computer out of my lap.

Touch ID is as handy as you expect and it’s something that I’ll really miss. I understand Secure Enclave makes it technically difficult for Apple to offer Touch ID as a peripheral. Honestly, it really comes down to Apple wanting your money.

Speaking of wanting my money, I’m currently still committed to have macOS as my primary desktop platform so instead of $3500 for a 2016 MBP, I picked up an Apple refurbished full-spec 2015 15″ MBP for $2300. It’s probably 5% to 15% slower depending on the task, but more than $1000 cheaper. It also uses my current all power adapters for a $50 investment in adapters.

There’s really just no justification or real added value to the 2016 touch. I’ve never been more excited to return a product.

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