LET’S TALK TECH: Apple unveils newest tech offering: laptops made for connectivity



Apple marked its final product launch of the year last week with the unveiling of its new Macbook Pro. Since then, the most talked about piece of tech has been Apple’s newest device.

The most popular feature of the updated Macbook among potential buyers is the touch bar. It consists of a multi-touch glass strip where the row of function keys used to be. These keys are completely customizable and interchangeable depending on which functions are most important to the user.

The touch bar is also able to change its display depending on what app is being used at the moment.

For example, when using iMessage, the touch bar can display emojis or, when editing videos, users can easily and quickly scroll through their video timeline.

Although Apple has already updated its apps to work with the touch bar, the feature’s full potential is yet to be uncovered. It depends on how third parties incorporate the touch bar into their apps.

On the right side of the touch bar lies the only physical button in the row, the power button. However, that button also offers another feature: touch ID. Touch ID allows users to log into their Macs, as well as pay for items online, by using fingerprint recognition. Though this technology is not new to iPhones and iPads, this is the first time it’s being implemented on Apple computers.

These Macbook Pros are the lightest and thinnest ones to date. The 13-inch version measures in at 14.9mm thick and weighs three pounds, while the 15-inch version is 15.5mm and weighs only one more pound. In spite of their small size, the new Pros’ graphics have been upgraded to be 130 percent faster than their predecessors, with a 67 percent brighter display.

What Apple did make bigger is the trackpad, which is now double the size of the previous versions, and gives users more room for gestures and clicking.

But many, myself included, are concerned about the potential problem of having to rest your wrists on the trackpad, causing the trackpad to move the pointer around the screen. Apple has claimed that the trackpad was designed so this wouldn’t be a problem.

Another interesting upgrade is the laptop’s speakers. They are still located on either side of the keyboard but are now thinner and 58 percent louder. For music lovers like myself, this upgrade is just what Apple needed to take their computers to the next level.

I apologize to all the USB port lovers in advance, but Apple opted to drop all of their ports in exchange for Thunderbolt 3 backed USB-C ports. This means that users now have to buy $19 adapters if they want to connect certain devices, including cellphones, to their computers.

This is probably the make-or-break factor for many potential buyers. I’ll admit that I’m not a fan of Apple forcing their customers to buy adapters for this new port. I have a hard enough time transferring files from my Android phone to my Macbook Air, so I don’t need any more obstacles.

Although the USB-C ports might make connecting devices to the computer more of a hassle than it has to be, I have to admit that the benefits that come with the new Macbook Pro definitely outweigh the drawbacks.

The touch bar as well as touch ID seem very promising when it comes to making the user experience easier and quicker. The speaker’s extra volume can serve as an alternative to portable speakers, and the upgrades made to the laptop’s image display can aid video content creators.

This upgrade will keep Apple fans excited to get their hands on the new Macbook Pro and pique the interest of students who were looking for an innovative laptop.

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