Apple Unveils New Slimmer and Lighter Macbook Pro with Touch Bar and Touch ID
Apple today unveiled its much anticipated refreshed MacBook Pro lineup at its ‘Hello Again’ media event. The refreshed MacBook Pro models from the company might look similar at first glance, but they have been updated in almost every department.
Despite the exterior design remaining the same, the new MacBook Pro laptops are now lighter and slimmer than their predecessor. The use of metal edges and new finish do help differentiate the new MacBook Pro models from their predecessor. To further slim them down, Apple has used new metal inject mold-made hinges that are more reliable and sturdy than the hinge mechanism used in existing MacBook Pro models.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro is 14.9mm thin, 17% thinner from the existing 13-inch MacBook Pro. It is also 23 percent smaller in volume and half-a-pound lighter than the existing model at 3 pounds (1.36kg).
As for the 15-inch MacBook Pro, it is now 15.5m thin, down from 18mm thickness of the existing model. It weighs 4 pounds making it 0.5 pounds lighter than existing model.
The new 15-inch MacBook Pro comes with Force Touch trackpad that is now twice as big as the one found on the existing model. The new MacBook Pro models also feature the second generation scissor mechanism keyboards that Apple had first debuted on the 2015 MacBook.
The display on the new 15-inch MacBook Pro is 67% brighter and features higher contrast ratio. It also displays 25% wider colors while being more power efficient.
All 15-inch MacBook Pro models come with Intel’s Core i7 processor, DDR4 RAM running at 2133MHz, and AMD’s Radeon Pro GPU that is based on 14nm fabrication process. The SSD is now also up to 50 percent faster and can reach speeds of up to 3.1GB/s. The new thermal architecture ensures that the 15-inch MacBook Pro remains cool even when under heavy load. The speakers have also received an upgrade and now produce 2x more dynamic range.
As for the 13-inch MacBook Pro, it comes with dual-core Core i5 or i7 processor. It comes with Intel’s Iris GPU that is up to 2x faster thanks to the presence of 64GB eDRAM. It also features the new super fast SSD.
Despite coming with powerful internals, both new MacBook Pro models offer up to 10 hours of battery life.
There are no USB Type-A ports on the new MacBook Pro models, with the laptops only coming with four USB Type-C ports that are used for connectivity and charging. This means that the four USB Type-C ports can be used for charging, connecting USB devices, HDMI out, VGA out, andDisplayPort. They also support Thunderbolt 3.0.
The highlight of the new MacBook Pro models is the Touch Bar. Replacing the function keys, the Touch Bar is an OLED touch panel that will show application specific controls, dial controls, provide QuickType suggestions similar to iOS, and more. It can be used to quickly scrub through videos, view open Safari tabs, control music playback, and more. Apple also showed TouchBar support in third party apps like Photoshop at the event.
In addition, the new laptops also feature Touch ID that is integrated into the power button which now features a sapphire crystal lens. The second generation sensor is powered by Apple’s new T1 chip with its own secure enclave. It sits right beside the new Siri key; Yes, Siri gets its own dedicated key on the new MacBook Pro models. The Touch ID sensor can be used to authenticate Apple Pay transactions and more. Most importantly, the Touch ID sensor can automatically recognize the fingerprint scanned and switch to the relevant user profile.
The new 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro models will be available in Silver and Space Gray colors. They start shipping in 2-3 weeks, with prices for the 13-inch variant starting from $1799 and 15-inch variant starting from $2399.