Futures: Review of the new MacBook Pro


What pro computing could be:

Back in 2008:

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There are other laptops out there, the Dell XPS 13 for example with a 1TB SSD and 16GB ram is £1649, where as the equivalent MacBook pro is £2489. The Dell is the same weight, has a higher resolution screen, later generation CPU, more ports and even comes in rose gold. The 15inch model can go up to 32GB RAM with a 4K display.

I guess people don’t want to move away from OSX.

Given that most web apps run on Linux, perhaps there would be a move to Linux laptops. Dell for example will sell laptops with Ubuntu on, though their site still says “Dell recommends Windows” in a disconcerting kind of way. We could do with a major vendor creating a another brand, with which they only sell Linux computers and everything on the site assumes you are going to using Linux, including accessories that are tested to work on Linux and easy to get going with it.

I went from using Windows (which I’d used since Windows 3.1 right up until 8.1), to Ubuntu (which I used for about 6 months on a Dell XPS), to OSx (which I’ve used for almost 2 years).

I don’t have any particular loyalty to the operating system, I just wanted to remove barriers and make things easier for myself by using the same tools as my fellow developers.

The 6 month’s of Ubuntu was fine, for the most part, but I really didn’t get on with the touchpad or keyboard of the XPS, and it just lacked a certain polish that both Windows and OSx had. (I think I made a post about it somewhere, but I CBA to look for it).

Going forward, however, seeing as my employer will be supplying my computers from here on in, I’ll be using what the company uses, which currently is OSx. I’d not have a problem switching back to a Linux system (someone somewhere mentioned Elementraly), but I’d need to find alternatives to some of the mac only tools that I use.

Now the dust has settled, my takeaways are that folk basically wanted the same thing, and a few wanted a 32Gb option.

My “late 2013” MBP works and looks like it did when I got it. I’ve no need nor inclination to change it atm. Given the new MBP options, I’ll probably go for a battery swap when it dies.

I have a spare laptop that I keep updated with Ubuntu. I preefer the consistency of MacOS and the fact stuff just works. That battery life, when I need it, is much better too. The sync with iPad and iCloud obviates a few admin tasks.

I’ve been wondering whether it was an accident that Apple hit on the MBP design that devs love(d). Devs don’t seem to be the (or a) target market now. If so, Apple’s left a nice market for someone to step into, although no-one else seems very interested.

I use MacBook Air 2012 at home, it still works fine though I keep running out of space on the 256GB SSD (due to my photography, regularly archive it off to NAS, but still a problem) and screen isn’t the best for photos and it doesn’t support a external 4K display. I use RedHat desktop at work and I’ve got a 15inch MacBook Pro Retina 2012 at work (but I don’t use it much), which I think it too heavy.

Personally, I like that the new MacBook Pros are lighter (particularly the 13inch), I could probably live with the USB-C ports, though the lack of a SD card slot is bit annoying for me. Mostly the price is too high to justify upgrading. I ran Ubuntu on my Dell laptop for 5 years before I got the MacBook Air and on my desktop has run Linux for a long time, though I don’t use it anymore.

When I bought the MacBook Air, it was the same price as anyother Ultraportable notebook and I thought I might do some iOS dev (I didn’t).

I got the 512Gb SSD and use 1/4 of it :hushed: My NAS is via an Airport, and fires up in a second via Finder, so keeping large, less frequently used files there is no problem. More Apple-land integration.

4K support I have, though don’t use, but I do use the HDMI (RIP). I’m not a photo dude, but I do use the SD card from time to time, and I’ve no idea how I’d move pics from camera to MBP without it. The weight doesn’t bother me. It’s much lighter than anything I’ve had before.

The new prices are crazy, but it’s deductible ¯\(ツ)

Apple being criticised for moving to the open USB-C standard because it isn’t as shiny. They can’t win, can they?

They stole that function keys label strip idea from the early IBM PCs too - the ‘Industry Standard’.

The only thing that was non-standard previously was the magsafe power connector. I think it’s good they are moving to USB-C in the long run. However, I don’t think it’s that unreasonable to expect some overlap in standards, after 20 years of the USB-A port.

It’s supported via a cable, isn’t it? I remember similar criticisms when they were first to support SCSI but where would we be without SCSI now? OK, bad example.

Yes. The key word here is major, of course: System76 (US) and Entroware (UK) among others are all about this, but they’re small…

I’m aware of System76, I put in word “major” to discount them :wink: - It seems small companies can’t take this on. I wonder what the future for Dell, Toshiba, Lenovo, Acer etc. is, if Microsoft pushes harder with it’s own surface devices. Apparently Chromebooks outsell Mac laptops and a Ubuntu laptop would be more capable than a Chromebook, so it seems there is a gap there.

The gaping hole is a Linuxbook, that’s as easy as a Chromebook but can have Real Apps added when people get frustrated by the limitations. I hoped the Firefox phone was taking us there. I fear for Linux if any 1 distro wins though, particularly Ubuntu. Imagine if Ubuntu’s web apps vision had been shared across all Linux vendors instead of being used as a market differentiator, for selfish #win.

The Linux market had a lot of growing into other OS territory to do before there needed to be any in-fighting between distros. You’d think they’d have learned a lesson from the Unix Wars. ‘1 more standard to rule them all’ never works.

HP have always seemed the obvious choice to go first. Have they remortgaged their souls from Microsoft to Google? If you go on the HP site and find a laptop, Linux isn’t an OS choice. If you search for Linux it shows you a few laptops.

An interesting conversation about Dell Project Sputnik, which I thought must have crashed into Mars
A member of the team says we should make more noise.

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