The Touchbar MacBook Pro is a Disposable Embarrassment

2 minute read
| Devil's Advocate

It’s a joke that the new MacBook Pro with a Touchbar is called a “Pro” machine. Perhaps Apple should call it the MacBook Exec or Edition. I won’t bother rehashing the many quibbles that others have already covered. Yet, once again, the punditry has failed to notice the biggest and most obvious flaw and are ranting about the wrong things. Let me rant about the right things for you. You’re welcome.

The Touchbar MacBook Pro is a failure because you cannot upgrade its storage capacity. Ever. Why? Because the SSD is a soldered-in and non-upgradable boat anchor.

Using Touch Bar on MacBook Pro

A woman using Touch Bar on MacBook Pro

While some may quibble with the 16GB RAM limit, at least there were technical limitations to that. Namely it was limited by the particular Intel chipset. Furthermore, nothing stops you from maxing out the RAM when you order the machine. Generally speaking, Apple lets you buy a Pro laptop with the maximum addressable RAM for its given chipset.

However, that argument does not hold water with storage. The Touchbar MacBook Pro is limited to a paltry 2TB SSD. I have an old 2011 17” MacBook Pro with a 2TB SSD, and I can easily put in a 4TB SSD today, and 15TB in the not so distant future.

Storage Size Matters for Pros

The reality is, professional users need and use lots of storage, and those storage needs change with time. A pro machine needs to be adaptable. By limiting and freezing the machine to 2TB, Apple ensures that professionals who need more storage space need to look elsewhere. Further, it totally makes the machine a ‘disposable’ device for those that buy it today. Once they run out of space, for example, a year later, the only option is to get rid of the machine, and hope there is a new machine with more storage available. That’s nuts!

There is no excuse for Apple making storage non-upgradable (other than greed or gross incompetence). They put an upgradeable SSD slot in the non-Touchbar, entry-level MacBook Pro. So whatever marginal idiot reason they trot out for not including it on Touchbar models is total BS. Talk to the hand; I don’t give a $#*%. The machine’s battery or thinness would not have been compromised in any serious way with the inclusion of the slot, again, as evinced by the entry level model.

This storage lock-in has no business on any machine with a “Pro” moniker. It just further shows how heinously out of touch Apple has become with its core professional and creative user base. Let’s pray that Apple has woken up, and the next revision of its MacBook Pro will avoid this critical mistake. Otherwise, Apple will continue to bleed its pro users to companies that are not tone deaf to their needs.

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fanboy
Member
fanboy

How can someone run out of 2TB of storage in a “single year” I have a 256 GB macbook 2016 and I haven’t run out of storage. I HAVE 226 GBS LEFT! I don’t think we should be using notebooks for our everyday “pro” users. If you want to be able to get to upgrade storage and RAM, GET A DESKTOP!.

Member
zustiizth

Gentlemen, i think this MBP 2016/2017 is made with bunch of flaws… 1. Many users are experiencing graphic failures 2. Many are also experiencing SSD failures Sadly a friend who lives in West Africa bought one and within two months, the SSD failed. Now being non-replaceable, only option is to send back to the store he bought it from in Carlifornia, USA. bummer. Apple behave like witch-crafts taking away the HDMI, USB A, or Ethernet Port. How do you call a PC without the above port? (Tablet) How can you call a PC without these ports a PRO? I’m never… Read more »

mickruom
Member
mickruom

I returned mine. I have two Retinas 15″ pre crap-bar. Not having a physical escape key and the loss of magsafe and the destruction of all ports in favor of the useless and too-few USB C was too much. Tim Cook is a crook and a loser compared to Steve Jobs.

joe297
Member
joe297

Agreed John! And a sincere Thank You Mr. Kheit for having the courage to point it out and defend your position! The unexpectedly large number of complaints about the new models seem like background noise by comparison. Why? Tho not ideal, you can workaround most with a few dongles or extra power supply. But the soldered-in SSD is the only one that truly limits the usefulness & useful life of the machine! Cloud Storage isn’t a cure-all: I’m an engineer & programmer. Most of my customer sites are government, pharmaceutical, military, & health care. These generally aren’t supportive of Cloud… Read more »

Macsee
Member
Macsee

Apple should release new Mac models every year, as done with iOS gadgets. Macs should have standard connectors allowing upgradable components, including SSD, RAM, CPU and GPU. And last but not least, Apple should not charge two to three times more for the very same component when compared to resellers like Amazon.

Lee Dronick
Member
Lee Dronick

The reality is that professionals are leaving the mac in significant numbers

Can you give us any links to studies on that?

Member
lemon4611

Apple has taken the closed system to a perverted level. Hard drives, ram and video cards should be expandable. By forcing one to only be able to upgrade at the time of purchase with only Apple making the upgrade is not just greedy it will prove fatal for Apple. Cook has damaged Apple’s integrity with some decisions that Jobs would have had nothing but contempt for. El Captain and Sierra show that Apple is ending it’s relationship with the customer base that has been loyal from day one. Cook’s team has degraded the hardware, can’t release any OS on any… Read more »

Lee Dronick
Member
Lee Dronick

I am genuinely interested in what kind of work you do that requires you to keep that much with you when you are disconnected. Mick that was the basis for my comment about identifying ourselves as what professional field. Someone writing literature is going to have different portable computing needs than someone working in video. Even then I would rather do extensive work at a desktop than at “portable location” even if I had a portable hooked to an external monitor and keyboard. I used to work in graphic arts, these days I mostly yell at the kids on my… Read more »

mick
Member
mick

Then scurry off to buy your big professional Windows laptops with lots of local storage then. You never answered why you need so much storage on a portable device. I’m all ears. What special projects are you working on that you need to store more than 1Tb LOCALLY? Do you not have a corporate SAN? Can you not afford a NAS box? Is your broadband slow and flakey? Do you do your remote work in a McDonalds? I am genuinely interested in what kind of work you do that requires you to keep that much with you when you are… Read more »

Member
Michael Siever

Aside from their apparel, Steve Jobs and Tim Cook couldn’t be less polar opposites of each other. From what I’ve heard about Steve Jobs, he was a major jerk towards his employees, but man, was he a visionary! Tim Cook I have heard is super nice to his employees, but boy howdy, does he stink as a businessman! The only reason that could possibly explain why he hasn’t been ousted yet by the shareholders is because he *is* the majority shareholder. Between the removal of the SD card port on the latest MBP iterations, the non-removable SSDs on the higher… Read more »

Lee Dronick
Member
Lee Dronick

It isn’t like Apple is struggling financially with the products that they are offering. if the “professionals” left how much would hurt Apple’s bottom line.

Member
Jayme Capurso

“Go buy a PC or keep your outdated gripes to yourself.” And that is exactly what many long term mac users have done or are considering doing and many of them are speaking out in the hope Apple will hear them somehow from with their arrogance vacuum! You and Apple can spin it however you like, modular offers more options than a closed design, more options will suit the needs of more people which means more sales. Apple has forgotten their own mantra ‘form follows function’ and now its ‘form over function’. Or rather ‘Profits over function’ which given Tim… Read more »

Lee Dronick
Member
Lee Dronick

Professionals come in a number of models and configurations. It would help if when referring to yourself if you would say writer, illustrator, video editor, journalist, photographer, or whatever.

mick
Member
mick

I can’t believe all of those dinosaurs on here, including the author, complaining about a lack of storage on their portable devices. Seriously? What kind of professional user works permanently disconnected? All of those creative content pros that sit in the park working on 15Tb project files – those ones? What a load of rubbish. Just because you joined the industry long before cloud storage, wireless networks, or even wired networks were around, doesn’t mean that vendors should support your old habits. Keeping all your files on a portable device is the most ridiculous concept in 2017 – not to… Read more »