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News Apple unveils new single-port MacBook

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Gareth Halfacree, 10 Mar 2015.

  1. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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  2. Icy EyeG

    Icy EyeG Controlled by Eyebrow Powers™

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    The netbook format is coming back, somehow.

    However, I can't help but notice this could be interpreted as a big tablet, without touch, and in a clamshell with keyboard.
     
  3. faugusztin

    faugusztin I *am* the guy with two left hands

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    The single port system at $1299 price tag would make sense - if they would bundle at least the basic set of adapters (ethernet, displayport, basic 2-3 port USB hub). But this is just a money grab for now.
     
  4. ChaosDefinesOrder

    ChaosDefinesOrder Vapourmodder

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    This also shows that the Lightning cable is no longer required. At all. If a laptop can be charged via Micro type C, and this port can also be used for data and graphics, then what is the point of Lightning other than being proprietary for proprietary's sake (although I wouldn't put THAT past Apple)
     
  5. stonedsurd

    stonedsurd Is a cackling Yuletide Belgian

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    That's exactly how I'm looking at it. It's like a bad Surface Pro 3. Very disappointing. Apple is taking this whole "materials and construction" thing a bit too far, at the expense of actual usability and it's getting ridiculous.

    I say this as a 15-inch MacBook Pro and iPhone 5S user who loves both devices - I am very dismayed by where Apple is going. When I was in the market for a new laptop around early 2011, the MacBook was really the only thing there for me. Powerful enough for the daily grind, graphics for a good bit of portable gaming (and then came Steam for Mac, which was awesome) and with battery life and build quality that was untouchable in the market. The iPhone 5S will probably go down as my favourite phone ever, even if I upgrade to something newer in the future, just for its perfect size and balance between power and endurance. I've had it nearly two years and it's suffered none of the slowdowns and battery degradation that all the Androids around me (Galaxy S3/S4, Nexuses galore) have.

    Now they've alienated small-phone users like myself completely (I don't know what's going to happen when the inevitable upgrade does need to happen - they're all huge now!) and the MacBooks have just gotten silly with all this Retina and non-upgradable nonsense.

    For reference, I bought my 15-inch MBP with 4GB RAM and a mech HDD (because college student and I spent a little extra on the matte 1680x1050 screen, which is not as easy to retrofit down the line). Today it's screaming along with a 120GB SSD and 16GB RAM. I'm ****ed if I want to try something like that with a new MBP, so basically, I'm just ****ed.

    The new Air would actually have been perfect for professionals in need of portable power (yay alliteration!) and as a journalist/researcher I was kinda of hopeful once the pre-release rumours started because it would have been the ideal machine for someone like me, IF it wasn't so neutered. The performance is adequate and the battery life is more than passable, and if it had the same peripheral connectors as the outgoing Air — Magsafe, Thunderbolt, SD Card and maybe 1 USB3 instead of two — it would be a done deal. Instead, it's a useless pancake with a pretty screen. No thanks.

    Personal computers (laptops and desktops) are for actual WORK. Leave this single-port stupidity to the tablets please.
     
  6. Anfield

    Anfield Well-Known Member

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    Take a desktop pc, open the side panel, marvel at the amounts of wasted space, rearrange the components to save as much space as you can, throw in a keyboard and attach the screen with a hinge, you just invented the Laptop.
    Take the closed Laptop, flip the screen so its visible, remove the keyboard, display hinge and attach a stand: you just invented the All in one PC.
    Remove the stand, swap the non touch screen for a touch screen, shrink the whole thing in size: you just invented the tablet and smartphone.

    Optional step, laugh at the people who claim any of the above to be true innovation instead of basic evolution.
     
  7. RedFlames

    RedFlames ...is not a Belgian football team

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    Can't help but think if Dell had done this with their equivalent [xps13 iirc] they'd find themselves being chased down the street by an pitchfork waving angry mob.
     
  8. Maki role

    Maki role Dale you're on a roll... Staff

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    I can't help but feel like they missed a trick with this one. The connector type is great, but by only having one they're forcing you to buy an adapter. So why is this a problem? Well aside from the annoyance of needing an adapter, it prevents uptake of the connector type simply because you always need an adapter anyway pretty much. Now if they had 2-3 of the same connectors, only that type btw, then I could see it making a difference. Then you'd still need an adapter at first, but you'd be inclined to buy bits and bobs that fit natively instead. That would help get the ball rolling, and combined with maybe tablets and normal PCs we'd get some traction going.

    Currently it just means it's a bit impractical and doesn't do much for the new standard.
     
  9. silk186

    silk186 Derp

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    When i saw this on facebook I thought it was a spoof article... nope, just apple being apple. No reason they couldn't put a 2-3 of these ports.
     
  10. silk186

    silk186 Derp

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    This is USB 3.1, not thunderbolt - you don't need an apple adapter, just a usb hub.
     
  11. edzieba

    edzieba Virtual Realist

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  12. RedFlames

    RedFlames ...is not a Belgian football team

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    No but it means everyone who bought TB->whatever adapters for their mac pro or whatnot now have to buy adapters for their adapters...

    But using the USB 3.1 Type-C port isn't the problem [imo], its the fact there's only 1... They also ditched magsafe which was [again imo] one the macbooks best features...
     
  13. Icy EyeG

    Icy EyeG Controlled by Eyebrow Powers™

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    Type-C's Alternate Mode is for DisplayPort, not Thunderbolt. Apple's adapters probably convert DisplayPort to HDMI or VGA (depending on the adapter), while providing an additional Type-C for plugging the power adapter and a Type-A USB port as well.
     
  14. Snips

    Snips I can do dat, giz a job

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    Yeah but all of your whining is mute, it's got a "NEW" single USB Type-C connector.
     
  15. Xlog

    Xlog Active Member

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    IMO, even the previous AIR was too fragile to be considered for professional use. I know people who are extra careful with their electronics and even they manage to crack AIR's screen (its basically an extra thin matrix with some aluminium foil glued on. This new one will probably crack if you look at it funny.
     
  16. wolfticket

    wolfticket Downwind from the bloodhounds

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    Yep. It suddenly becomes a lot less impressive once you compare it with current and upcoming x86 Core M tablets, especially at the price.
     
  17. RedFlames

    RedFlames ...is not a Belgian football team

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    If you're looking for a potential silver lining from all of this, it could potentially* lead to a universal laptop charger, similar to what microUSB did for [non-apple, funnily enough] phones...


    *assuming there aren't currently other devices doing the same thing...
     
    Last edited: 10 Mar 2015
  18. Cei

    Cei pew pew pew

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    I really don't get people sometimes.

    Apple are selling this as an ultraportable, not a desktop replacement. That means portability and size and the expense of other things, such as a stack of full size ports. Whilst I agree Apple should have provided the 3-way (power, HDMI and USB 3.0) adapter in the box, I have no beef with the single port. This isn't a laptop that you're supposed to have five external drives, an external screen and everything else hooked up to. For that there's the MacBook Pro.

    This also shows the direction that the industry is going to go with ports, namely USB-C. Thunderbolt is dying a death and this is the (arguably better) replacement. Yes, Apple will most likely put it on more machines in the future, but also more of them. USB-C can replace Lightning cables with ease.

    For people saying the new MacBook isn't for professionals on the go...you're absolutely correct. The machine you're after is the 13" MacBook Pro with retina display. I can also forsee the MacBook Air slowly being retired, with the line shrinking to the MacBook (ultraportable) and the Pro series.

    I'm going to buy one of these MacBooks. I have other Macs to use at home when I need raw CPU power/storage etc, and it will be a laptop that goes in to my work bag with the smallest profile and weight possible. It'll get used for web access (WiFi), writing up papers and research. For that I don't need more than a single USB port for memory sticks, and it'll backup wirelessly when I'm at home to a Time Capsule. Yes, it sort of is like a large glorified iPad (but with a full OS), but that's actually what I want from an ultraportable.

    tl;dr It isn't a "Pro" machine, Apple sell a MacBook Pro for exactly that reason
     
  19. stonedsurd

    stonedsurd Is a cackling Yuletide Belgian

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    Feels like a product searching for a market TBH.

    The Surface Pro 3 does everything it does and more and better.
     
  20. Cei

    Cei pew pew pew

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    Uh huh. Define better? By my reckoning the SP3 has a worse battery life, runs hot and the type covers fall apart within months. Oh and they run Windows, whilst I'm partial to OS X. The new MacBook is also smaller and lighter, which is nice to have. The MacBook also doesn't have that stupid kickstand that makes it impossible to use on your lap comfortably.

    The only thing that is an unknown is performance of the Broadwell Y components. However, for surfing the web, productivity tasks etc. it's more than likely the MacBook is plenty good enough. I certainly wouldn't buy one for games or anything like that - but that goes back to my point of buying the right tool for the job.

    As for the statement that it's searching for a market? Really? There's plenty of people out there who want a tiny laptop that actually has a decent amount of power under the hood and a high quality screen. Yes, there's also those who want a tiny laptop that is festooned with ports and crams in an i7 processor, but they'll need to wait a while until technology actually catches up with their dreams. USB-C is actually a step towards that, offering a very very low profile port that handles multiple duties.
     
    Last edited: 10 Mar 2015

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