The future of computers (part 4)
MacBook Pro technology and marketing
Thin, light and with a Touch Bar that substitutes the function keys. That is what you hear about the MacBook Pro 2016. It is the Apple laptop for professionals. Thin, light, Touch Bar are marketing distractions. I think Apple focuses the attention in the wrong place. For a professional, none of those things can solve any of their main problems. The other technical features have a second place in the communications. That gives the image that the MacBook Pro is not Pro.
I love the MacBook Pro. I appreciate that it is thin and light. The Touch Bar is promising. But that is not the point. It is a computer for professionals. With the evolution of phones and tablets, that is truer than ever. It seems that Apple communicates to the broad public and the professional feels excluded.
The problem is not the technology. The problem is marketing and communications.
Thin, Light, Touch Bar shines too bright.
Tablets and computers future
Phones and tablets are evolving faster than computers. They are substituting them in many fields. Every year they become cheaper, smaller and can do more things.
Computers are becoming specialized products. In some tasks and some professions, they are much better than phones and tablets.
Phones and tablets are the most common tools. Computers are becoming the specialized high-end machine for professionals.
The future of computers is Pro. The computers will be for professionals
At the end of 2016, Apple introduces the MacBook Pro. Many people agreed that it is a great computer. What is more surprising is that it receives many critics from the expert users. They claim that it is an underpowered machine.
Apple already has the iPad for the most common tasks. That is a platform that is improving fast. Laptops and desktops should specialize too. It seems that targeting the high-end users should be their priority.
The technology now
Some claim that it does not have enough RAM. The top model has 16 GB. We need RAM to go fast in complex tasks like images, audio, and especially video.
The people that tested the MacBooks say that they can do a lot with that 16 GB of RAM. Apple has optimized the machine to go fast in those circumstances.
Another claim is that it only has USB-C ports. You will need adapters to connect many devices.
The technology in the future
It seems that this is the computer of the future. What now seems a limitation could be an advantage in a few months.
It is quite probable that a second version of the MacBook Pro could have more RAM. The technology was not ready to allow it. But that should not be a limitation to renew the rest of the computer.
The new peripherals will come with USB-C. Dongles will only be for the transition period.
It is a powerful computer, and it will be better. It has some limitations now, but it is a machine that is thinking in the future.
Marketing and Communications
If we analyze in a cold way, the technology of this computers is suitable for the most demanding tasks. I think the biggest problem is marketing and communication.
Apple emphasizes "thin and light." That is not a priority for the professionals.
They launch the "Touch Bar" and make it the new star. It is something new and makes everybody talk about it. But, it does not solve any big problem of the pro users. It could be useful, but it is not a key feature. The "Touch Bar” isa marketing distraction. Perhaps was not the right moment to launch it.
Apple makes a computer with high technology for professionals. They only explain it to the non-professionals.
The MacBook improved
The MacBook 2015 (MacBook without the Pro) received many praises. It was clear that it was the first of a new kind. Many said that with a few improvements, it could be the perfect computer. They talked about a faster processor, adjust a bit the keyboard and only one more USB-C port. Well, a few months later, here we have the new MacBook Pro with all that improvements. Very few talked about that. We were all distracted with the Touch Bar.
The professionals give advice to the rest. Their power in a technology product could be stronger than advertising. They use the computer all day. They love the brand. Many of them were with Apple in the dark days, when they were a minority. I feel part of that community too.
Phones and tablets are for everybody. Computers are becoming specialized products for professionals. This trend will increase in the next years. Tablets will substitute the less powerful computers first. We will need professional high-end computers for a long time.
The MacBook Pro 2016 has the technology that most professionals need. It will be even better in the next months and years. Apple marketing and communication paid attention to the broad public. They emphasized "thin, light and Touch Bar." Those are not the priorities for the professional.
This is part of a series dedicated to the future of computers. For more detailed information see the other posts:
The future of computers. The near future
The future of computers. Mid and long term
The future of computers. The infografic
The future of computers. MacBook Pro
All the posts