After what feels like ages, Apple officially unveiled the 2021 MacBook Pro lineup. True to leaks and rumors, the latest MacBook Pro lives up to the hype with a new Promotion mini LED display, multiple ports, MagSafe fast charging, and physical function keys. On the flip side, Apple made some decisions that may push away potential buyers. Here are the top five reasons not to buy the new MacBook Pro.
1. It’s Big, Heavy, and Thick
Gone are the days when Apple tried to woo users with thin and light laptops. The exclusion of butterfly keys and the addition of HDMI and MagSafe means the new MacBook Pro is thicker than the previous generation.
Apple doesn’t want to skimp on the battery life as well. As a result, you are looking at 1.6 kg (3.5 pounds) for a 14-inch MacBook Pro and 2.1 kg (4.7 pounds) for a 16-inch MacBook Pro. The height and width have also increased compared to the outgoing model.
The overall design also feels bigger as Apple is going back to the squarish shape of the chassis.
Those going from the 13-inch MacBook Pro to the 14-inch one should consider checking out the model in-store first. If you plan to use this on your lap while on your bed, it might be uncomfortable.
2. Notch Without Face ID
Similar to iPhone, Apple has debuted a notch on the new MacBook Pro lineup. But unlike iPhones, there’s no Face ID on the new MacBook Pros. Those who have used a Windows laptop with Windows Hello will swear by just how useful facial authentication is on a laptop compared to smartphones.
As soon as you open the laptop, you are already sitting in an ideal position for the laptop to scan your face. Apple does offer authentication via Apple Watch to log in without any fuss. But then again, it requires a user to invest in the whole Apple ecosystem to work flawlessly.
The inclusion of notch also makes the Mac menu bar taller, which may look odd to some.
3. Incompatible Apps
It’s been a year since Apple released M1 CPU for the Mac. While many popular apps have already adopted the M1 support, some big names are still missing from the list. Apple’s Rosetta 2 simulation works wonders to run Intel-based apps on the M1 Max or M1 Pro Macs.
However, running apps through Rosetta simulation may affect the battery life on your MacBook Pro. While running non-M1 apps, you’ll face occasional hiccups and won’t get the magical battery life that Apple claims on their website. Some notable names include Evernote, Slack, Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, Spotify (still in beta for M1), and more.
4. High Price
ProMotion 120Hz mini LED display, class-leading CPUs, and a completely redesigned chassis mean the new MacBook Pro doesn’t come cheap. The 14-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1999 and the highest-end 16-inch MacBook tops at $6000+.
Even in upgrades, you will see Apple’s high asking price. For example, an upgrade from 512GB SSD to 2TB SSD will cost $600 more; from 16GB RAM to 32GB RAM, you are looking to spend $400 more.
In the CPU department, if you want to upgrade from an M1 Pro 8-core CPU to a 10-core CPU, be prepared to spend an extra $200. Similarly, an upgrade from M1 Pro to M1 Max on 14-inch MacBook Pro will add $500 more to the cart. That takes us to the 5th point.
5. No Touchscreen
This can be controversial, but those coming from high-end Windows laptops will surely miss the convenience of the touchscreen. In a bid to push the iPad Pro at the go-to computing machines, Apple has long refused to put a touch screen on MacBooks.
You may argue that macOS isn’t designed as a touch interface. But then again, Microsoft has done an excellent job balancing touch and non-touch UI elements in Windows 11, so why can’t Apple?
You may not use a touchscreen all the time, but that’s not the point. In some cases, you’ll feel an urge to reach out to the screen and interact with touch inputs. With a starting price tag of $1,999, Apple could have included touchscreen support.
Do You Really Need the New MacBook Pro?
Looking at the 2021 MacBook Pro’s positioning, they are aimed at professionals with heavy workflow. If your routine includes writing, web browsing, and occasional image editing, the M1 MacBook Air or M1 MacBook Pro will be just fine for you. They still offer excellent battery life and good enough power to get you through tasks.
The introduction of M1 Pro and M1 Max won’t make the previous M1 any slower. It can be the perfect balance between the power and battery for the majority.
If you don’t want to go with a dated design of M1 MacBooks, you can wait for the upcoming M2 MacBook. It is rumored to come with a next-generation M2 CPU, mini-LED display, smaller bezels, MagSafe charging, and understandably a much lower price.
Are you going to buy the new MacBook Pro or put a pause for some time? Share your reasoning in the comments section below.