Seven years is a long time in tech, but my MacBook Pro will soon be 7 years old. It’s not too bad, thanks to some RAM upgrades and a solid state drive, but it’s certainly nowhere near the performance of even Apple’s low-end MacBook Pros. I had been considering getting a new one in 2017, maybe in 2018, if I can’t budget it this coming year. However, while the new MacBook Pro has a surprisingly delightful keyboard and the Touch Bar is a fun toy, the new MacBook Pro just isn’t for me. It can’t be upgraded or serviced and I don’t have a single USB-C item. Instead, I have items that use USB-A, Firewire 800, SD cards, Ethernet ports, Display Ports, and surely more. If I got a portable computer, I’d want it to be actually portable, not require a few dongles just to hook up to my iPhone on the train, my camera in the park, or my monitor at work. I don’t want to need a dongle or two just to connect a mouse and keyboard, for crying out loud. So, I began thinking about my needs. The iPad supports RAW photos now, so I can use that in the field for photography. I can manage emails, Jenkins servers, review GitHub, and even SSH from my iPad, so I can do some work. Perhaps what I need is a desktop.
But looking at desktop Mac computers is also a disappointing journey.
Right now, the “best” Mac would likely be the 5k iMac. That computer, however, is already over a year old. The usual Mac powerhouse, the Mac Pro, is over 1,000 days old. The inexpensive Mac Mini? Almost 800 days old. These are devices that should be updated yearly, if not twice a year, but here they are, gathering dust on Apple’s shelves.
As a Mac fan, I was beginning to lose hope. Would Apple never again make a computer that’s for me? Maybe you’ve been worried about the same thing. Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, may be able to put those fears to rest.