Touchbar here to stay?

I didn’t want to hijack the thread about Touchbar support, but I do want to discuss what people think about it.

I think it’s probably one of the most contraversal features that apple had added in a long time.

Personally I feel it’s kinda counter intuitive, and to me it seems like a stop gap until the Mac goes full touch. I know Apple have said they’d never do it, but they also said they’d never make phablets.

The other day I watched two YouTube comparative reviews from video professionals, both have come from the Mac and trying out a Surface Laptop (for several months first). In both videos, they say the Touchbar is great, but for really working; a Touchscreen is much better.

They also both really liked the ability to use the same machine as a tablet, with full blown apps.

So what do you think? Is the Touchbar just a transitional step until Touchscreen is here, or is it here to stay?

The Touchbar is just there until they can convince us all to convert to iPad Pros and leave the real computers behind.

BTW - I love my Surface Pro…

Everything is a transition.</zen mode>

Try holding your arm for 15 minutes to your screen and then ask yourself if a touchscreen for a computer makes sense. When you use a touchscreen only you risk pain in head, shoulder and neck. Perhaps not now but in a couple of years. Even working on a laptop only without external screen and keyboard isn’t good for the head.

So the 20somethings - with the perfect eyesight that can read light grey on lighter grey - are welcome to use the touchscreen only.

Which is why both the MS Surface Book and Surface Studio have adjustable screens that can be made (almost) flat against the table. The Surface Book can have the screen removed and operated like a iPad, but with full blown desktop quality applications. So when you use Photoshop on a MSSB, it’s REALLY Photoshop, not a crippled version like you get for the iPad Pro…\

If only there was a way to install the macOS on a MSSB (where everything worked and was supported), I would buy one now (with the large stacks of cash that is reserved for a MacBook “Pro”).

I’m a 40 something with great eyesight (apart from being 10:30 or something like that)…

  1. I do not own nor tried a MacBook Pro with TouchBar.

  2. As I already said multiple times, O have a 2in1 Windows 8.1 (updated to Windows 10).
    Every Wednesday (or so), I take both laptops with me at my local McDonald’s to update the Windows 10 one.
    Every here and then, I take both laptops with me at my local McDonald’s to update the MacBook Pro.

So, every week and sometimes two times a week, I have (at my local McDonald’s) both laptop in front of me. The real answer is how do I use them. Just like when you are in a transitional phase (between El Capitan and macOS Sierra for example): when you work on one and goes to the second and back to the first one. IS there’s something you are missing ?

Is “YES !”, you have your answer. In my case, I miss the Touch Screen on my MacBook Pro. In the first minute os use, I really miss it.

Beatrix: it is not a matter of having both hands “in the air” for hours, it is just a matter of convenience: it is easier to press a button on the screen vs moving the cursor (with either the Touch Pad and / or the Mouse).

We have the same thing ith cars: you understand your car’s brake is near the end when you drive your wife / husband’s car. Same with other parts of the car (if the tires are larger on one car, brake will work more efficiently).

And to really be able to talk about that, you have to try by yourself. Talking without experience is to be avoided (at best). You have the right to have an opinion, but you better try by yourself.

Now, can we talk about the Touch Pad vs Mouse ? More than 14 years ago, I had an iBook, the laptop by Apple. I had troubles with the Touch Pad. So much troubles that I get a Mouse (with cable) and use it only.
Now, and because I do not have so much space on the table(s) I use, I ended by using the Touch Pad nearly exclusively on my MacBook Pro. [Note: on the Windows 10 machine, I cannot really use its Tpouch Pad, probably because it is bad. I always use a cable less Mouse. On the other hand, I have troubles when I forget the Mouse, trying to use the enclosed stylet, mostly because of Windows, I think. Because I cannot compare with a macOS machine, I cannot exclude that I have to train myself to use the pen.

At last, isn’t it a price problem for Apple (to propose Touch Screen hardware) ?

  1. Once you put your hands on a Touch Screen computer (laptop or desktop *), your opinion have the same value as mine.
  • Did you play Solitaire with a Touch Screen machine ? (a 21" Touch Screen ?) Think !

I don’t see any controversy about it in the web. It actually makes a lot of sense to replace the function keys with something more adaptable to the front application. It can help reduce the amount of commands on a toolbar.

They probably won’t. It does not make sense. It is this old misunderstanding starting with the Xerox Alto: the idea that symbols on the monitor would make computers more accessible – and touching them would help even more. In reality the GUI made the computers clumsier. What a computer user needs is a manageable mental model of what he is working with. Note that I wrote “computer user”. Mobile phone and tablet users are not really using their devices as computers (which they are nowadays). They still use them as communication devices only.

All these reviewers are paid for directly or indirectly (by getting the devices or software for free or with discounts). There is not one review of anything IT-related in the web which deserves the word “review”.

First: the two things are not an xor case. Secondly: here to stay.

Note: I just bought three MacBook Pro (mid 2015 without touchbar).

Buttons ? What buttons ? Oh, old fasion user interface !!!

Now, everyone use Siri.

Someone recalls the Knowledge Navigator ?

The video is available @ youtube.

A healthy position with your head down alldaylong. If a touchbar is an outstanding feature then I am missing the consequence. Why isn’t apple adopting it in all his Mac Books? It’s an experiment, and sorry I do not have time to play my role as crash test dummy on an expensive pro product. IMHO this MBP Pro generation is a fail.

I just tried a couple days ago macOS with the touch interface of the iPad while using Duet Display, and have to admit it is pretty nice. I thought the very small controls, in particular menus, would not work well with fingers, but it is actually quite easy.

This whole thing about “Apple will never do this or that” feels a bit hysteric.

Because one of Tim Cook’s minions decided to explain to us we don’t need touch screens, does not imply he is right. Unless one believes all what is Apple is sacred and all deviation from dogma is apostasy , it should not hurt to exchange ideas.

The Touch Bar is nice. Actually, the idea has been floating around for quite a while, and somehow I wonder why they did not have something like that in iOS before. There has been enough prototypes of keyboards with redefinable covers as well. Not quite sure it is a revolution, though.

I think Microsoft is onto something with the Surface Studio. Reclining to almost horizontal a giant screen onto which the pencil plays the same role as with a drawing table is a brilliant idea. The sheer size of the screen makes it a much easier tool than a 13" one. Would it not be great to have a 27" iMac that does the same thing, and more ?

Now, I really hope it were possible to have a dispassionate discussion about possible features, without some screaming for excommunication.


Just wait a year or 2… For many 40 is about the time they start needing to use reading glasses…

When I reached 40 it was like someone threw a switch and my close up vision started to go downhill.

  • Karen

The same thing happened to me at 45. And within four or five days. It hasn’t gotten worse (or better) since then, but I still sometimes think back at how fantastic it was to look at things without glasses.

  • The Touchbar can be useful but it should NOT have replaced the row of function keys which are now muscle memory for many people.

  • I have no idea if it’s here to stay. If you see it appear on Apple’s wired and wireless keyboards then yeah, it will probably be around for a while.

  • Note that Touchbar and touchscreens are not mutually exclusive. As Beatrix points out you can’t really mix tablet and desktop working positions. (Of if you do, you are going to end up with severe repetitive stress injuries.) The idea that a touchscreen would kill the Touchbar ignores this, and also ignores the fact that even when a MacBook is in your lap, with a more comfortable touch distance, the Touchbar = more screen real estate (in a sense).

  • I imagine Apple will sooner or later have to make MacBooks with touch sensitive screens. I don’t have a problem with that. I DO have a problem with the slow conversion of desktop UIs into tablet UIs. Desktops / notebooks serve very different functions from phones / tablets. While adding a touch sensitive screen to a MacBook would not detract from macOS, converging the UI with iOS would do great harm.

  • As I’ve said else where any version of Windows >7 is now a non-starter for me. I only run them in secured virtual machines. Microsoft’s behavior borders on being ‘creepy stalker’ level. So I would not own a Surface Pro or an Xbox One. Microsoft could give me one of their devices and I would simply resell it and spend the money else where.

I don’t much care about the last point except that Apple is slowly becoming a consumer electronics company, as illustrated by both the Mac Pro ‘trash can’ and the last round of no-port MacBook ‘Pros’. Their software QC has also gone down hill.

I think Apple is being kinda silly about the TouchBar and Removable Touch Screen being a ‘one or the other’ solution.

The argument that a touch screen is a bad idea because your arms will get tired doesn’t make sense. You still have a keyboard and trackpad. Having a touch screen would just be another option where you’d rip the screen off the keyboard and hold it like an iPad. There have been times when my brain was in ipad mode and I touched my MacBook Pro screen and felt silly when it did nothing.

The TouchBar is neat. It’s like we still need something like fkeys but smarter. Buttons work well for screen brightness, volume, and controlling audio. However, TouchBar can be dynamic and is multitouch which could be crazy useful for many apps. In the end, it’s still holding onto the concept of fkeys. Apple made a mistake in removing the Esc key though.

Having a Touch Screen that can work without the keyboard, iPad style, is also neat. You can use it as a normal laptop or as a tablet. It’s useful in both configurations. I got my hands on a Surface Pro the other day. It was amazing, except for having to use Windows.

Hardware is evolving. Other than how the OS works, I’d move from my MacBook Pro to an iPad with a mouse and keyboard. Both devices are screens with inputs. I think the Microsoft has it figured out. Merging Laptops and Tablets is an amazing way to go.

I think my next device might be a Surface Book, but I’ll run Mac OS on it via VMWare. I’m just glad I don’t need a new machine right now.

Take the iPad Pro, remove iOS, install OSX, and for me, all these discussion would go away

And add a mouse! :slight_smile:

As it stands, macOS UI works just fine on an iPad. True, larger controls would somewhat help, but the huge mistake of Windows 8 has proven that it is silly to imagine desktop with a phone interface. I do hope Apple never succombs to the idea that iOS UI would be good for macOS.

The iPad Pro is the Surface of Apple. Only them do not want to admit it :wink:


ooohhhh… Never thought of this… Let us know how you get on…

I was thinking that MS might do well to offer a ‘Boot Camp’ of sorts whereby they provide the drivers an a mechanism for installing the macOS from a USB stick on to this machine, but of course not the actual macOS itself, then create a mac application that makes it easy for end users to create a bootable USB stick, once the machine is running macOS, then to install the drivers and assist the user in migrating their stuff from a proper Mac to the Surface Book.

Just like Boot Camp helped Windows users to migrate to an Apple machine…

That’s already the case. If you press on the CNTRL button the Function keys are shown in the Touchbar.

It is funny most people who are complaining about the Touchbar, do not even own a new MBP (yet). And don’t know sh*t how it works/feels and helps improving access to the normally, buried menu driven options. Yet, they have the urge to write about it how a stupid innovation it is. :wink:

Remember, the Touchbar is not a touchscreen replacement, and don’t want to be a touchscreen replacement either. However, it is making the space, normally occupied by bulky functions keys, more flexible/powerful and still keeping the damn old F keys if needed.

My daughter has a Surface Pro 4
In fact, it is a good device and the optional keyboard is prety neat too. Still, it runs Windows 10. I don’t like Windows. I tried, a lot of times, but it fails for me.
macOS is such a relief and a very very good reason to stick to Apple products, at least for me.