WWDC 2016 keynote has come and gone, and there’s no hint of any new hardware. No new MacBook Pro. No new Macbook Air. No new MacBook. It’s not that we expect hardware announcements at WWDC, since the conference, after all, is mostly about software. But the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air are getting outdated. One hasn’t been updated in 390 days, the other 460 days.
That’s a really long wait between product refreshes. The average time between refresh for the Retina MacBook Pro is 268 days, and a lengthier 350 days for the MacBook Air.
There had been some rumours, as there always are, of course, that we would see something at WWDC. The MacBooks are in sore need for an upgrade, particularly the Pros and the Airs, but even the much newer 12-inch MacBooks.
Now, the newer 12-inch MacBooks did get a small processor refresh in April this year. But the notebook is still largely the same as at the 1st generation launch. The problem with the 12-inch MacBook, to me, is that it had just one USB Type-C port, thus necessitating that you carry some other accessory to make the notebook useful when you’re working outside of your home or office.
The 12-inch MacBook’s screen was a little on the small-side too, and the processor was a little weak. For many users, the Retina MacBook Pro was a far better choice.
But with the last update over 390 days ago, of course, the Retina MacBook Pro is getting quite dated too.
Now, why does this all matter?
First, of course, that MacBooks are getting less attractive compared with their Wintel counterparts. Oh of course, if you are a Mac user, this is likely to not matter too much. But there’s another reason.
The next release of OS X, which we now know will be renamed to macOS, will drop support for some older Mac hardware. Now, I agree, those are reasonably old hardware and if you’re having some of those around, it’s time to upgrade. But if you want the new macOS, and have a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air that’s not new enough (namely, made in 2010 or later), you don’t have a choice, because macOS will require you to have newer hardware.
So if you’re going to go out buy a new Mac notebook, what do you get?
It seems there’s no good buying options right now.
Yeah. How sad.
Apple loves to sell you hardware. But this time around, they don’t have anything to sell you.
Except, maybe, they want you to buy an iPad Pro instead.
I love OS X, and macOS too I imagine. But I don’t at this time have any interest in iOS. Or watchOS. Maybe Apple knows that, that there is that group of Mac users like me, and they’ve decided it’s time to pull these people wholly into their ecosystem.