The latest updates to the MacBook Pro line has left many creative professionals feeling a little jilted. It’s going to be missing an alarming number of ports, including the immensely important SD card slot. You know — the cross-brand memory card that’s used in all of the major cameras. It’s also lacking a critical number of USB-C ports, including the typical HDMI and USB jacks, and a variety of convenient function keys have gone missing, too. As a result, the newest Pro has unwittingly complicated the average workday for artists, photographers, and designers.
Paul Schiller, VP of Apple marketing, claims the SD slot is too awkward. When he spoke to The Independent, the decision to nix the slot seemed purely an aesthetic one, as he called it a “thing sticking halfway out”. Schiller then went on to explain they could do away with such a critical reader because a growing number of cameras have the ability to transfer data wirelessly.
Unfortunately, the majority of these cameras still encounter problems when transferring this way. Buggy, slow, or missing entirely, these wireless transfers aren’t convenient for professionals who rely on quick and reliable uploads. This is forcing many artists to purchase dongles that interrupt the sleek lines of the Pro even worse than the SD card supposedly did.
This wouldn’t be the first time that Apple got flack for doing away with critical connective jacks. One of the biggest complaints about the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus was over the smartphone’s lack of headphone jacks. At least the traditional headphone jack is still present in the Pro, as Schiller admits that there isn’tenough wireless audio gear on the market to make that attainable — yet.That will change once a sufficient number (according to Apple) is available, but only time will tell when that is.
Meanwhile that’s the least of your woes. The integration of the Touch Bar means the Pro is saying goodbye to hardware function keys, including the escape button. Now they’re hidden behind the fn key, which you’ll need to hold down in order to reveal what they can do. Sure, adding this extra step doesn’t sound too bad, but when you rely on these combos constantly throughout your day, the seconds add up.
Though it’s set to be the thinnest, lightest, and most powerful Pro yet, many people aren’t sure if it’s worth the extra money. Don’t forget the extra dough you’ll lay down for all of the dongles you’ll need to replace missing hardware.
You’ll definitely have to weigh the pros and cons if you rely on SD cards, memory sticks, and the function key shortcuts. If you haven’t yet encountered any performance lags with your current computer, you may as well just stick with it and hope it can last. If you have any doubts that it can survive, you can always get a new MacBook wrap to protect it from scratches, grime, and spills. A MacBook wrap may just be your new best friend as you attempt to keep your old Pro running as long as possible.
Or, you take a chance on the latest generation and see what it can do. The rumors suggest it’ll be the fastest one in the line, so it might be worth the concessions you’ll make.If you don’t mind investing in all of the extra gear you’ll need in order to use your equipment, it might just be a great new laptop.