Apple continued its trend of quietly updating its laptop lineup this week, releasing a few hardware updates for its MacBookPro and MacBook Air computers, while killing off the last of the non-touchbar MacBook Pro options. That’s right, if you want an old-fashioned keyboard with physical function keys, there is no longer a MacBook Pro model for you.
If the loss of the function keys doesn’t bother you, the news is actually quite positive.
Photographers who don’t need much in way of processing power can buy a MacBook Air for $100 less (the Air now starts at $1,100), and Apple’s thinnest laptop now comes with a TrueTone display. If you need a bit more processing power, the 13-inch MacBook Pros have seen a hardware refresh, with the base models featuring quad-core 8th Generation Intel processors instead of the dual-core i5 processors you would have gotten last week.
The $1,300 13-inch MBP now comes with a 1.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 (Turbo Boost up to 3.9GHz), 8GB of RAM, and 128GB of solid state storage. You’ll also get a True Tone display, a TouchBar, and Apple’s T2 chip for additional security and touch ID login. You can upgrade the storage to 256GB or the RAM to 16GB for an extra $200, or step up to a 1.7GHz quad-core i5 for an extra $300.
For some, the step up to the newer generation quad-core processors at the same price will definitely be worth a look. Last year, Adobe released a major update for Lightroom Classic CC that takes better advantage of multiple cores, so you could legitimately see an improvement in processing speed over a dual-core setup.
For others, the fact that they now have to purchase a MacBook Pro with a TouchBar will be enough to disappoint and dissuade them from looking at the latest generation. Those people still have something to celebrate though, because the non-touchbar 13-inch MacBook Pros that were just discontinued have already hit Apple’s refurbished store for up to $210 off.