A touchscreen MacBook ever?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by csjcsj, Feb 6, 2019.

  1. csjcsj macrumors regular


    Feb 15, 2011
    Sarasota FL
    I really want new laptop, but my dream machine would be a touchscreen MBP, or Adobe porting full versions of Illustrator and InDesign to the iPad (not likely). I don’t want to buy a new MBP now in case one with a touch screen might come out, but does anyone have a guess as to whether or not that might really happen?

    I can’t just buy a cheap laptop (Mac or windows) because of the hardware requiments of the Adobe software.
  2. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    All anybody can offer on this is speculation...

    As such - Apple's "current wisdom" has always been that a touchscreen doesn't work ergonomically on a laptop or desktop because it would be uncomfortable to continually reach over the keyboard ("gorilla arms" syndrome) and that an operating system needs to be optimised for either touch (iOS) or pointer (Mac OS) and can't be both.

    I think there's a lot of validity in that - plus I expect Apple will be sticking to that policy until the day they announce a touch-screen Mac. The workaround to "gorilla arms" is to produce some sort of convertible/hybrid such as Microsofts Surface/Surface Book/Surface Studio range. I doubt that Apple would do that anytime soon because it would self-compete with the iPad range, and all the smoke signals from Apple at the moment is that (sadly) they're far more enthusiastic about the iPad than the Mac.

    So, if I had to guess, I'd say "don't hold your breath" - meanwhile, Adobe has already announced "full" Photoshop CC for iPad so I'd suggest that its marginally more likely that the other CC apps will appear on iPad first.

    What might prove me wrong is Apple's "Project Marzipan" - running iOS Apps on the Mac - and although I'm assuming that will include some sort of translation layer between pointer and touch it could be the incentive for Apple to stick a touchscreen on the Mac.

    NB: Don't shoot the messenger - pretty much every laptop or all-in-one comparable to the Mac includes a touchscreen so IMO Apple should stop faffing around, stick one on and let the users worry about their gorilla arms and greasy fingers. Or, let us run MacOS on the iPad Pro... the last batch of iPads released in October would be far more interesting than the ~Meh Mini or MacBook Meh if only they weren't knobbled with iOS.
  3. bigtomato macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2015
    there are cheap clones of Wacom that let you attach and external type of tablet, I believe its called the XPen, look it up on amazon. Its 15" and works well but only with a pen but haven't tried my fingers. It only cost me $400 Canadian so for what it does its fantastic.
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I agree with Steve Jobs: touchscreen on a notebook is a terrible idea.

    "This doesn't work."
  5. Pakaku macrumors 68020


    Aug 29, 2009
    Anything touch-related is probably going to be limited to iOS, because the OS is optimized for touch, and because they get to sell more things.

    It would be nice if Apple offered a native way to dock an iPad and stream from a computer to it over a cable or wirelessly. The Pro already supports USB-C, so that should be as much bandwidth as the video feed would need. Duet already proved it's possible, so I don't get why Apple hasn't done it themselves.
  6. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    That's not as bad as a 12.9" iPad with a smart keyboard, where you're forced to reach over the keyboard for many operations that rely on touch... and Apple still offer those.

    The "gorilla arms" argument is based on two premises:
    1. You're going to use the touch screen continually instead of the mouse/trackpad, rather than just some instances where being able to interact with the screen directly is better than using a pointer.
    2. You rule out any thought of designing a "convertible" device where the screen can be swivelled/folded back/removed (as is now offered by most PC makers) for applications that work better with touch.
    Microsoft's Surface, Surface Book and Surface Studio show the way to do it - or would, if MS's prices and tech specs didn't make Macs look like a bargain (plus, google 'sleep of death').

    Apple is unlikely to offer a convertible, because they want you to switch to an iPad and give them a 30% slice of whatever software and services you use.

    I agree. There was an interview about 'Inside Apple's Pro development lab' a year or so ago (can't find it quickly) where they were talking about ways to use Macs and iPads together as a way forward for 'pro' users. Seemed that they'd just re-discovered the Logic Remote app for Logic Pro (which is quite neat - but it has been around for years) and decided it was the best thing since sliced bread so maybe there will be some more progress on that front. However, my impression is that Apple don't want you to use the iPad as a Mac peripheral - they want you to switch to iOS, stop worrying and learn to love the walled garden. After all, why would anybody buy a PC...?

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