Apple Says Touchscreen Macs 'Not a Particularly Useful or Appropriate Application of Multi-Touch'

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 31, 2016.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    CNET has published an extended interview with Jony Ive in which the Apple design chief discusses some of the design decisions that went into developing the Touch Bar in the company's new MacBook Pro lineup.

    The contextual OLED Touch Bar replacing the function keys on the new Macs was developed for at least two years, during which time Ive's team explored the idea of larger, haptic-rich trackpads. According to Ive, "a number of designs" were explored that "conceptually make sense", but were later rejected.


    Ive explained that his team's point of departure was to see if there was a way of designing a new input that could be contextually specific and adaptable, yet also something that was mechanical and fixed. This required the development of a "difficult prototype" with a mature software environment, in order to work out if the idea had any real-world traction.
    Ive said that after testing the designs, his team were unanimously "very compelled" by the Touch Bar as a viable input device, but that the real challenge was to integrate it into a specific product without compromising its existing design.
    Asked if the Mac community's expectations and emotional ties to their devices affects his design considerations, Ive emphasized that his team "don't limit ourselves in how we will push - if it's to a better place", although "what we won't do is just do something different that's no better".

    Apple has published detailed design guidelines on how developers should use the Touch Bar, steering them away from use cases that would suggest it functions as a second display. When pushed, Ive refused to elaborate on why Apple "doesn't think a touchscreen is a particularly useful or appropriate application of multitouch", because it would lead him to have to talk about things his team are currently working on.

    However, reiterating comments made in an earlier interview with Apple executives Phil Schiller and Craig Federighi, Ive said that incorporating the Touch Bar "is the beginning of a very interesting direction" for the Mac. Rumors have circulated recently that Apple is considering introducing a customizable e-ink keyboard in future Macs, possibly next year, although the veracity of these claims remains unclear.

    You can read CNET's full interview with Jony Ive here.

    Article Link: Apple Says Touchscreen Macs 'Not a Particularly Useful or Appropriate Application of Multi-Touch'
  2. Floris, Oct 31, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2016

    Floris macrumors 68020


    Sep 7, 2007
    Try saying that to my mom who's so used to the iPad now that she keeps touching the MacBook Pro's screen when dad shows her a picture from a new email, and she tries to pinch to zoom and swipe to check for more pictures.
  3. NachoGrande macrumors 6502a

    Mar 30, 2010
    Innovation passing Apple by.. Maybe it's time to clear house... but then who would make all of the aluminium housings...
  4. Tamagotchi macrumors 6502


    Jun 13, 2013
  5. racingbull macrumors regular


    Aug 16, 2013
    Happens to me, too, after I've worked on my iPad Pro for some time... really annoying switching and not having touch. :(
  6. robertcoogan macrumors 6502


    Apr 5, 2008
    Joshua Tree, California
    I remember an interview not long ago (I think it was 60 Minutes) where Time Cook said that he used his iPad for everything. Like it was going to replace the conventional PC. At least now we know not everyone at Apple thinks this way (Thank God). Tablets are not PCs.
  7. magicschoolbus macrumors 65816


    May 27, 2014
    I'd like to see these prototypes.

    The touch bar seems like it's a bit of a gimmick. I can't see it increasing workflows.
  8. mcdspncr macrumors regular


    Jul 2, 2011
    I agree, the Touch Bar gives all the contextually appropriate benefits of multitouch without having to place your hands in an un-ergonomic angle, and mark up the screen. It seems to make a lot of sense to me, however in addition to the touch bar, including a full multitouch monitor would be nice for those who insist on poking at the screen. And seriously, now that we have a giant trackpad why no support for the Pencil??
  9. Trusteft macrumors 6502a


    Nov 5, 2014
    I find the idea of a touchscreen on a laptop, not particularly be polite. I am sure there are people who like it. I am not one of them. I don't want to have fingerprints, dirt, etc on the screen. I want it to be as clear as possible without having to clean it 10 times a day. Also, fingers are just too fat to replace a mouse cursor and they block the view.
  10. iapplelove macrumors 601


    Nov 22, 2011
    East Coast USA
    I think Ive had gone as long as he could. I dunno his magic is starting to dry up.
  11. erzhik macrumors 6502

    Dec 2, 2010
    Laptops with touchscreens are extremely useful. Ask any Surface Book or any other touchscreen laptop owner. None of them would ever go back to a laptop without touchscreen. And a touchscreen is a hell of a lot more useful than a Touch Bar.
  12. DCIFRTHS macrumors 6502a


    Jan 25, 2008
    Seems like Apple execs are trying to justify the design of their new "baby".
  13. Elbon macrumors 6502a


    Jan 9, 2008
    Boston, MA
    If I can find one, I'll be sure to ask.
  14. moep macrumors member

    Jun 9, 2004
    note the order of these attributes

    perhaps he should just sell Apple branded A4 paper sheets and leave the notebook design to computer engineers
  15. Ries macrumors 68020

    Apr 21, 2007
    They would say the same about desktop models. Yet there it is, the Microsoft Studio and Wacom.
  16. TigerWoodsIV macrumors 6502a

    Apr 3, 2010
    Touching a laptop screen is overrated. I would lose my mind about having to constantly clean it if I did. It's why I haven't used my old iPad since the iPhone 6 came out with a big enough screen. The only thing I struggle with is the cost of the new MBPs with the Touch Bar and wondering how it will be incorporated to do really functional work. The early things seem kind of like a gimmick, and my MBP spends a lot of time glued to an external display anyway with a keyboard and mouse.
  17. Wayfarer, Oct 31, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2017

    Wayfarer macrumors 65816


    Jun 15, 2007
    Innovative! Revolutionary! Forward-thinking! ;)
  18. yegon macrumors 68030

    Oct 20, 2007
    A touch screen on OSX in it's current form, meh.

    Touch Bar, meh meh meh.

    A fictional MBP with a detachable screen & pen support, a touch screen would be great.

    Unfortunately, Apple is sticking to old paradigms until at least 2019.

    That Schiller moment of "innovate my ass" is looking increasingly embarrassing now, doubly so given the state of the Mac Pro.

    Sad times.
  19. levitynyc macrumors 65816

    Aug 19, 2006
  20. honglong1976 macrumors 65816


    Jul 12, 2008
    Touch-bar is really a great idea! But so is a touchscreen.

    If the new Macbook Pro had both touchbar and touchscreen it would be a winner! But then what would be the feature of the next Macbook Pro? Maybe touchscreen. If they released an Apple Macbook Pro that did everything, there would be no need to upgrade. Apple do seem to hold back features on purpose!

    We are all so used to using smart phone and tablets, a laptop screen has to be touchscreen nowadays!
  21. ghostface147 macrumors 68030


    May 28, 2008
    Staff meeting on MacBook Pro:

    The best way to annoy our users is to make them use dongles for everything.
  22. Mindcrime macrumors regular


    Oct 24, 2003
    Houston, Texas
    My guess is apple isn't doing touchscreen because:
    a) it'll increase the price of already expense products

    b) getting their version of retina to work with touch might be a big problem and

    c) it'll make the z-height on their notebooks bigger (you need a counterweight down by the touchpad so people don't knock the computer over when using the touch panel), and apple is already compressing these notebooks as far as (currently) humanly possible.

    Also, given Apple's track record of innovating by removing features ppl actually use, if we did get touch panels they'd be in black and white or something.

    That said, the magic finger bar is one those where you go "meh, sure, why not?" but I don't think it's revolutionizing computing. It's certainly no substitute for touch panels.
  23. R.T. macrumors member


    Jun 13, 2016
    Isn't that what the larger trackpad is for? You can do things like pinch to zoom and other multitouch gestures that are also done on touchscreens. To be honest I prefer doing all that stuff on my trackpad than on my screen.
  24. dwaltwhit macrumors 6502


    Oct 25, 2013
    I tried using a friend's touchscreen laptop. After about 3 minutes, my wrist started to hurt. It's not even a matter of aesthetic or design; it just hurts.
  25. Thunderhawks Suspended

    Feb 17, 2009
    We get it: You are shipping a prototype and let Apple users pay for it.

    You also didn't go all the way as in deciding and implementing that another input method may be advantageous.

    Pair the iPhone and iPads etc. with an app to the Macs (MBPs or iMac etc.) and those who want that can input things that way can do so.
    (We can already do plenty of things with the external trackpads)

    Then include that functionality into macOS, so whatever happens on the iPhone and iPad shows up on the Mac with the visual eye candy the strip is supposed to be.

    Best of both worlds.

    While you are at asking "pros" if they use the audio port, ask them if they REALLY WANT a thinner and lighter MBP with less ports and minute dimensional and weight savings and 16GB.

    Then admit that even Apple is sometimes wrong!

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