rMBP, a alpha, beta, or RC product release?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sofianito, Jul 10, 2012.

  1. sofianito macrumors 65816

    sofianito

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    #1
    In software and hardware development, a product goes through different stages and different versions in those stages before it is released: alpha1, alpha2,..., beta1,...,betax, release candidate1,..., til it gets released. Then, there are hotfixes, patches, patch bundles, updates,...etc then it goes again in the loop through the development life cycle.

    The main difference between software and hardware development life cycle is that in the former you can afford to make your alpha, beta, RC releases available to the public in order to improve the quality and design of your software by detecting and fixing bugs and issues in earlier stages. Obviously, in HW it is not possible to do so. Sometimes ago, I read somewhere that Steve Jobs used to take product versions at home and test them thoroughly. He was an alpha, beta, RC tester!, had control and was influential during all the product development stages.

    Do you think that after he passed away, Apple relaxed too much and is losing this important key value, which is delivering quality products that are state of art in engineering, design, and usability?

    Do you think Apple rushed in releasing a product that was not ready for prime time? Do you think it was in a release candidate, beta, or even in alpha stage?
     
  2. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

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    #2
    The hardware in the MBPr is great, albiet lacking a few ports... but never the less, the hardware is great.

    The software is beta, at best though. Wait until ML is released, I think you'll see the MBPr really shine then.
     
  3. gmanist1000 macrumors 68030

    gmanist1000

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    #3
    I highly doubt it.
     
  4. Funkenstein macrumors regular

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    #4
    I agree. Excited for delivery but cannot wait for ML's release.
     
  5. iEnvy macrumors 65816

    iEnvy

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    #5
    I agree with this. I think Apple planned the release of the MBPr accordingly. We might see shipping times move faster once ML gets released.
     
  6. VFC, Jul 10, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2012

    VFC macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Well it's obvious Apple engineers were concerned about graphics performance before they released the rMBP. That's why they overclocked the discrete video card and used CPU assisted scrolling in Safari.

    It appears the changes were too little too late, so they released it anyway hoping they could tweak some more performance out of the OS after product release. So Apple has essentially gambled with the early adopter's money.

    So if Steve Jobs were still around, would the rMBP have been released anyway? Would Steve have approved the release but pinched the supply pipeline so tight that only a few of the Apple-faithful early-adopters would be affected: knowing that they almost always let Apple slide when they release a product not ready for prime time?
     
  7. Trey M macrumors 6502a

    Trey M

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    #7
    It's really not at all gambling with money. It's not like the machine completely sucks and is unusable in any way. It's a scrolling lag, not a defective video card. And if you hate it so much Apple gives you the option to return it. Also, Mountain Lion tests have at least shown some increase in performance with the scrolling lag, regardless of what you believe. This issue is terribly overblown and I've hardly noticed it.
     
  8. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #8
    How did you come to this question anyway? Sure, rMBP hasn't been around that long yet but it appears to have less hardware issues than many other products (Apple products included).

    Software-wise, there is some merit to what you say. But Mountain Lion is included with each rMBP purchase and its only a few days away.
     
  9. SphericalPear macrumors member

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    #9
    highly agree: beta product

    no software for it yet, many flaws, etc...

    so the question is, why did apple release it so prematurely? to reassure shareholder worries about post-jobs trajectory? because of competitors?
     
  10. VFC, Jul 10, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2012

    VFC macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    But if future OS tweaks do not make scrolling smooth as silk in all areas and high-end games run smooth at retina resolution & ultra settings; then many of the early adopters will end up selling their rMBP at something less than what they paid for it (that's including the cost of Apple care and accessories).

    You can return it in 14 days, but the ML release will occur after the timer has expired on the early adopter folks.

    BTW - Scrolling smoothness is the number one criteria for comparing tablets and the standard that Apple set for all their products. So if it doesn't scroll silky smooth, then it's no different than a cheap MS laptop.
     
  11. Trey M macrumors 6502a

    Trey M

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    #11
    The way you said that you made it sound like the #1 priority when buying a laptop is the fluidity of scrolling. The thing has a fast SSD, 2.3 GHZ Ivy Bridge, incredible display, etc. But it's not "no different than a cheap MS laptop" because of one issue that a lot of people aren't even noticing. Now I've seen videos of it by posters on here that have been really bad (as in the lag was very apparent) examples of it, and I'm not downplaying the issue to say it doesn't matter, because it does, but there was a post a few hours ago that had about 10 people who noticed the lag claiming it was gone in ML. It was pretty obvious all along it was a software issue and nothing more.

    And what're you talking about early adopters selling less than what they paid for? Obviously you're not going to make money when you buy a laptop and use it for a year.

    As for your point about scrolling for tablets- I can agree that that was a big factor in determining and grading some Android tablets. But the scrolling is Android (particularly honeycomb) showed how poorly the OS would run on a freakishly specced machine. That's why it was graded- because even something with a really powerful processor was incapable of running poorly due to that part of the OS. Even though it's essentially the same issue with the rMBP, the issue is non-existent on the cMBP that has the exact same software and exact same processor. This proves that it's an issue with software implementation on the rMBP and it has reportedly already been fixed in ML.
     
  12. pgiguere1 macrumors 68020

    pgiguere1

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    #12
    The hardware seems 100% complete to me, not any less than any product Apple releases. The software however is another story... Like I explained in another thread, I think Apple should have waited for the release of ML to start shipping the rMBP for a lot of reasons.
     
  13. VFC, Jul 10, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2012

    VFC macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    I won't be so fast in declaring mission accomplished. The "10" people running 10.8 GM said Safari scrolling is smooth but Chrome, Mission Control, and TextEdit is still jerky.

    What Apple is apparently doing is tweaking the "CPU assist" in Safari; basically improving the "band-aid". If that's the case, they will have to rework every application that scrolls graphics quickly.

    I'm not sure how much control Apple has over their app vendors, but the same type of band aid will have to be applied to those apps as well over time; including MS Office.

    And the problem doesn't exist in the cMBP because the iGPU/dGPU are more than adequate to move the 1440x900 res very smoothly; no need for the "CPU assist" band aid.
     
  14. Trey M macrumors 6502a

    Trey M

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    #14
    I posted in your other thread and agreed that Apple should've waited, but other than laggy scrolling, what other software deficiencies are there? I know some third party applications would be updated, but obviously not very many seeing that ML will likely announce within the next 20 days and we have yet to hear any big news.

    ----------

    There are always updates pushed for Macs that simply state "performance enhancements". Probably about once a month. If every application, like Text Edit, contacts, and others that are provided by Apple are showing noticeable lag, then Apple will have to tweak the scrolling from the OS level, not on an application by application basis. Most everything I've read has stated that the safari issue has been corrected, an application that was probably the target of focus for Apple to improve before submitting the ML GM. If it truly is fixed, it shows that everything can in fact be fixed by software enhancements, band-aid or not.

    Chrome Canary fixes the scroll lag, showing Google is capable of tweaking their scrolling as well. As for 3rd party apps like MS Office, is scrolling really something to hold a potential buyer back for a 3rd party app? If everything else is getting fixed, it's obviously Microsofts fault for not pushing the retina/scrolling update fast enough. If you're going to not buy the Retina because of MS performance, the bigger issue would be the pixellated appearance, not scroll lag.
     
  15. VFC, Jul 10, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2012

    VFC macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    I really, really wanted to buy the rMBP; but realized early on the 2012 GPUs were not powerful enough to drive the retina resolution smoothly.

    I ended up getting the cMBP. At least with the classic, I have all four CPUs available and no graphics "performance enhancement" band-aids.

    The rMBP is essentially a tri-core because it has one of the CPUs tied up assisting the GPU.
     
  16. Trey M macrumors 6502a

    Trey M

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    #16
    When the dedicated GPU is running then the CPU isn't assisting graphics in any way. And MS Office is no where near unusable. I've had to use it several times and though it isn't pretty to look at like the rest of the apps are it's still 100% functional and just as easy to use.
     
  17. Aldaris macrumors 65816

    Aldaris

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    #17
    I just got mine Saturday, and it is really sweet. I have not experienced anything horrible, and it's is true that websites and apps aren't always what you'd expect-but who really had a heads up to build retina apps and retina class web pages (even apple.com is not 100% there yet).

    Is it livable? Yes. Will it only get better in the future? Yes. So to me it was a GM release with ML 10.8 only mere weeks away. The tweaked 10.7.4 is livable and hopefully iWork's gets updated to retina class (even opening new templates now there are issues.)
     
  18. pgiguere1 macrumors 68020

    pgiguere1

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    #18
    It's really just laggy scrolling and iWork not being updated, the rest in the hands of third-party developers, but given all the discussion around the scrolling (I don't recall seeing an "issue" being that discussed since the iPhone 4's antennagate), I think that scrolling alone along with the insufficient stock would have deserved a later release for better public perception. I'm sure if they announced a July availability at WWDC instead of "Shipping now", some people would have complained (there will always be complainers no matter what), but nowhere as much as people making a big deal out of scrolling and availability issues.
     
  19. VFC, Jul 10, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2012

    VFC macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    That's mostly true. The high-end games that currently can not run smoothly (near 60fps) at retina resolution and ultra settings could be "tweaked" to off-load more of the graphics processing to the CPU.

    However, I'm not sure how feasible that would be and how many game companies would make that investment for a relatively small base of users (this would only apply to the 2012 rMBP base).
     
  20. Trey M macrumors 6502a

    Trey M

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    #20
    You definitely can't look at this forum and base anything off of that. The antennagate scandal was national news for weeks and weeks, literally it was the front cover on the NYT site for hours. Now, obviously wayyy less people have the Retina MBP, but still, I'd think very few people outside the tech-savvy individuals on this forum have noticed anything regarding scrolling.

    I do think it's crap that Apple didn't even update their iWork suite, that just baffles me....unless they were saving it to be ML only or something along those lines, it's complete crap they can't even update their own apps that millions of Mac owners have. If they were just holding out for ML to release the update for compatibility reasons, though, I guess that's understandable.

    ----------

    Agreed that it wouldn't be a worthwhile investment from game developers until at least some other machines start using high-res displays. But games are the only situation where I would see any CPU usage being taken from the system resources to power the Retina display, so I wouldn't say that's a con to buying the machine.
     
  21. wethackrey macrumors 6502

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    #21
    I disagree with the entire premise here. I've been using a new MBPr for a bit over a week now. I'm transitioning from a fairly new 17" MBP. The "lag" issue is so minor as to be comical. I was concerned migrating from the real estate of a 17" display, but a week with the retina has sold me. I've seen zero issues that would lead one to believe that Apple released the MBPr with either hardware or software anything less than fully baked.

    I have a developer seed of the GM of 10.8 on an external drive. I played with it a bit last night. I don't have much in the way of applications installed on it at this point, by whatever Safari "lag" issues I've been ablke to recreate under Lion don't seem to be there in Mountain Lion.
     
  22. IceAero macrumors newbie

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    #22
    ...people use Safari?

    I'm pretty sure Safari has been in alpha for about a decade, so nothing that has transpired with the rMBP surprises me. Just need Firefox to hurry up and update.
     
  23. Fortimir macrumors 6502a

    Fortimir

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    #23
    THIS TIMES A MILLION. Seriously. It doesn't lag much more than my 2011 iMac. It's not even distracting. And all this nonsense about lagging will be a distant dream once everyone is running Mountain Lion.
     

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