Touch Bar Productivity Feedback from Pro Users

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by acetinick, Nov 17, 2016.

  1. acetinick macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2011

    I am a long time MBP user and am looking at the getting a fully spec'd 13" MBP with touch bar. I personally don't care about the touch bar but am looking at this model because it's the only way to get the higher spec'd CPU, another example of Apple's horrible up selling techniques.

    I have some major concerns over it's use for pro users of the MBP and if it has affected their productivity. I would love to hear what how effective/ineffective it has been for you guys before I splash out on it.

    I would define a pro user as someone who uses it daily for programming/design rather than just for basic operations.

  2. badlydrawnboy macrumors 65816

    Oct 20, 2003
    I'm not a developer, but here's my impression so far. TouchID is really useful, especially if you're a 1Password user. The TB itself... eh, not sure. I haven't found much use for it yet. I don't know whether this is because I use keyboard shortcuts so heavily, and the TB doesn't beat the speed of that, or whether I'm just not accustomed to it.

    One thing you should be aware of, though, is the poor batter life reports for the tMBP 13". I'm getting about 6.5-7 hours per full charge. Much worse than the 2013 MBA I was hoping to replace with this.
  3. KlytusLord, Nov 20, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2016

    KlytusLord macrumors regular

    Apr 11, 2011
    If anything, the touch bar has affected my productivity in a negative way due to accidental touches and having to take additional care (i.e. to not touch the wrong spot) and time finding items that were easily accessible before.

    The Touch ID feature is "nice" but typing my password was roughly 3 seconds, so it's not really a world-changing benefit.

    Some touch bar app controls are just plain idiotic. Take the 1Password app mentioned by the previous user: When starting 1Password the app control displayed on the touch bar is "Unlock." It is faster, easier, and much more natural to simply hit the Return key after typing in your password to unlock 1Password than it is to reach for the touch bar's image "button" to perform the same task. At least for now, I am seeing a whole lot of of pointless stuff appearing on the touch bar just so that apps can claim they use the latest gimmick.

    When typing, as in while writing this post, you get some word suggestions on the touch bar iOS style. I don't know about others, but if I have a full keyboard in front of me I can type everything faster than taking the time to see what words were suggested and selecting one if it happens to guess correctly. This feature makes sense in iOS where typing is tedious to begin with, but I have not been helped by it at all on a full size computer with a physical keyboard.

    I, like you, got the new MBP for the upgraded specs, and the slightly smaller size than its predecessor has been a bonus, of not significant benefit. The touch bar has been either pointless or an actual hinderance for me.

    I am having to make certain positioning adjustments, i.e. where I place my hands when not typing, that will take some time to get used to, sine these are habits developed over several decades for me. I can make them, of course, but at least in my case, I am having to make them for no benefit at all, since the touch bar is not an improvement in my case.

    Pro apps I use with regularity:

    FileMaker Pro

    Of course, I also constantly use all of the basic office and every day like apps, such as MS Office, Omni Group apps, mail, etc.

    Is the laptop worth it the price? To me, yes.
    Is the touch bar something I am liking or see a future benefit in? For the things I do, no, not even a little.
  4. benz240 macrumors regular

    Dec 25, 2008
    Extremely well put, and as a current owner of the 15" touchbar MBP, I agree with this 100%. The touchbar as it exists right now is a solution in search of a problem, nothing more.
  5. Cvx5832 macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2014
    Same experience here. It's "cute" right now, but let's wait and see what developers and Apple themselves eventually do with it.

    The functions so far that I know have been an improvement (for me) due to the TB are -

    - I now have a sleep button next to my Touch ID. It's so much easier to lock the machine with a single tap. Having the watch also allows me to get back into my work, likewise with a single tap of any key on the keyboard

    - Brightness and Volume sliders benefit from one-touch-then-slide. Quicker (and easier) to dial in the right amount

    I'm sure the TouchBar's usefulness will improve as the technology matures!
  6. badlydrawnboy macrumors 65816

    Oct 20, 2003
    Things I like about TB:
    • TouchID as way of unlocking computer, authorizing purchases, and accessing my 1Password vault (this is the biggest one, because I have a 22-character master password that is hard to type).
    • Volume and brightness are easier to adjust
    But that's really it. I'm a heavy keyboard shortcut user and just can't see the TB being faster than those for anything other than what I mentioned above.

    And the downside of the TB with the 13" version, at least, seems to be battery life. I'm not getting more than 7 hours a charge, and as you can see from other threads on this subject, I'm not the only one.

    I'm probably going to return this and get the 13" non-TB version.

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