Where is Apple ultimately going with their laptop line?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by waywardsage, May 31, 2009.

  1. waywardsage macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    #1
    So a slow tour around the Best Buy computer isle frustrates me. Now, i'm firmly in the mac camp. And i probably will never leave. I love OSX like all the rest of you. But seeing all these incredibly cheep windows macines with:

    HDMI
    eSATA
    Built in Card readers
    Bluray drives!

    Sigh. Where is apple going? How long will it continue to ignore commonly accepted ports and technologies that even $600 laptops at Best Buy have?!!

    I spen $3K plus last year on my macbook pro. And, while its good and all that Apple thought that Display port was worth including at this point. I'm very frustrated that they can't get on board with basic tech that all the other manufacturers have off the bad.

    Sure, unibody is great. But what about those of us who need REAL speed on our external drives (eSATA) Or those of us who want an easy hook up for our HDTV's that contains video and audio (HDMI) or those of us who want to be able to watch our Blu ray laptops on our 1080P capable 17" MBP's?

    I love ya apple. I really do. But saying...well they don't have OSX will only take you so far. Dispite our love of OSX. It doesn't mean your not beholden to your customers!
     
  2. MacManiac76 macrumors 65816

    MacManiac76

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    #2
    HDMI and Blu-Ray would be really nice so as to be able to hook up the laptop to an HDTV and watch BD movies. Sometimes it does seem like Apple is developing in a protective bubble ignoring the outside world. The Apple consumer base is more diverse than ever and it's about time Apple accommodates more of the tech savvy.
     
  3. godslabrat macrumors 6502

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    Aug 19, 2007
    #3
    To some degree, Apple is guilty of trying to manipulate their customers into wanting what is offered, instead of offering what the customers want. BluRay is a great example of this-- you can talk to me all day long about a future when everything is downloaded. Sure, sure, maybe you're right, maybe not. I don't care. The fact remains, BluRay is here today as the dominant mainstream HD format... and as a video professional, I need my computer to be able to read (and design) BluRay. I don't give a rat's ass if it fits into Apple's grande vision of the future... it's what I use my computer for! Apple has some of the best tools in the industry for editing video, why not follow through with media ?

    I suppose the exact same argument could be made for card readers, though that's a MUCH cheaper problem to fix with aftermarket products.

    Again, one could easily argue that the lack of a "headless iMac" midrange tower is Apple trying to push the market into accepting one of three formfactors. Either you buy the Mini and accept that it's a weak computer, get the iMac and have an AIO, or get a Pro and pay TONS more than you want to.

    I'm in the same boat as you: I now love the Apple system to the point where I feel free of Windows and all its headaches... but Apple's crippling of its own products is putting me in a very sticky situation.
     
  4. MarkMS macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 30, 2006
    #4
    The only thing I see coming into the Mac line-up is Blu-ray, even though Jobs said it was a "bag of hurt". HDMI is most likely never coming. Apple has repeatedly said they don't want to use it because DisplayPort boasts higher resolutions especially for their 30" screens. As for card readers and eSATA, I doubt they will ever come. Apple likes to build things aesthetically pleasing even if it means not adding useful ports. Card readers can add bulk to the thinness they are trying to achieve. Luckily, Apple has an ExpressCard port built-in and there are a few ExpressCard card readers/eSATA port controllers out there.
     
  5. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    CA
    #5
    @MarkMS
    Yeah, i understand they want to maintain they're "aesthetic" but come on! It's ridiculous! Are we headed to a day where all the Apple laptops look like the air? And Steve will get up there and talk about how amazing that day is and that we SHOULDN'T want or need cables?

    Sigh..I guess. I feel the cool-aid being carried down the hall and forced down my throat.

    @godslabrat
    well...there ARE alternatives. It just depends on how much $ your wiling to gamble. Look @ what i've found:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...TRK:MEWAX:IT&item=250405792321#ht_3607wt_1080

    Question is: Will it be compatible with my early 2008 Macbook Pro? I have the high rez screen, HDCP compliant card and 12.7mm hight drive space. But I can't figure out what connection that the current drive in my MBP has!
     
  6. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #6
    As a counterargument, Apple seems to be doing just fine financially without offering any of these "features." If it's not broke, don't fix it?
     
  7. MarkMS macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 30, 2006
    #7
    FastMac has one, but it's at an outrageous $999. At least it's guaranteed to be PC and Mac compatible. Also it's PATA.

    http://store.fastmac.com/product_info.php?products_id=338

    Shouldn't the Panasonic drive, you linked to, work?
     
  8. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    #8
    In all my arcane research, yes. It should. This badboy should work:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Panasonic-slot-...UCC%2BUCI%2BUS-BWR&otn=8&ps=33#ht_3652wt_1041

    From everything i can tell, the ATAPI interface is the same as IDE, And i found this interesting link too:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/MATSHITA-Powerb...522?IMSfp=TL090522158009r34116#ht_3077wt_1041

    This drive is the EXACT same height, model number and everything as my current in mac drive. And it looks like an IED (ATAPI) port.

    Should I risk ordering the $179.00?
     
  9. l.a.rossmann macrumors 65816

    l.a.rossmann

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    Brooklyn
    #9

    If it's not broke, don't fix it is different from and should not be confused with If it's not perfect, don't improve it. I agree with the former - I vehemently disagree with the latter.

    The lack of an expresscard, firewire, or PCMCIA slot on a $1200 laptop baffles me and renders it useless for most of the applications I'd designate to a more expensive laptop!

    It's ironic that the cheaper windows machines get put on certain tasks because they allow for more flexibility whereas the machine with the preferable OS that is more expensive gets delegated to web browsing duty because of its lack of peripheral connections.

    My Macbook is not broken just because I can't pour milk into it and expect it to work, but by no means would I suggest that Apple not make it as durable as an IBM that gladly accepts & drains my morning protein shake while remaining fully functional.
     
  10. MarkMS macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    #10
    I would buy it in a heartbeat if I can find an auction with a return policy if the drive doesn't fit. If you have $179 to burn, then go ahead. I want to know if it works before I buy another Intel SSD for my current MBP and since I'm opening it I might as well upgrade to a Blu-ray drive. It's a 15" screen, but at least I can play 720p on the road and 1080p when I'm connected to my secondary display.
     
  11. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #11
    Yes, but "perfect" is a subjective term. Nothing will ever be "perfect" in the sense that it will please everyone. How do you give weight to which "improvements" to make while still maintaining the bottom line? There's a lot more that goes into licensing something like blu-ray than just the cost of the drive.

    What "certain tasks" do you refer to? Lack of a card-reader has never made me think, "Oh man, I should just buy a cheap Windows laptop to transfer my pictures. Lack of a built-in card reader leaves me up a creek without a paddle on my Macbook Pro!"

    Because computers were meant to be submerged in milk? No offense, but no manufacturer is under any obligation to make a computer waterproof.
     
  12. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

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    Oct 24, 2007
    #12
    Vote with your wallet. If Apple's hardware division didn't see substantial growth quarter after quarter (minus the recession) than they would have rethought their strategy.

    Sure, I would love to have hdmi and sixteen usb 3.0 ports, quad graphics , bluray and all the fixin's, but when I bought my MBP before hand I knew that I wouldn't want to author bluray (although I could with premiere/toast but anyway), output to hdmi (dvi to hdmi ftw) and the one USB hub I need to use would suffice for 100% of my devices (performance drives connected via FW800). Imagine that. I actually bought a machine that does what I want it to :eek:.

    If Apple's definition of "pro" not fit your specifications, why bother? OS X and Windows are truly interchangeable. I can't think of a specific function that one can do on a Mac that one can't do on windows. This includes video editing. It may not be as fun working with Final Cut Pro, but there are still alternartives. There are probably little nitch programs that aren't available on the competing product, but for things like e-mail, video editing, photo editing, web browsing, audio engineering, word processing etc, there is always an alternative.

    Now , to get back OT. Apple's laptop line..hrm...well, I somewhat believe that apple is abandoning the "old school" pro market, which placed power over all else. Their firewire chipset choice in the most recent MBPs is less than adequate, 100% glossy (with the exception of the 17") may have been a bit extreme. One measly firewire port may have been too little, but that's just my overall opinion. I could easily fault a particular dell/hp model for not offering me a fingerprint scanner, an intergrated card reader, a wireless a/b/g/n card, or collapsable toaster on the side, but the people have spoken. Consumer outcry from the hundred or so pissed off users here is small compared to masses actually buying computers in Apple stores at this very second.

    Point: Apple isn't the only computer maker on earth. It is the only one where you can legally run OS X, but even then, Mac OS isn't the only platform on earth. The world does not revolve around Steve J., unfortunately.
     
  13. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    CA
    #13
    The "licensing" argument is bull. Go to Best Buy, look at the $800 laptops with built in blu ray. Can't be that expensive can it?

    As for the card reader; sure i can carry around an Express card adaptor....and an apple dongle......and and external blu ray drive......and an eSATA express card adaptor.......

    Oh wait, I thought I dropped $3K on a laptop?

    It's arguments like the previous post that just intrenches outsiders views of Apple folk being snobs.
     
  14. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #14
    No idea. In any case it doesn't seem like cost is the main factor in not including blu-ray drives in the first place.

    Actually, you're the one that is showing a clear sense of entitlement. "Whaa, I spent $3000 on something that doesn't work exactly how I think it should!" Who's the snob here? Grow up.
     
  15. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    CA
    #15
    I appreciated the civility and thought out argument. But again, this is the same "if you don't like it, go somewhere else," attitude that a lot of mac cultists have.

    I AGREE 100% in your supposition that apple is abandoning the pro market. Like you said, glossy only screens, few firewire options, (which is wierd because wasn't apply the lone champion of firewire in the first place?) And this comes after the anouncement of Firewire 1600 and 3200? Why is Apple shooting the horse in the face before its even gotten out of the gate?

    The other flawed argument is: "Well, they're making tons of $, so they're not making any mistakes." This leads back to your previous statement of Apple abandoning the Pro market. Average joes pretty much check their email and plug in their iPods. They could care less about REAL ports and using the computer for WORK.

    It's unfortunate but I think your right. Us Pro users will be regulated to our massive Mac Pro's and unable to carry our work around in laptop form because if by the way things are going....by 2012 all of Apples line will look like the macbook air.
     
  16. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    #16
    No your misunderstanding what I'm saying. I'm saying if you pay $3K for a Pro laptop. It should be....for PRO users. Meaning, including a pro selection of ports, horsepower and options.

    I mean, the Mac Pro has this...so Apple hasn't FULLY forsaken all Pro users. But it seems hellbent on ignoring content producers and going after the consumer market.

    Really, i'd like to see a book written or article written that critically analyzes Apple outside of the "absolute bashing" and "absolute worshiping" category.
     
  17. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #17
    Ah, I see. Well unfortunately your definition of "Pro" and Apple's definition happen to be different. Also, "Options" have never been Apple's strong point.
     
  18. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    #18
    I just don't get why they can't simply offer more options. I mean, all the other manufacturers allow great customization. Except apple.

    I guess i'll carry around my bag of adaptors, connectors and modifiers for now.
     
  19. ravenvii macrumors 604

    ravenvii

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    #19
    As for HDMI, I wonder if those cheap Windows laptops have HDMI that outputs both sound and video? If they do, then I agree, Apple should add that to the laptops. If not, then they shouldn't - one DisplayPort port is fine, it can do HDMI natively, so just get an adapter, there's zero picture degradation, and you can get what you need, instead of having a laptop with 5 different kinds of video outputs.

    As for eSATA and Blu-Ray, I agree 100%.
     
  20. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

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    #20
    Well now I didn't say they don't make any mistakes at all. I'm saying that, based on the evidence (sales figures, overall customer satisfaction, etc) Apple's market research probably somehow figured out a way to minimize cost while appealing to the masses (that is, not adding in additional ports/functionality and what not).

    For instance, to the majority of the people in the "lack of firewire on macbook" thread, Apple made a "huge costly mistake" that "gravely affected their future purchses" and somehow killed their first born, but they fail to account for the 99% of the population who doesn't know or even care about what firewire is. They fail to realize that the majority of the population does not consist of amateur/professional video editors or people who have a billion audio interfaces in some complex studio setup. These people forget that the majority of the population does not need to shuffle around pictures of their cat at firewire speeds. USB will do fine for these folks.

    That's all i'm saying. I'm asking for people to take a look at their surroundings and realize that the people on the forum do not represent the people across the street (unless you live on campus at MIT or something). My family and friends wouldn't look towards their laptop every time they wanted to fire up a bluray in the living room. They would look towards the PS3, or the bluray player they bought specifically for that purpose. My girlfriend knows what USB is, but the minature 1394 port on her machine collects dust because its unused. Even then, she balks at the price of firewire enclosures when there are larger usb based drives sitting right next to it on the shelf.

    Hell take a look at the people on these very boards asking "WTF is this little hole on the side of my macbook pro". This, ladies and gentleman, is an expresscard slot. If Apple were to eliminate it on their next generation machines I would be truly mortified, I would kick and scream, and I would promptly visit the nearest apple store the next morning and whine in the middle of the store, but all my professors, all my coworkers, and all my macbook wielding associates would be fine without that little hole on the side of their macbook pro. If apple were to try and be as brash as to eliminate, say, USB, the public response would be epic. Sales figures would plummet like GM's stock prices (hahaha).

    If Apple can go for two software revisions without MMS and copy and paste on the iPhone, than I guess it wasn't that big of a deal to the ~37 million people who bought an iPhone (that figure includes iPod touch however). The power of consumer outcry and public outrage , however subtle , has made apple realize that users are demanding such a feature in the future. Apple is not immune to the forces of the market. If lack of a port corresponds to a dramatic slide in sales, than it more than likely will be brought back in the next revision. I'd venture to say that if just ten percent of the Apple's notebook market made a concerted effort and said that if the next Macbook Pro doesn't have bluray then we aren't buying, they would have no choice than to succumb to their whim or suffer the consequences of 10% lost revenue on notebook sales, 10% on software sales, 10% on market share, 10% on repeat businesses etc etc (all relative, not exactly 10% across the board.) So far we've seen that consumers are willing to purchase machines that cost over 2k and have displayport and one firewire port.

    Such is life.
     
  21. yoak macrumors 65816

    yoak

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    #21
    As a film/video proffesional I would love to see Bly-ray implemented in the laptops. At least in the pro. Hdmi would be nice, but not so important too me.
    To the posters that say "well, just don't buy apple"; that would be very costly as you also have to drop all your software and re-learn a new product. A product that's not even industry standard ie Premiere.
    In time and money this make for a huge investment, one can't just "switch"
     
  22. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    #22
    A well articulated argument. Its just sad that it would have to take that to make they put PRO features on a PRO computer....sigh. Wait, wtf did they even create firewire 1600 and 3200 if they have no intention of backing it?

    This is such a wired time in the computer world. We have hard drive manufacturers releasing external drives that have eSATA ports that few people will use. And we have Apple selling computers with a port selection from 2003.

    So basically, apple is trimming as much fat from the bone in order to maximize profit. Why put new tech in when you can sell old tech, and charge 2.5X the cost?
     
  23. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

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    #23
    I wouldn't worry too much. The market still has a need for a sustained high speed low latency interface . USB will always have market share, but thats because its not cost effective to use a fw chipset to sync my phone.
     
  24. waywardsage thread starter macrumors 6502

    waywardsage

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    #24
    I notice by your signature that you use G Tech hard drives. I also have the Q. i'm thinking of purchasing some other drives for some projects. Any suggestions? I like the Q. It's very versatile.

    Any suggestions for low cost archiving hard drives for HD footage?
     
  25. Theclamshell macrumors 68030

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    Mar 2, 2009
    #25
    Get both :p but seriously, if you can afford it you can get a cheap pc laptop and have a nice expensive mac and a cheap pc or in my case a cheap mac and an expensive pc

    Sorry if the wording on that is not the best :)
     

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