Apple SVP Phil Schiller addresses Touch Bar, other MacBook Pro concerns

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware
In an interview, Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller further elaborates on Apple's reasoning behind the Touch Bar on the new MacBook Pro, why Apple hasn't gone to a full touch screen, and the USB-C connector.




"Watch, iPhone, iPad, Macbook, iMac, they really are all computers. Each one is offering customers something unique and each one is made with a simple form that perhaps is eternal," said Schiller to Steven Levy from Backchannel, regarding the absence of a full touch screen experience. "People in the industry may question them  --  we don't, for some very simple reasons."

Schiller noted that Apple had tried to implement touch screens in the Mac family "a number of times over the years." Each time, the company deduced that it wasn't the right thing to do for the ecosystem.

"If we were to do Multi-Touch on the screen of the notebook, that wouldn't be enough -- then the desktop wouldn't work that way," explained Schiller. "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."
"I know our team made very smart choices and this is the best notebook that can be made with the greatest technology." -- Phil Schiller
The Touch Bar is an extension of the work Apple put into investigating a full touch screen experience for macOS. It is not, however, a migration of iOS to macOS.

"Its implementation is pure Mac," Schiller said regarding the Touch Bar. "The thought and vision from the very beginning was not at all, 'How do we put iOS in the Mac?' It was entirely, 'How to you use the technology to make a better Mac experience?'"

USB-C only, and the path forward

Schiller reinforced to Backchannel that USB-C connectors are "the right thing" for Apple and the industry, and the inclusion of Thunderbolt 3 is the solution to high transfer rates to and from the computer. The executive is not deaf to concerns, however, even if nothing is done about it.

"We care about the feedback but we know that the fundamental difference on where their opinions are coming is between those who had a chance to use it and those who haven't," said Schiller, basically saying the same thing as in a previous interview. "There are people who want us to innovate faster and when we do there's people who say, 'Whoa, whoa, you're going too fast.'"

Physical, versus virtual keys

Some critics of the Touch Bar included in the new MacBook Pro in recent days have called it gimmicky, and are concerned that it may pave the way for the removal of a physical keyboard all together on future Mac models.

"It's certainly not on the horizon right now. We do want to add those experiences that you are talking about -- talking to talk to Siri, voice dictation, suggestions," answered Schiller when posed with the question about the future of Apple input devices. "Although for us right now, there's no reason to make that trade off. Instead, we focused on not removing the keyboard but making a better keyboard."

"There's always something for a critic to beat up on anybody's notebook, because you have to make choices," Schiller added. "I know our team made very smart choices and this is the best notebook that can be made with the greatest technology."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 92
    hevaKmaIhevaKmaI Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    edited November 2016 anantksundaramLeBart1968applecoredbdkennedy1002perkedelnumenorean
  • Reply 2 of 92
    hevaKmaI said:
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    I am beginning to agree with this. Having now been a regular iPad Pro user for my work for almost a year, and having got used to going back and forth between a keyboard and touch screen on that device, I find myself instinctively reaching to touch the screen on my MBP more and more often!

    I find that having to get used to different input methods on different devices -- when they're essentially converging for my use case, and I am sure there many others for whom that is true -- is increasingly a bit jarring.

    Apple may have to rethink this one, its new Touch Bar notwithstanding.
    edited November 2016 dogmanbloggerblogapplecoredperkedellorin schultznumenorean
  • Reply 3 of 92
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,988member
    This Macbook pro is certainly awesome laptop. if you need touch than use Ipad Pro(and keyboard to make it look like surface). My son has Wondows touch screen laptop and he never uses touch. Says kind of cumbersome. People complain about missing ports but from older Macbook models, thunderbolt 2 and USB 2/3 ports replaced by more advanced USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 combined. Plenty provided on new macbook pro. Same USB-C port is used for charging so Megasafe port is not needed. Missing Ethernet port is hardly used in Wifi everywhere world. Missing SD memory card slot, yes issue for photographers but in the world of wireless on phones and pro cameras Wifi upload ability to MBP and cloud, who needs it ? 3.5mm headphone is still their but BT and wireless earpods, who needs it ?. Am I missing anything ?
    edited November 2016 LeBart1968jony0gilly017chiaration alwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 92
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,988member
    hevaKmaI said:
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    You think if Apple wants to do touch feature on macos than they can't do it ? LOL! Apple is the one who made touch UI so popular.
    edited November 2016 jony0gilly017kiltedgreenchiapatchythepirateration alwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 92
    Phil, you're doing damage control for a reason.
    applecoreddtb200dysamoriaentropysnumenoreanLeBart1968
  • Reply 6 of 92
    How do you justify such high prices? I was going to replace my 2012 MBA, but not that those prices!
    applecoreddtb200dysamoriaautomaticftp1propodentropys
  • Reply 7 of 92
    hevaKmaI said:
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    sorry, but no. that thing sucks because even the raised position is so low to the table -- you have to look down at it, rather than forward. as a non-drawer that sucks for normal use. not ergonomic at all. and can you mount it on a VESA arm? (i use my iMacs arm-mounted).


    edited November 2016 macxpressgilly017pscooter63pulseimagesration alwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 92
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,061member
    'Can you imagine reaching over? Well, a little, yes. How about if you remove the need to reach over?' That's what MS has done.
    numenorean
  • Reply 9 of 92
    hevaKmaI said:
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    sorry, but no. that thing sucks because even the raised position is so low to the table -- you have to look down at it, rather than forward. as a non-drawer that sucks for normal use. not ergonomic at all. and can you mount it on a VESA arm? (i use my iMacs arm-mounted).


    She is standing up. A chair would change things.

    I do think reaching out to touch a computer monitor would be hard on the back though.
    edited November 2016 pulseimagespatchythepiratebucksterration alnumenorean
  • Reply 10 of 92
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 1,945member
    I totally agree with Schiller that a touch screen Mac is not the way to go. 

    I can also imagine that the touch bar (and perhaps other future dynamic input devices on the same plane) will be a useful addition to the Mac UI. 

    I also now better appreciate some of the Pro-oriented choices made with the new MBPs: 

    1. The SSD is wicked, wicked fast and arguably storage is the biggest bottleneck many people face
    2. According to the Ars review, there is a good reason for going with AMD rather than Nvidia -- the ability to drive 2 external 5k displays (apparently no Nvidia mobile GPU can do that). 

    So... I think I'm realizing that my initial negativity regarding the new MBPs was misplaced. These are good pro laptops. 

    The real issue -- at least for me -- is the lack of a Mac Pro update. But as I consider the new MBPs more carefully, I'm more optimistic that maybe there will be a good Mac Pro update coming down the pike, because (contrary to my first impression) I think these new MBPs actually do take Pro needs into account to a great extent than I initially thought. 
    roundaboutnowpscooter63dtb200brucemcpulseimagespatchythepirateration alwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 92
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,687member
    That new Surface is a niche product.

    It seems to be made for one particular application only, and that is for artist type applications.

    I agree with Phil Schiller.

    I can't even imagine wanting to reach out and touch the huge screen that is currently in front of me. It's a totally ridiculous and retarded idea.

    Hopefully Apple will never go full retard.



    macpluspluspscooter63pulseimagespatchythepirateration alwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 92
    LeBart1968LeBart1968 Posts: 15unconfirmed, member
    wood1208 said:
    This Macbook pro is certainly awesome laptop. if you need touch than use Ipad Pro(and keyboard to make it look like surface). My son has Wondows touch screen laptop and he never uses touch. Says kind of cumbersome. People complain about missing ports but from older Macbook models, thunderbolt 2 and USB 2/3 ports replaced by more advanced USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 combined. Plenty provided on new macbook pro. Same USB-C port is used for charging so Megasafe port is not needed. Missing Ethernet port is hardly used in Wifi everywhere world. Missing SD memory card slot, yes issue for photographers but in the world of wireless on phones and pro cameras Wifi upload ability to MBP and cloud, who needs it ? 3.5mm headphone is still their but BT and wireless earpods, who needs it ?. Am I missing anything ?
    Professional photographers don't use the sd-card slot. Most of the time they have Compact Flash cards. So skip that one as well.
    nolamacguypscooter63ration al
  • Reply 13 of 92
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,726member
    wood1208 said:
    This Macbook pro is certainly awesome laptop. if you need touch than use Ipad Pro(and keyboard to make it look like surface). My son has Wondows touch screen laptop and he never uses touch. Says kind of cumbersome. People complain about missing ports but from older Macbook models, thunderbolt 2 and USB 2/3 ports replaced by more advanced USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 combined. Plenty provided on new macbook pro. Same USB-C port is used for charging so Megasafe port is not needed. Missing Ethernet port is hardly used in Wifi everywhere world. Missing SD memory card slot, yes issue for photographers but in the world of wireless on phones and pro cameras Wifi upload ability to MBP and cloud, who needs it ? 3.5mm headphone is still their but BT and wireless earpods, who needs it ?. Am I missing anything ?
    Professional photographers don't use the sd-card slot. Most of the time they have Compact Flash cards. So skip that one as well.
    I did not know that, but it seems that Apple does. 
    ration alLeBart1968
  • Reply 14 of 92
    LeBart1968LeBart1968 Posts: 15unconfirmed, member
    hevaKmaI said:
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    sorry, but no. that thing sucks because even the raised position is so low to the table -- you have to look down at it, rather than forward. as a non-drawer that sucks for normal use. not ergonomic at all. and can you mount it on a VESA arm? (i use my iMacs arm-mounted).


    It seems to me it's as high as an iMac screen. And it can be raised more. But more importantly, it can be lowered too. Perfect for drawing, no over the air reaching ... We have to wait another few years before Apple comes to his senses (like they eventually made bigger iPhone screens) Such a pity that Apple didn't design this. I'm not ready yet to switch over to Microsoft.
  • Reply 15 of 92
    I'd love to at least use the Apple Pencil with the Mac. It would be great to render without having to use Astropad, or buy an expensive Wacom tablet.
  • Reply 16 of 92
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,726member

    blastdoor said:
    I totally agree with Schiller that a touch screen Mac is not the way to go. 

    I can also imagine that the touch bar (and perhaps other future dynamic input devices on the same plane) will be a useful addition to the Mac UI. 

    I also now better appreciate some of the Pro-oriented choices made with the new MBPs: 

    1. The SSD is wicked, wicked fast and arguably storage is the biggest bottleneck many people face
    2. According to the Ars review, there is a good reason for going with AMD rather than Nvidia -- the ability to drive 2 external 5k displays (apparently no Nvidia mobile GPU can do that). 

    So... I think I'm realizing that my initial negativity regarding the new MBPs was misplaced. These are good pro laptops. 

    The real issue -- at least for me -- is the lack of a Mac Pro update. But as I consider the new MBPs more carefully, I'm more optimistic that maybe there will be a good Mac Pro update coming down the pike, because (contrary to my first impression) I think these new MBPs actually do take Pro needs into account to a great extent than I initially thought. 
    And to think, you could have avoided all that typing and teeth-gnashing if you'd just waited until someone actually got hold a machine and tested it. 

    What amazes me is the sheer number of people who failed to consider one simple thing:

    Apple has a chip that can outperform other mobile chips with half as many cores. They are masters of doing more with less. That doesn't mean that this laptop is any good, but it does mean that folk should wait to see it before throwing themselves off the balcony. 


    stevehpscooter63brucemcwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 92
    I wonder if these interviews were planned or are due to the reaction these machines have received?
    dtb200
  • Reply 18 of 92
    hevaKmaI said:
    "Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? That becomes absurd. You can't optimize for both."

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/devices/surface-studio/overview

    Seriously, go to a Microsoft store and try one. It's pretty damn awesome and works well as both a touch surface and iMac like computer. I have loved Apple products, but it seems they have just way too much hubris now. They think if they can't do it, it cannot be done.
    sorry, but no. that thing sucks because even the raised position is so low to the table -- you have to look down at it, rather than forward. as a non-drawer that sucks for normal use. not ergonomic at all. and can you mount it on a VESA arm? (i use my iMacs arm-mounted).


    It seems to me it's as high as an iMac screen. And it can be raised more. But more importantly, it can be lowered too. Perfect for drawing, no over the air reaching ... We have to wait another few years before Apple comes to his senses (like they eventually made bigger iPhone screens) Such a pity that Apple didn't design this. I'm not ready yet to switch over to Microsoft.
    If Apple does design this, I'll wager it won't be running macOS and have an Intel processor.  Think of it more like a 28" iPad Pro running a custom Apple ARM SoC & a version of iOS. When it comes to anything touch / Pencil related, iOS / ARM are Apple's future. 


    dtb200theunfetteredmindpropodLeBart1968watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 92
    I wonder if these interviews were planned or are due to the reaction these machines have received?
    This interview was done in conjunction with the review Steven Levy was doing for the MBP, so to me it feels like it was planned. This is something we have to get used to with Apple execs doing more interviews to try and control the narrative as new products are released. Personally, I'll take this compared to being dead silent.
    gilly017patchythepirate
  • Reply 20 of 92
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,726member
    bdkennedy said:
    Phil, you're doing damage control for a reason.
    Yup.  A lot more idiots to reach this time round. 
    stevehnolamacguymacxpresspscooter63brucemcchiapatchythepirateration alwatto_cobra
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