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New MacBook Pro Dumps Function Keys For Smartphone Features

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 by | Filed Under: Hardware & Peripherals, Mac OS

Apple fans have been waiting a long time for a big update to the MacBook line. Apple has finally made its move with the new MacBook Pro models. As expected, the devices are light and thin. The 13″ model weighs just 3 lbs and is only 14.9 mm thick. The 15″ model weighs in at 4lbs and only 15.5 mm thick.


The most noticeable change to the devices is that the function keys are gone from the keyboard. They’ve been replaced by the Touch Bar. The content of the Touch Bar will chance automatically based on what programs you’re using.


You can use the Touch Bar for system controls like volume or brightness. It will also offer options like emoji and predictive text when you’re typing, giving the MacBook the kind of features you’d expect from a smartphone keyboard.


Speaking of your smartphone, you’ll be able to answer your iPhone or make a FaceTime call from the keyboard without the need to move your cursor.


These new devices also feature Touch ID, giving you the option to secure your device with a biometric lock and use features like Apple Pay. It’s another way of bringing the services Apple offers on mobile devices to a laptop.


You will still be able to see the familiar function keys by holding down the FN key on the keyboard.  And if you really love those Function keys, there’s a slightly lower-priced model available without the Touch Bar or Touch ID.


The display for the new MacBook Pro offers P3 color, which Apple says gives your 25% more colors than standard RGB. There’s also a larger Force Touch trackpad that gives your hands more room to use gestures.


The Touch Bar MacBook Pros start at $1800 for the 13 inch model and range up to  $2800 for the 15″ model.

Mac users: what do you think about the Touch Bar?  Is it something you’re looking forward to using or just another feature you didn’t ask for?  Click to let us know in the comments.

~ Cynthia

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