With the new MacBook now on sale in the UK, we decided to take a closer look at Apple’s latest offering and we’ve found five reasons as to why it deserves your money. From the on board technology to the design of the MacBook, you can tell that you’re looking at the future of notebooks. Why? Read on and find out.
Five reasons to buy a MacBook: Force Touch
A completely redesigned touchpad with Force Touch technology is one of the best reasons to buy the new MacBook. The trackpad already had various gestures, thanks to the multi-touch technology, but Apple has taken it one further with the new trackpad. How? By adding pressure sensitivity and haptic feedback, thanks to a built-in Taptic Engine.
You’ll still feel a click when you press down on the new trackpad, but there’s no real clicking involved. The click that you feel isn’t from the depress of the trackpad but is the direct result of Apple’s new Taptic Engine, which responds to touch and simulates a small click effect using electromagnets.
Apple has big plans for the Force Touch technology, especially with regards to its pressure sensitivity technology. You can “deep click” and perform tasks like change the fast-forward speed of a QuickTime movie, or get the definition of a word. Apple gives an insight into the future on its Force Touch developer page: “Drawing and other creative apps can take advantage of the pressure-sensing capabilities of the trackpad to make lines thicker or give a brush a changing style”.
The best part is that you can click anywhere on the trackpad, not just at the bottom like we’re used to. Macworld’s Andrew Harrison recently had reviewed the new MacBook Pro, which also includes Force Touch technology. When talking about Force Touch, Andrew says “It will take some concerted retraining of muscle memory, but one of the great advantages of the Force Trackpad is the ability to make a simple 'click' anywhere across the surface of the trackpad, and not simply along the closest edge as we have been trained to do since using hinged mechanical trackpads.”
See also: How does Force Touch work?
Five reasons to buy a MacBook: Redesigned keyboard
The new Force Touch trackpad isn’t the only thing that makes the MacBook worth purchasing. To help towards making the MacBook as thin as possible, Apple decided to redesign the whole keyboard, from the individual keys to the mechanism underneath. The result? A 40% thinner keyboard that’s still full size.
The new keyboard uses a new type of mechanism. Most keyboards use a scissor mechanism for each key, but the issue is accuracy and the wobble when you hit each key. The new butterfly mechanism that Apple has introduced brings improved precision and accuracy to the keyboard. That’s not all though, as Apple has made the each individual key larger, but has decreased the size between each key, which is also said to improve overall accuracy.
More specifically, the escape key has been elongated and the function keys are also narrower. The new keyboard also boasts individually lit keys, with a single LED light underneath each key.
The combination of redesigned keys and a redesigned mechanism leaves you with an experience that feels almost like a touchscreen. Why? Simply because the keys hardly move when you press them.
Five reasons to buy a MacBook: Thinnest notebook Apple has ever made
The latest MacBook is also the thinnest MacBook ever, measuring in at just 13.1mm thick, making it 24% thinner than the 11in MacBook Air. It’s also lightweight, weighing only 907g. It’s not necessarily the thinnest laptop in the world though, as the Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro measures in at 12.7mm thick.
It’s not just the overall thickness that Apple has cut down on, as the bezels around the edge of the display have been reduced too.
The question is how has Apple managed to make the MacBook so thin? Various components had to be completely redesigned to fit into its shell, including a new terraced battery and an all-new USB-C port (we’ll come to that, don’t worry). It means that Apple has had to wave goodbye to the iconic glowing Apple logo, opting instead for the same logo design as the iPad.
Five reasons to buy a MacBook: USB-C
One of the biggest talking points when Apple announced the new MacBook was the inclusion of the new standard of USB, USB-C. What’s so great about USB-C? One single port can handle not only data transfer but power input and video output. It means that you’re able to do everything you’d normally do on a laptop, but with one single port (if you’ve got a USB-C adapter for all your non USB-C devices).
It’s tiny too, measuring just 8.4x2.6mm which means that it’s small enough to be used by the smallest peripheral devices. Its also gone down the simplistic route of the lightning cable and allows for reversible plug orientation – say goodbye to the day of struggling to plug a USB cable into your computer.
As USB-C supports power input, you could theoretically use a USB power bank to charge your MacBook on the go. While this is a good feature, if you plug in your battery pack while using your MacBook, you’ll drain the power quicker than the rate it can charge the MacBook. If, however, you carry your MacBook around with you all day in a rucksack, you can plug in a battery pack when it’s not in use as it’ll charge your MacBook when its sleeping/off.
Five reasons to buy a MacBook: First fanless Apple laptop
Apple decided to include the Intel Core M processor, which launched late last year and is meant to power lightweight notebooks and tablets. It only consumes 4.5w of power (the MacBook requires 5w, possibly for the retina display) compared to typical notebook processors that sometimes require upwards of 10w to run.
Less power also means less heat generated, allowing Core M machines and particularly the MacBook to run fanless – as long as they have ventilation channels. As it is fanless, it also means that the MacBook is virtually silent so you can say goodbye to listening to your fans working frantically on your laptop when it overheats.
See also: New 12-inch Retina MacBook review