Forget the new MacBook Pro, Apple has something better

Forget the new MacBook Pro, Apple has something better

Forget the new MacBook Pro, Apple has something better

As Apple puts the new 13-inch MacBook Pro up for sale, it hopes its relatively low price compared to the larger models and the allure of the MacBook Pro name will attract customers. But those customers should take a moment to review the rest of the Mac portfolio and think carefully about their needs.

This entry-level consumer MacBook Pro offers many benefits to Apple, but for consumers, those same points weaken the sales pitch.

The first is the design. Apple has raved about the new design language introduced with the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models. As part of this change, Apple brought back MagSafe charging, an increased number of useful I/O ports, new display technology, fast charging, and more. Many of these new features were carried over to the new MacBook Air that also launched at WWDC.

The M2-powered MacBook Pro has none of these new features. It keeps the design introduced in 2016, the screen has not been updated and the ports remain limited. This is great for Apple’s supply chain management, but a new laptop should also be new, right?

Apple can lean on the capabilities of the M2 chipset, but this is the same chipset as the new MacBook Air. The MacBook Pro does have a small fan to aid in cooling, allowing the M2 to run hotter and deliver more performance than the fanless MacBook Air. It doesn’t matter which laptop the M2 is in and which cooling method is used, the M1 Pro and M1 Max in the larger Pro laptops outperform both laptops. I have no doubt that there is a very small subset of customers that require just a little more power than the MacBook Air provides, in which case it would be the MacBook Pro, but if you’re looking for power then you should look at the MacBook Pro laptops are focused on power.

Having an entry-level M2 MacBook Pro gives Apple a ‘cheap’ MacBook Pro in its portfolio and gives the impression that there is an affordable MacBook Pro. It fills a price point in the lineup and allows for a smooth progression in the laptop range.

But this laptop is a false economy for consumers. Those looking for an all-round machine have a better option in the M2 MacBook Air. Those looking for a cheaper macOS laptop should instead look to the original M1 MacBook Air that Apple kept in its books to have a modern $999 laptop. Those looking for more power will have no problem looking higher in the range.

This MacBook Pro answers many of Apple’s promotion, marketing, and device management challenges. It doesn’t meet the needs of Apple customers looking for a laptop that suits them. Those questions are answered elsewhere in Apple’s MacBook lineup. Instead, consumers should look there.

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