Schiller Explains Why Apple Added the Touch Bar on New MacBook Pro


In a recent interview with Backchannel, Apple’s SVP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller has explained why the company chose to include the Touch Bar on the new MacBook Pro, while not going for a full touch screen experience. He also addressed concerns regarding Apple’s USB-C only approach with the new MacBook Pro, which he referred to as “the right thing” for Apple and the industry to do.


When asked about the absence of a full touch screen experience, Schiller said “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”. He added that Apple tried to implement touch screens in the Mac family a number of times over the years, but 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. 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.”

“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?'”

Regarding USB-C, Schiller said that the inclusion of Thunderbolt 3 is the solution to high transfer rates to and from the computer.

“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.'”

“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.”

You can read the lengthy article in its entirety at this link.


  • Makes sense, but I’d still love a slightly thicker version with more RAM, more battery life and that SD card slot. (Not that I have a problem with the battery life, but it was stated that was why they didn’t include a 32GB RAM option… and I really don’t care much about how thin it is, I’m totally fine with the thickness of the previous MBP.)

    Carrying different cables for a few accessories and upgrading the cables that I use to connect things at home is something I could get used to, so I don’t mind the USB-C ports too much. I can see how they’d be much better to work with once the upgrade cost is out of the way. Although one legacy USB port would be nice to have for when a friend wants to give you something on a USB stick.

    Going back to using an external SD card reader, however is pretty annoying. I know it’s not a big deal for most people but for a lot of pro users it is a fairly notable inconvenience.

  • Aleks Oniszczak

    “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”

    Yeah, I think they said something like that at Blackberry.

  • huddyrocks

    hmmm, It’s not the latest technology as far as CPU/chipsets go. It omits all standard ports and opts for a virtually non supported port and sells us dongles. They got rid of the best innovation in a notebook anyone has had in years (magsafe) , and charge more than anyone for performance the same as last generations machines. I mean, whats not to love…..

  • I’m going to really miss MagSafe with a toddler around…fml