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This ridiculous concept shows why Apple never made a touchscreen MacBook

Published Nov 23rd, 2016 3:17PM EST
MacBook vs iPad
Image: YouTube

For as long as touchscreens have been around, people have been clamoring for a MacBook that they can put their sticky paws all over. Apple’s never given the idea that much thought, and there’s never been much indication that the iPad and MacBook will merge.

That hasn’t stopped fanboys the world over dreaming of some kind of iMacPad running maciOS. Someone’s even gone to the lengths of putting together a concept video, which does an excellent job of demonstrating why Apple should kill the idea with fire.

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This particular combo seems to essentially show an iPad Pro running macOS, but with a built-in metal keyboard that folds out. There’s no visible trackpad, no ports, and a screen that’s just going to be scratched to hell. There’s a lot to hate here, so in the interests of simplicity, let’s list all the worst problems with this idea.

  1. I have problems clicking some of the smaller menu bars and icons in macOS using the excellent MacBook trackpads. This laplet has no trackpad, so I guess you’re meant to navigate everywhere by touch. That will be horribly imprecise, but also very tiring. The keyboard + touchscreen combo is one of the worst possible input setups, as you have to keep moving hands from keyboard to touchscreen, which is a lot slower than keyboard + mouse. There’s a reason that Microsoft’s successful Surface lineup all include a small touchpad.
  2. The base doesn’t seem to have any ports or connectors besides one USB-C, which really kills the point of having a base. The iPad Pro is plenty powerful enough on its own; the point of having a metal base, rather than a fabric keyboard cover, is to add functionality. All I’m seeing here is extra weight.
  3. What’s the point in this, vs the Retina MacBook? This looks heavier, way easier to scratch, harder to use and more annoying to type on.

Microsoft’s Surface Pro is a viable tablet/laptop hybrid because Microsoft has slowly and painfully built Windows out to be touch-friendly. MacOS is not, and Apple already makes a pro-level iPad and an absurdly thin laptop. This concept would be worse than both.

Jony Ive, if you’re done designing Christmas trees and taking design input off the internet: don’t do this.