Apple’s new Macs will have an OLED touch bar, a MacOS update suggests

macos sierra missing function keys macbook oled leak 32
Images uncovered in the latest MacOS Sierra update appear to confirm the long-running, and very likely, rumor that the new MacBook Pro will say goodbye to the function keys in favor of a multifunctional OLED touch bar. That’s right, after months of speculation, rumors, and manufacturer leaks it’s finally, almost, official. The latest information comes from a pretty reliable source, Apple itself.

According to MacRumors, Apple spoiled its own big reveal by including some images buried in the latest MacOS Sierra update, the images clearly show a MacBook Pro with an OLED touch bar while a user engages Touch ID to authorize a purchase in the Apple store.

The OLED touch bar is located just where we all expected it to be, right where the function keys used to be, and it appears to have a Touch ID pad on the right – and maybe left – side of the touch screen.

The images appear to be part of an internal tutorial for the upcoming MacBook Pro, which will walk users through the Touch ID setup process for the OLED touch bar.

As if photos of the new MacBook Pro weren’t evidence enough, the MacOS Sierra update 10.12.1 contains a new set of assets for the on-screen keyboard as well, which no longer contains a row of function keys. It might not seem like much, but it suggests two things. One, that those keys are no longer on the keyboard, and two, their functionality will be handled elsewhere – like the OLED touch bar.


The new on-screen keyboard assets still reflects the overall design of the typical Apple keyboard, but they appear to be missing the entire row previously occupied by the function keys — including the escape, power and eject keys. These latest images provide just another piece of the OLED touch bar puzzle, alongside the hardware leaks and conspicuous trademark filings uncovered earlier this year, which hinted strongly that the new MacBook Pro will feature some brand-new hardware.

Now, we finally know what the OLED touch bar will look like, and that it supports Touch ID. We’re still in the dark about its other capabilities though, and we’re still not sure how it will interact with other apps, but we’ll only have to wait till Thursday to find out – assuming Apple didn’t bury any more spoilers in the latest Sierra update.

Apple is expected to unveil a new slate of MacBooks, including a major revision to the MacBook Pro, at an event later this week.

Aside from the MacBook Pro, it’s likely we’ll also see a refreshed 13-inch MacBook Air at the event on Thursday, but it’s doubtful we’ll see any new desktop Macs unveiled. It’s also unlikely that Apple’s recent talks to acquire E Ink keyboard technology from Australian startup Sonder will bear any fruit in this latest round of MacBook revisions.

Product Review

How does the sleek MateBook X Pro hold up to the modern day competition?

Huawei impressed us with the MateBook X, a solid competitor to the 12-inch MacBook that beat Apple at its own game. Now, Huawei is taking a shot at premium 14-inchers with the MateBook X Pro, but it’s not without oddities – like a…

Apple MacBook Air vs. Microsoft Surface Pro 6

The MacBook Air was updated with more contemporary components and a more modern design, but is that enough to compete with standouts like Microsoft's Surface Pro 6 detachable tablet?

The best iPhone deals for December 2018

Apple devices can get expensive, but if you just can't live without iOS, don't despair: We've curated an up-to-date list of all of the absolute best iPhone deals available for December 2018.

Why limit yourself to one OS? Try one of these great virtual machine apps

Buying a new computer just because you want to utilize another operating system isn't necessary. Just use the best virtual machine applications to emulate one OS inside another, no matter what your platform or budget is.

Go hands-free in Windows 10 with speech-to-text support

Looking for the dictation, speech-to-text, and voice control options in Windows 10? Here's how to set up Speech Recognition in Windows 10 and use it to go hands-free in a variety of different tasks and applications within Windows.

Windows Update not working after October 2018 patch? Here’s how to fix it

Windows update not working? It's a more common problem than you might think. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to troubleshoot it and in this guide we'll break them down for you step by step.

Microsoft could split up search and Cortana in the next Windows 10 release

In the latest Insider preview build, Microsoft is exploring ways to split up Cortana and search on Windows 10. If Microsoft moves ahead with this change, we could see separate search and Cortana options in the Spring 2019 Update.

Mining cryptocurrency for Razer Silver isn’t worth your computing power

Gaming peripheral maker Razer launched a cryptocurrency mining scheme called SoftMiner. You use its software to mine and in return, you get Razer Silver which you can use to buy Razer gear.

Microsoft’s latest patent paves the way for Andromeda dual-screen mobile device

The latest patent discovery from Microsoft showcases a new hinge design for quickly opening a dual-screen mobile device with a single hand. Could this be additional proof surrounding the rumors of the company's Project Andromeda device?

Heal your wrist aches and pains with one of these top ergonomic mice

If you have a growing ache in your wrist, it might be worth considering changing up your mouse for something ergonomic. But which is the best ergonomic mouse for you? One of these could be the ticket to the right purchase for you.

Nvidia’s Jetson AGX Xavier module is designed to give robots better brains

Nvidia's pricey Jetson AGX Xavier might help drive the next generation of smart robots. Nvidia hopes that developers will use its new Xavier module to power AI-driven machines like delivery drones and robots used in manufacturing.

These Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts will update your OG Windows skills

Windows 10 has many new features, and they come flanked with useful new keyboard shortcuts. Check out some of the new Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts to improve your user experience and save more time!

Leaked AMD Ryzen 3000 mobile benchmarks look fit for thin, low-power laptops

AMD is poised to give Intel a run for its money in the ultra-low-power processor space for laptops. Leaked benchmarks for the Ryzen 3000 APU series show the AMD processor besting Intel's Core i7 Y series in multicore performance.

Apple is spending $1 billion to hire up to 15,000 new employees in Austin

Apple has announced a series of expansions across the U.S. -- including a massive expansion to the company's Austin campus that will see it spending $1 billion to accommodate for up to 15,000 new employees.