Skip to main content

New reports confirm the next MacBook Pro to drop the controversial Touch Bar

According to multiple reports, Apple might ditch its famous Touch Bar in its upcoming 2021 MacBook Pro.

Many sources claim that Apple might release its next-generation MacBook Pro in the summer of 2021. Out of the multiple changes that the device is going to bring, one of them includes the absence of a Touch Bar.

Touch Bar showing digital function keys on the MacBook Pro.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

The DSCC (Display Supply Chain Consultants) analysis report said the following about the future of the controversial feature: “Touch Bars continue to be the No. 3 application with an 18% unit share and 1.2% revenue share in Q1’21. We expect Touch Bars to be exceeded by tablets when Apple starts the adoption of the 10.9-inch AMOLED iPad. Further, our sources suggest that Apple may cancel the Touch Bar in the future.”

Sources such as Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg, too, attested the claim. Apparently, the Touch Bar will be completely removed and replaced by a row of physical function keys. The 13-inch M1 MacBook Pro that was released last year in the fall did leverage the Touch Bar. The company introduced the feature in 2016. However, it wasn’t ever received well. People liked the feel of having physical keys to press. They also found it much more convenient to press on functions without having to look down. It has been five years since the feature was unveiled, and it appears Apple has finally listened to the complaints.

According to DSSC, the Touch Bar is the third largest use of OLED displays at the moment. Rumors also suggest that the company might switch to OLED displays for iPads in the future.

The new MacBook Pro will also host the upgraded silicon processor and a retouched design. The new design will feature square sides in the top and bottom halves of the device along with the flat edge design trend that we saw in the 2018 iPad Pro and in the iPhone 12 series. Apple is also expected to add more IO ports on the side and bring back MagSafe charging. Kuo reports that a MagSafe power connector is returning, but does not mention if this means the ability to charge on the left or right will be lost.

Apple will hopefully be satisfying the demands of all of those who miss the 2015 MacBook Pro with the return of physical function keys.

Editors' Recommendations

Dua Rashid
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Dua is a media studies graduate student at The New School. She has been hooked on technology since she was a kid and used to…
The new iPad Pro would be perfect, if only it were a Mac
A person gaming on the M4 iPad Pro and playing Diablo Immortal.

It’s no secret that I’ve been cheering on Apple’s gaming advances over the last year or so. Long-suffering Mac gamers have gone from being the forgotten also-rans of Apple’s ecosystem to feeling on top of the world, all in a very short period of time. But there’s one vital piece missing from the puzzle, and Apple’s new M4 iPad Pros have made it incredibly obvious.

I’ll admit, Mac gamers have been treated well in recent times. Not only have we had phenomenal hardware advancements in the form of the M3 Max chip -- which is a genuine gaming chip so cool and quiet that you’d be fooled into thinking it’s not -- but there’s also been a slate of top-tier games arriving on Apple’s platform, including my beloved Baldur’s Gate 3. It’s a good time to be a Mac gamer.

Read more
The XPS 16 is fighting an uphill battle against the MacBook Pro
Dell XPS 16 sitting on desktop with flowers.

It took a few years, but Dell finally updated the design of its two largest XPS laptops. The XPS 15 gave way to the XPS 14, while the XPS 17 was replaced by the XPS 16. The latter gained the ultramodern look of the XPS 13 Plus, complete with a glass palm rest, a hidden haptic touchpad, and a row of LED function keys.

It's a significant update but places the XPS 16 in direct competition with the Apple MacBook Pro 16. That's an excellent matchup with proven performance and battery life and an elegant design that's solid, if a lot more conservative.
Specs and configurations

Read more
These 6 tweaks take MacBooks from great to nearly perfect
The MacBook Air on a white table.

I love getting a new MacBook. The slow-opening box, the fresh install of macOS, even the enchanting new Mac smell (which people have been rhapsodizing about for decades) -- it’s all part of the experience.

But you know what? MacBooks don't arrive perfect out of the box. There are a few things that I always have to adjust, regardless of how powerful the laptop is. From changing the default apps to unlocking a few hidden extras, here are the first six things to do with your new MacBook before putting it to work.
Unlock some trackpad tricks

Read more