The 2018 Macbook Pro

Mashable got their hands on the 2018 Macbook Pro for this review. TLDR? A powerful machine, but there are ongoing design problems. Via Mashable:

Using the 2018 MacBook Pro has been a roller-coaster experience. Ultimately you can’t help but respect such a powerful machine, but Apple didn’t do itself any favors by sticking with the existing design. As such, the new Pro has an uphill climb in convincing buyers it’s a worthy upgrade.

And I really wanted to be convinced. For the past year and a half, I, like many Apple customers, have been waiting for a major refresh of its most recent MacBook Pro design, which first debuted about 20 months ago.

That refresh ended up having several issues. For starters, the Touch Bar — the horizontal touchscreen that replaces the function row of keys — is of questionable utility, and feels like an inadequate compromise that Apple created because of its refusal to make a touchscreen Mac.

Then there are the four USB-C ports, which are the machine’s only connectors (apart from the headphone jack). USB-C promised to take us to the promised land of simplification, but instead we’ve ended up in dongle hell since connecting to any legacy gear (like, I don’t know, the cables that come with every single iPhone?) requires an adapter of some kind.

And then there’s that keyboard. The butterfly-switch keyboard design, first seen in the 2015 MacBook, lets Apple make its already-thin laptops even thinner. But, reliability issues aside, to those who got used to the chiclet keys on previous designs, it doesn’t feel like an upgrade. And if you do end up having a maintenance problem, it’s a rage-emoji-inducing hassle to fix.

If there were just one of these issues, it would be pretty easy to dismiss. But all three? That was enough to give me pause, and I’ve been holding out, hoping Apple will do something to address them, and possibly even reverse course in some way.

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