A plea for Apple to update the MacBook Pro

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I really would like to buy a 17″ Apple MacBook Pro but if I’m going to spend all that cash then I need to know that it’s the right thing to do. I’ve been waiting for OS X Leopard (not that I can see much advantage in upgrading to Leopard but it seemed daft to buy a new computer with Tiger on it) and now I hear rumours that there will be a new MacBook Pro announced in the New Year. So, if anyone from Apple is reading this, please, please, please, consider the following for the next update:

Apple MacBook Pro (17

  • Why is there all that wasted space to the side of the keyboard (which is the same size on both the 15″ and 17″ models)? With a 17″ unit, surely you can fit a larger (even full-size) keyboard on there instead of larger speaker covers?
  • Why is the wrist rest so huge, with the keyboard set so far back? (it’s fine on the 15″ model but with the larger chassis of the 17″ I’m really not sure that it will be comfortable…)
  • Please, can I have a two button trackpad?
  • Oh yes, and if you really want to justify all the extra cash (after all, it’s really not an inexpensive purchase), how about a docking station too?

The MacBook Pro has plenty of features that make it better for me than a standard MacBook but if I have to keep on plugging in an external mouse and keyboard, then that really defeats the object of buying a desktop replacement notebook PC.

3 thoughts on “A plea for Apple to update the MacBook Pro

  1. Hi Mark.
    I’ve had 4 17″ Apple laptops (2 Powerbooks, the original MacBook Pro and the current 2.4Ghz MacBook Pro).
    Here are a few answers :

    – I am very happy about the keyboard and its layout (I am not an accountant and could not care less about a numeric keypad). Also, the keyboard is well centered, which is a very good thing. And the speakers are unbelievably good (They were good but have been significantly enhanced with the latest 17″ MBPs).

    – The wrist rest is very comfortable, at east for me.

    – Why woud you need 2 physical buttons ? Just put 2 fingers on the trackpad and click : that makes a right-click. This has to be enabled in System preferences. You can also scroll with 2 fingers on the trackpad, and right-click when tappig with 2 fingers if you which so. This works extremely well.

    – I can understand your need for a docking station. It would no be an easy design, with ports on the right and left side of the MacBook Pro.

    As for new models of MacBook Pro, there will be some one day. But that ‘s life. And the current model is really good.

    Hope this helps.

  2. Victor and Jérôme
    Thank you both for pointing out the two-finger click. I didn’t know about that feature and it sounds like it will solve the problem (I thought I was going to be constantly Ctrl-clicking). Even so, a two-button trackpad seems to work for every other notebook PC manufacturer (IBM even give me both a trackpad and a trackpoint on my ThinkPad, although I believe trackpoint use is generally discouraged from a health and safety perspective) and I can’t help but think this is all down to Steve Jobs’ apparent fixation with single-button mice – something that I’ve already experienced with my purchase of the beautiful, comfortable, yet highly problematic “mighty” mouse.

    As for the (lack of) docking station, my other notebook PCs have ports on all sides but the manufacturers put a connector on the bottom of the computer for use with a docking station. I guess this is just another case where Apple dares to be different and whilst I may not appreciate all of those differences, the overall design of the Apple hardware is why I want to buy it so much – I guess nothing is 100% perfect, even if it is designed by Jonathan Ive.

    All in all, the MacBook Pro seems to be a very well-built notebook PC and I’m pleased to hear Jérôme comment that he has no issues with the location of the keyboard or the size of the wrist rest.

    I’ll probably wait until MacWorld just in case there’s a new model (it’s only a couple of months to wait) and even though it will probably just be a processor upgrade, it gives me a couple more months to save up the cash.

    Thanks for the advice guys :-)


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