Touch screen devices are becoming very prominent today, from smartphones, tablets, and even desktop computers like the Surface Studio. While Microsoft made a touch-enabled user interface with Windows 8, which was improved when Windows 10 came out, its rival, Apple, stuck with its non-touch experience with the Mac, even after introducing the Touch Bar on its new MacBook.
In a recent interview with Backchannel, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller explained that creating a touch experience for the MacBook 'wouldn't be enough,' saying that doing so could create a divide between the MacBook and iMac.
In line with the topic, he called touch on the desktop a 'disaster.' “Can you imagine a 27-inch iMac where you have to reach over the air to try to touch and do things? he continued, "That becomes absurd.” He emphasized that the iMac's main source of interaction relies on the keyboard, and mouse or trackpad. “You can’t optimize for both,” he says. “It’s the lowest common denominator thinking.”
Schiller admitted that Apple was indeed internally testing out touch capability, but has concluded that it wasn't the right thing to do. "Our instincts were that it didn't, but, what the heck, we could be wrong—so our teams worked on that for a number of times over the years,” says Schiller. "Our instincts were correct.”
Talking about the newly unveiled Touch Bar on the MacBook Pro, he said:
“Its implementation is pure Mac. The thought and vision from the very beginning was not at all, ‘How do we put iOS in the Mac?’ It was entirely, ‘How to you use the [iOS] technology to make a better Mac experience?’”
Furthermore, Schiller is optimistic regarding its decision to primarily use USB-C ports. “We’re absolutely more sure than ever that we’ve done the right thing,” he said. Regarding dongles, he said that most people won't need the said accessories. However, those who do can pick up dongles, which recently experienced price cuts.
Moreover, Schiller defended Apple regarding claims that it has lost its innovative edge. He said:
“We work hard on these things, and they are the best. We care about the feedback but we know that the fundamental difference on where their opinions are coming is between those who had a chance to use it and those who haven’t. There are people who want us to innovate faster and when we do there’s people who say, ‘Whoa, whoa, you’re going too fast.’ That’s just a balance in the world.”
He concludes that their team has made smart choices, and claims that the MacBook Pro is the best notebook that can be made with the greatest technology. With his recent statement that the new device is the 'fastest selling MacBook Pro ever,' how Apple will innovate further in a growing touch-centric tech world in the future will remain to be seen.