Apple has just refreshed its MacBook Pro line, adding a thin touch screen on top of some model’s keyboards.
You can now slide and touch the bar to edit photos, navigate the web and authorize online purchases.
Cupertino, Calif., Apple headquarters, three new MacBook Pro models are introduced, including high-end versions of its 13-inch and 15-inch systems now sold with the Touch Bar screen. The company also unveiled a new lower-cost 13-inch MacBook Pro, without the Touch Bar, as a replacement device for MacBook Air users.
Apple new touch-screen models include a Touch ID fingerprint reader and will allow users to authorize online payments and log into applications with the touch of a finger, forgoing passwords in most cases.
The touch bar functionality changes depending on the program that is currently running.
It also offers quick typing suggestions while using a word processor, emojis in a texting program, or volume and play buttons in a music program.
According to Apple, the new MacBook Pro had a 67 percent brighter screen, a faster processor, and is lighter – 4 pounds for the 15-inch notebook.
The new 13-inch MacBook Pro is actually thinner and weighs the same as Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Air.
Pricing has climbed from the current base of $1,300:
The 13-inch MacPro Pro without the touch bar costs $1,500.
The new feature brings that price up to $1,800.
The 15-inch screen starts at $2,000.
“The price points for the new MacBook Pro models sit in a rarified stratum of the PC market,” J.P. Gownder, a technology analyst at Forrester, said Thursday. Laptops and tablets designed by Microsoft, he added, “have eaten away at Apple’s lead among both high end buyers and creators, so Apple had to fight back…. but Apple’s deep brand loyalty will make the products successful among the target audience anyway.”
The laptops could be ordered online starting Thursday.