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Reports say that tech powerhouse Apple could soon release touchscreen versions of its Mac laptop lineup in 2 years.
Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) is mulling releasing a touchscreen version of its Mac laptop line in the near future. According to reports, the tech giant could release a touchscreen-enabled MacBook Pro laptop as early as 2025. This potential move marks a significant U-turn for Apple, which, on numerous occasions, previously described touchscreen laptops as ergonomically inferior.
Former Apple CEO, the late Steve Jobs, once argued about the practicality of touchscreen laptops. According to Jobs, reaching up to touch an upright screen “doesn’t work.” As Jobs put it back in 2010:
“Touch surfaces don’t want to be vertical. After an extended period of time, your arm wants to fall off.”
The California-based multinational tech company also previously worried that touchscreen Macs could encroach on iPad sales.
Although Apple might disrupt its production trend by releasing a laptop with touchscreen functionality, it does not need a sales boost. Sales in the tech giant’s Mac business are up 40% since the pandemic-riddled year of 2020. Furthermore, Apple’s decision to replace Intel processors with its own silicon in most of its computers contributed immensely to increased sales. The change improved Mac’s battery life and reduced overheating, helping the computer brand generate $40.1 billion in revenue during Apple’s fiscal 2022. The sales surge also represented a 14% increase from 2021.
What We Know So Far on Potential Apple Touchscreen Laptop
The proposed Apple touchscreen laptop may sport an OLED screen instead of the standard Mini LED displays. In addition, the model’s first design would also include the standard trackpad and keyboard.
As teams inside Apple continue to work on the touchscreen Mac project, observers also ponder the implied functionality changes. For example, a touchscreen-enabled Mac would require notable software alterations to accept finger taps and pokes. These changes could also demand larger buttons instead of the traditional mouse clicks. For instance, Apple’s iPhones and iPads use an operating system specifically designed for touchscreens. Conversely, the company’s macOS software is currently only controllable with a mouse and keyboard.
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman stresses that there are no final plans regarding the launch of a touchscreen Mac. Gurman also pointed out that Apple could always change its plans, as evidenced by previously scrapped projects. The company once made prototype Macs with touchscreens that never materialized in its product lineup.
Nonetheless, Gurman opines that the rumored Apple touchscreen Mac would retain the same form factor as current models. According to him, the only difference in functionality would be the ability to gesture and tap on the screen.
Apple to Start Manufacturing In-House Screens in 2024, Decreasing Supply Dependency on Samsung
In other related news, Apple recently announced plans to start using its own custom mobile display by 2024. This development marks a shift away from an over-reliance on technology partners such as Samsung and LG.
Apple’s stock rose 2.1% to $133.49 on Wednesday and is up 2.7% this year.