Apple’s latest line of MacBook Pros appear to have been received well by the market, although the most interesting models with Touch Bar are yet to ship to customers. Digitimes reports that Apple is upping component orders for the new MacBook Pros, expected to continue at least until the end of 2016. Apple is apparently “optimistic” about fourth quarter sales.
The new 13-inch MacBook Pro and 15-inch MacBook Pro feature high-speed Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports, faster SSDs, Skylake processors, better GPU options, larger trackpad and an OLED display ‘Touch Bar’ touchscreen panel to replace the physical row of function keys.
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Apple is also selling a cheaper new 13-inch MacBook Pro that does not include the Touch Bar but includes the other upgrades, which Apple seems to be positioning as a higher-tier model of the MacBook Air. All new Pros are thinner and lighter with new chassis designs.
The Digitimes report backs up Phil Schiller’s public statement that early orders for the new MacBook Pro have bested all previous pro Apple notebook launches in online sales.
The supply chain report says Apple originally intended to launch the new laptops in the previous quarter but had to delay the release due to low production yields of hinges, batteries and keyboards. Now that the product has been unveiled, Apple is ramping orders significantly which is a strong indication of positive customer reception.
The new MacBook Pro design has been widely criticised in the community because of three main reasons: higher prices, the lack of traditional USB-A ports and the inability to upgrade the internal RAM above 16 GB. Although the negativity does not seem to be impacting sales, the customer response provoked Apple to lower USB-C adaptor/dongle prices. Apple SVP Marketing Phil Schiller also confronted some of the criticisms in a newspaper interview.
The (non Touch Bar) 13 inch MacBook Pro has been available for just over a week but the Touch Bar models have not arrived in customer’s hands. Delivery estimates for the hotly-anticipated Touch Bar MacBook Pros indicate a launch around November 15th. On the Apple Online Store, Touch Bar MacBook Pros are backordered by more than a month. Digitimes expects to see Mac laptop revenue growth through the end of the year and 2017.