The new MacBook Pro has garnered a lot of criticism by the creative community. I’ve seen an influx of posts bashing it for a number of reasons. The incredible volume of negative posts may be due to an unprecedented number of creatives venting their frustration.
A part of me is curious to know if these posts are real. We just came from an election season filled with fake news written by kids in Macedonia. So it is possible that rival companies could be stirring up dissent in the Apple community for their competitive advantage. Despite this suspicion, I did feel slightly disappointed when I watched the unveiling.
When Apple removed the headphone jack from the iPhone 7—I defended it while everyone else was bashing it. Because personally, I could see a slither of their forward thinking vision. I haven’t used the headphone jack on my iPhone in at least a year. With Bluetooth connectivity in my car and in my home, I’ve had little reason to use the headphone jack.
I’ve also stopped using earbuds because I was concerned they would hurt my ears in the long term. I never did like the redesigned EarPods. I stopped using them even before I learned that having the volume too high could damage your hearing. Now if I hadn’t learned that little fact and I was frequently in a place where playing my music on speakers wasn’t practical then I would better appreciate the frustration of not being able to plug in your old headphones.
So in all, I am not too disappointed with the loss of the headphone jack although I do not see any added benefit by removing it. The price hasn’t decreased.
It was at this point that I realized Apple’s MO: making their products thinner and lighter by removing antiquated features, was making them richer. They are incredibly efficient at doing this and that is why they are the most profitable company on earth. Given that in the political sphere the creatives who tend to be progressives are fighting economic inequality— Apple’s soaring profits are a bit out of touch.
Many young creatives have college debt, buy every new Apple product that comes out and have little to show for it in terms of return on investment. At some point, you begin to ask yourself why spend thousands of dollars on cameras, video editing software, web builders, graphic design tools, external hard drive’s and cloud storage when I’m in debt?
This new MacBook directed me to that discussion with myself. If I have to buy new hard drives for USB-C, is it worth it? I’m not making gobs of money like the tech industry is, maybe creatives are getting the short end of the stick? Low returns and high overhead… not ideal.
Maybe there are two groups of creatives: college enthusiasts who invest more in tech than they can reasonably expect an ROI from and seasoned professionals who demand more out of their equipment because they’re shooting with RED 6K camcorders. Apple is caught up in the middle trying to serve these two groups: the aspiring professionals and the actual professionals. Inevitably, there will be a portion of aspiring professionals who find themselves stuck in the hobbyist zone, unable to turn over a profit from their endeavors. Apple may be leaning toward the more profitable group.