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New MacBook Pro laptops: 5 things to know

Apple’s new laptops are some of the most powerful we have ever seen.

New MacBook Pro laptops: 5 things to know
Marc Chacksfield
18 October 2021

Apple has taken the wrappers off of its brand-new MacBook Pro line-up and, well, they are something special.

Apple has listened to its critics and has backtracked on a few features (RIP, Touch Bar) and added in a number of new ports and only gone and put a notch on the screen!

Couple this with upgraded chipsets and a battery life that is, well, stonking and what you have is what Apple’s called the “most powerful Mac notebooks ever”.

Here are five things to know about the new MacBook Pro range…

New MacBook Pro laptops: 5 things to know

1. There are three size screens to choose from - and they all come with a notch

The new MacBook Pro range comes in 14- and 16-inch screen sizes. The displays are Liquid Retina XDR and Apple reckons they are the world’s best notebook display, with up to 1,000 nits of sustained, full-screen brightness, 1,600 nits of peak brightness, and a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio. ProMotion technology is on board, too, which means you have a 120Hz screen but those Hz will be adapted depending on what you are doing with the thing.

Oh, and there’s now a notch on the screen, too. Yep, much like the iPhone there is a notch on board which houses 1080p FaceTime HD camera.

2. There are lots of new connections on this MacBook line-up

The last MacBook Pro range has a couple of ports missing but Apple has brought them back for the new MacBook range. On board are three Thunderbolt 4 ports, an SDXC card slot, an HDMI port and improved headphone jack. MagSafe returns to the MacBook Pro as well and there’s fast-charging - charging up to 50 percent in just 30 minutes.

3. The new M1 chips are ridiculously impressive

Apple has introduced two new M1 chips, the M1 Pro and M1 Max and they offer some impressive grunt for the laptops. The new chips have 10-core processors (count ‘em) that are said to be up to 70% faster than the current M1 that’s found in Apple’s MacBooks and iPad line-up. The chips either offer 16 or 32-core graphics and support up to 64GB memory.

4. There’s no more Touch Bar!

While Apple has added in a number of new features it has taken out one of its most controversial and that is the Touch Bar. This OLED strip was first introduced in 2016 and it is a feature that was meant to help video makers and the like, offering up relevant hot keys in whichever software you were using. This didn’t really happen, though, and for many it was just a glorified emoji bar.

5. Battery life has improved massively

Apple, thanks to its M1 chip, has managed to increase battery life once more in its laptops. The numbers are jaw dropping. Apple reckons you’ll get 17 hours of video playback in the 14-inch model which is an increase of seven houses from previous models. And if you opt for the 16-inch MacBook, then you’ll get up to 21 hours video playback which is a whopping 10 hours better than previous models.

Pre-orders are open for the new MacBook Pro models, which prices starting from £1,899 / $1,999.