Apple 13in MacBook Pro (2017) review: battery life to get through a working day | Technology

Apple’s 13in MacBook Pro for 2017 now has battery life that matches the power of the hardware and the beauty of the design, even if it is still very expensive.

When the new, redesigned MacBook Pro was launched last year it came with relatively old chips – Intel’s sixth generation Core i5 or i7 processor and integrated graphics. While performance was arguably up to par with similar machines with the newer, improved seventh generation Core i5 and i7, one thing the 13in MacBook Pro fell short on was battery life.

A year on, a revised version of the 13in MacBook Pro is available and while nothing obvious has changed on the outside, it now comes with the seventh generation Intel chips and the new version of MacOS High Sierra – and will get you through almost an entire working day without charge.

apple macbook pro review



The Apple MacBook Pro running High Sierra comes benefits from a new, faster file system. Photograph: Apple

The MacBook Pro is a svelte, beautiful machine, available in silver or “space grey” aluminium. At 1.37kg it’s about 80g heavier than Dell’s touch-screen XPS 13, but about 160g lighter than Microsoft’s Surface Book 2. It’s a similar thickness to Dell’s machine at its 15mm thickest point, but thinner than the Surface Book 2 at its 23mm thickest point.

The screen is one of the best fitted to a laptop, with good viewing angles, brightness and colour accuracy matching the P3 colour space, which is important if you’re trying to edit images or video. The keyboard is still pretty noisy at full tilt and has little give when you depress the keys, but is accurate, with a solid feel. I like it, but some will hate it.

The Touch Bar will still prove divisive, with some saying it slows them down, but app support for it has grown dramatically, with most high-profile apps benefiting from custom keys. The Touch ID fingerprint scanner also works as advertised, and is certainly a useful addition, although now that the iPhone X comes with with Face ID it perhaps feels a bit of a stopgap for facial recognition.

The big, pressure-sensitive touchpad is arguably the best in the business – you’ll swear it moves thanks to the haptic feedback, but try it with the power off and you realise it doesn’t.

Specifications

  • Screen: 13.3in LCD 2560×1600 (227 ppi)
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 or i7 (7th generation)
  • RAM: 8 or 16GB
  • Storage: 128, 256, 512GB or 1TB
  • Operating system: macOS High Sierra
  • Camera: 720p FaceTime HD camera
  • Connectivity: Intel Iris 650, Wi-Fiac, Bluetooth 4.2, USB-C, Thunderbolt 3, headphone
  • Dimensions: 212.4 x 304.1 x 14.9mm
  • Weight: 1.37kg

Longer battery life

apple macbook pro review



The four USB-C ports on the MacBook Pro are spread two on each side. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian

The 2017 13in MacBook Pro has enough power for pretty much anything most people will want it too, while the new macOS High Sierra significantly speeds up some functions such as moving files. It’s at home editing video, photos and generally creating media. Even a light bit of editing video in 4K will be perfectly manageable, but anyone seriously attempting to use the 13in MacBook Pro to do heavy video or VR creation will probably find the integrated Intel Iris 650 graphics card a little anaemic.

Having said that, it was capable of a light bit of gaming, managing to run the graphically demanding XCOM 2 on low detail and resolution settings with acceptable frame rates.

Testing the new 13in TouchBar model with a Core i5 processor and 8GB or RAM, the biggest change for 2017 is longer battery life. The 2017 13in MacBook Pro gave me two hours more battery life than the 2016 MacBook Pro did while using both macOS Sierra and similar with the newer macOS High Sierra, lasting just under eight hours between charges when used for a full working day. That included using screen at around 70% brightness and having between five and 10 tabs open in two instances of Chrome, as well as Typora for text, Wire for chat, Mac Mail for email, Reeder for RSS feeds and Pixelmator open intermittently for image editing when required.

That’s a solid improvement over the older model and nipping at the coat tails of the competition, such as the seventh-generation Core i7 Dell XPS 13, which routinely managed just over eight hours under the same usage conditions.

What hasn’t changed is the lack of non-USB-C ports. A year on the situation isn’t much different. Having four USB-C ports is great, particularly as they all support Thunderbolt 3 and can charge the machine. Connecting displays and other non-USB peripherals using USB-C is fine, but it’s the odd USB-A flash drive, card reader or similar that becomes more difficult. It would be nice to just have just one USB-A port.

Price

The 13in MacBook Pro with Touch Bar starts at £1,749 (buy here). A non-Touch Bar version is available for £1,249 (buy here).

For comparison, Dell’s XPS 13 with a comparable screen and 8th generation Core i5 starts at £1,329 (buy here), Microsoft’s Surface Laptop starts at £979 (buy here), while the Surface Book 2 starts at £1,499 (buy here).

Verdict

The 13in MacBook Pro is one of the most refined powerful laptops available. There are certainly cheaper options that are also excellent, but none of them have quite the same combination of build quality, excellent keyboard, massive trackpad and extensive selection of USB-C ports.

The newer Intel chips mean one of the downfalls of the previous model has been significantly improved. Under eight hours of battery life is still quite far off the ideal of at least 10 hours, but is much closer to the competition and will just about do light work for a full day for most people.

It’s still very expensive, still lacking a USB-A port, there’s still a question of whether it’s “pro” enough for professionals and now there are more powerful eighth generation Intel chips available in rivals. But the 13in MacBook Pro is still one of the nicest computers you can buy. Using it is a genuine pleasure, and thankfully it now lasts long enough I can finish my work without reaching for a plug.

Pros: beautiful, great screen, Touch Bar, Touch ID, massive trackpad, thin and relatively light, USB-C, OK battery life

Cons: no USB-A ports, no ethernet, no native display ports, no upgrading after purchase, very expensive

apple macbook pro review



The 13in MacBook Pro looks great open or closed. Photograph: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian

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Alibaba’s Singles’ Day sale amassed $25.3 billion, doubling Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined sales

A decade ago, November 11th was a tongue-in-cheek cultural “celebration” of single people in China. In 2009, retailer Alibaba turned the day into the country’s version of Black Friday — and eight years later, sales from the Chinese e-commerce’s one-day event has nearly doubled those from Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the US combined.

Alibaba reported that sales from Singles’ Day amounted to $25.3 billion, a 40 percent jump from last year’s figures. (The number did not take into account some sales that began earlier in the week in honor of the event.) Additionally, the retailer hit a record $18 billion in just 13 hours on Saturday, eclipsing last year’s record of $17.8 billion in 24 hours. Market research experts say the massive growth is attributed to retailers competing for a share of consumer spending in China’s growing economy. In comparison, US sales between Thanksgiving until Cyber Monday accounted for $12.8 billion in 2016.

Just like US versions of the shopping holidays, Alibaba offered discounts on a variety of goods, from household items to electronic gadgets to clothing to beauty supplies. Quirkier items meant to nail in on the joke about the nature of Singles’ Day were heavily promoted, such as a one time payment of 11,111 yuan (roughly $1,672 USD) for a lifetime supply of baiju liquor. Revenue also came in the form of “virtual shopping cart space,” where customers can pay for expanded cart capacity. The Sixth Tone reports that Chinese retailers traditionally put a limit on how many items you can put in your online shopping cart to help “ease operations,” encouraging buyers to put in one purchase order rather than multiple transactions that require more processing.

In honor of the event, Alibaba founder Jack Ma held a gala to celebrate its kickoff, with celebrities like Pharrell, Nicole Kidman, Jessie J, and Maria Sharapova in attendance. It was televised on both Alibaba’s video service and on three Chinese TV networks. Ahead of the event, the retailer also outfitted nearly 100,000 of its Tmall stores across China with facial recognition technology to process payments.

Drift0r is Going to Extreme Lengths to Stream Call of Duty WWII on Launch Day | Esports News & Videos

Drift0r is Heading to Extraordinary Lengths to Stream Simply call of Duty WWII on Launch Working day

Preferred YouTuber Brad ‘Drift0r’ Overbey is arranging to dwell stream Simply call of Duty: WWII on start working day at all charges.

Mainly regarded for his ‘in-depth’ sequence on YouTube where by he breaks down the inner-workings of a variety of game titles, Drift0r has amassed a faithful pursuing of supporters and supporters in the CoD neighborhood right after uploading films on the platform consistently for many years.

When he does branch out to other titles from time to time, Simply call of Duty nevertheless continues to be his selection one curiosity in phrases of material, also building up a trustworthy dwell streaming fanbase more than time.

With CoD: WWII set to launch on November 3rd, Drift0r has unfortunately been without web obtain for just about a 7 days, with his services supplier unable to give him a concrete day as to when it will be set.

Decided to make it get the job done at all charges, he announced that the WWII start working day stream will be taking position at his nearby public library ‘because they have web.’

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On the other hand, it seems that his ISP might basically be able to conserve the working day, yet it is nevertheless up in the air.

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No matter if or not the library stream is basically necessary, Drift0r is adamant of broadcasting gameplay of the new title to his supporters no make a difference what on November 3rd.

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eSports: Neeb Breathtaking in the Starcraft 2 WCS International Finals 2017 Working day Just one Group Stage

It was one more motion packed day of Starcraft 2 at WCS Montreal on [Sunday].  But the most interesting detail to discuss about was the American [Protoss] Neeb.  He just played out of his head, crazy excellent!  It was like viewing a master at perform.  He did all the minor factors proper for the duration of sport play.  He took his Microing to the next amount. Let’s jump proper into the motion and see just how Neeb [Protoss] gained this match.

American [Protoss] Neeb faced off in opposition to South Korean [Zerg] Real in the Semi Finals, and it was a blow out.  Neeb [Protoss] did his Adept Harrass early on.  He caught Real out of position various instances.  The initially Match finished promptly for Real [Zerg], with Neeb [Protoss] profitable.

Then in the 2nd Match Neeb [Protoss] Massed Oracles.  He applied his Oracles to harass the Drone Mineral Lines.  It was excellent!  He even applied Phoenix’s to cleanse them up.  At a person issue in the sport, he even picked up his own Adept off the floor to guard it from Zerglings.  Speak about incredible Micro, this dude does it all!  Neeb [Protoss] would get the acquire [2-0] in the most effective of 5.

In Match 3 of the Match Up, Neeb [Protoss] did some early “Cheese”.  He Cannon Rushed the Zerg and boy was it unpredictable.  Real [Zerg] did his most effective to endure it which was remarkable since it looked like the Match would close there.  Real [Zerg] bought his bases recognized ultimately following various minutes.  Then Neeb [Protoss] transitioned for his counter attack and it crushed Real [Zerg] hopes at advancing. Neeb [Protoss] took the Match [3-0].

The Norweign [Zerg] Snute vs the Polish [Zerg] Elazer was quickly forgettable.  ZvZ is enjoyment to observe at times and this Match Up was in all probability the most effective Sequence to observe ZvZ.  Me personally I’m not a massive ZvZ fan.  But I can say that you can decide up a lot of excellent tactics viewing these 5 Online games.  I mean very seriously, they experienced every thing.  Snute [Zerg] would go on to conquer Elazer [Zerg], who is the only other WCS Significant Champion this 12 months, [3-2].

Now on to the Grand Finals the place it was Neeb [Protoss] vs Snute [Zerg].  In Match 1, of the most effective of 7, Neeb [Protoss] went proper into “Charge” Zealots.  He did good harass early on but his Micromanaging of models was just out there.  This is a guy who can conquer you just with a handful of models, hardly ever head a Golden Armada!  He took Match 1.

Then in Match 2 we saw Neeb [Protoss] push his Microing to the restrictions.  He started out out with his regular Probe scouting and went straight away for Air and Templar Archives.  The way he played next still left me speechless. He Microed 2 Prisms with 2 Arcons every single at the very same time.  He would attack with each of them and decide them up when they bought minimal on shields.

It was something that I experienced only seen the Koreans do.  And wow, it was masterful!  He saved as a lot of models as he could for the duration of the heat of struggle. He would do the very same factors like this in the other Online games but here in Match 2 is the place he observed his self-assurance and groove to do this about and about all over again.  It was just so excellent, and permit me remind you he was up in opposition to Snute, a person of the most effective European Zerg gamers!  Snute experienced no response to this observe up and finished up shedding the Match to Neeb [Protoss] [4-0].

Neeb [Protoss] actually dominated WCS Montreal 2017.  His report for the previous 20 Online games, or Maps, was [17-2].  This is something that we have hardly ever seen from an American in the Starcraft scene.  This was his 3rd Significant Championship Win this 12 months, out of a complete of 4 WCS Circuit.  I mean very seriously his acquire here in WCS Montreal places him up there with some of the most effective in the entire world. And I believe it is risk-free to say that he is prepared for the Koreans.

Neeb [Protoss] will be participating in for it all, in the International Finals in November at Blizzcon.  He will be up in opposition to the Top 8 Ranked Players in the WCS Circuit as properly as the Top 8 Ranked Players in the Korean GSL Circuit.  Anticipate him to do excellent factors at this previous Invitation only International Tournament.  He will have to conquer some of the most effective Koreans to get that Title of World Champion.  It would be the initially time an American experienced a person it.  I’m imagining he can do it, Go Neeeeb!