Leaked MacBook Pro images suggest row of OLED Function keys
Apple may be preparing for massive changes on the upcoming MacBook Pro 2016 refresh according to these latest images from Cult of Mac. This will apparently be the first major update to the series since the MacBook Pro Retina in 2012 that was in development under the late Steve Jobs.
The images show a uniform metal base that suggests a new upcoming 13-inch model. As predicted in an earlier rumor, the top row of Function keys appear to have been replaced by an OLED touch bar that may offer similar features and more flexibility. Lenovo toyed with a similar feature in its 2014 ThinkPad X1 Carbon where the top row of Fuction keys were replaced by an LCD touch panel. The feature proved to be unpopular and the manufacturer reverted back to standard keys no more than a year later. Exactly how Apple plans to avoid the same fate, however, remains to be seen.
Additional images of the chassis reveal rearranged connectivity ports as well. Instead of dedicated mDP or HDMI ports or an SD reader, the future MacBook Pro make include up to four USB Type-C + Thunderbolt 3 ports. The only other port is the standard 3.5 mm audio jack as even the MagSafe port looks to be gone since users can simply charge the notebook through an existing USB Type C port.
If the images and changes prove to be true, then the upcoming refresh will be a large step forward for the MacBook series as a whole.