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ExtraBITS for 7 November 2016

In ExtraBITS this week, developer Marco Arment argues for the Mac Pro’s continued existence, while Apple’s Phil Schiller and Jony Ive give rare interviews to discuss the new MacBook Pro.

Marco Arment Argues for the Mac Pro — Is the Mac Pro dead? It has been three years since Apple last updated its top-of-the-line Mac, giving the impression that the company has abandoned it. Developer Marco Arment argues that dropping the Mac Pro would be a mistake. He provides a wide variety of reasons why the Mac Pro is still necessary, such as having more than four cores, more graphics processing power, the capability to install far more RAM than Apple’s other Macs, and greater reliability. Either way, Apple should issue a statement about its plans for the Mac Pro so professional users who rely on the Mac Pro’s unique capabilities can react accordingly.

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Apple’s Phil Schiller Discusses the New MacBook Pros — Phil Schiller, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing, spoke with the Independent about the just-released MacBook Pro models. Schiller admitted to being surprised by the backlash engendered by the new laptop, but he said that Apple’s online store has taken more orders for the new models than any previous professional laptop. He also explained why the new laptops have headphone jacks, why they lack SD card slots, and why we can’t activate Siri on the Mac via “Hey Siri” without an Accessibility hack.

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Apple’s Jony Ive on the Touch Bar and Thinking Different — Apple Chief Design Officer Jony Ive sat down with CNET to discuss his design process and the Touch Bar in the new MacBook Pro. Ive reveals that his team spent years working on the concepts that eventually became the Touch Bar. That process wasn’t easy — they often had to prototype what was essentially a full product before they could even test it properly. That begs the question: what ideas did Apple develop, test, and dismiss before moving ahead with the Touch Bar?

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