To Macbook Pro or not to Macbook Pro?

The latest Apple Event took place on 18th October 21, a showcase of the latest releases from the tech giant. This time, the focus was on Apple Music, the M1 Pro chips and a new lineup of MacBook Pro’s.

I’ll be honest, this event didn’t wow me as much as I thought it would. I was anticipating something in relation to the MacMini and different colours of the MacBook Pro’s.

HomePod mini in White

New colours came in, but only for the HomePod mini. I’ll be honest, had I not just brought a white one, I would have added a splash of yellow or orange to my home office setup. The colours are vibrant and I can see them being mixed and matched in many homes, maybe I’ll get one for the living room one day (though they’ll have to do it in blush to match the theme my partner has chosen!)

Music developments not only lay in the third generation of AirPods, which may have slightly different internals and a shorter stalk, but also with a new Apple Music subscription that’s exclusively built around Siri. 

For just £4.99 a month, you can use Siri to control Apple Music and access over 90 million songs. This subscription model seems a little odd to me, because you can still control Siri with Apple Music across all of your Apple devices, without having to pay £4.99. In fact, pay £9.99 a month for just Apple Music and you can physically see on devices that allow what you’re listening too, or use Apple Music as part of your Apple One subscription. 

I just get the feeling the Voice Only plan for Siri with Apple Music is a gimmick, a starter pack, for those who don’t want to dive into Apple fully, without trying it first. Though, if you’re getting an Apple Music subscription, then chances are you actually have other Apple devices around, like an iPhone or iPad. Unless of course, you’re rocking an Android and a HomePod, then the voice plan might work for you, but I’d question whether you’re getting the most out of your HomePod in this scenario. 

Then we move onto the showstoppers, the new range of MacBook Pro’s, with the new M1 Pro and M1 Max chips. These MacBooks really do pack a punch when looking at the tech specs. Honestly, they’re supercharged and I was potentially swayed enough to buy one, even on finance, until I saw the price. 

For the new 14 inch base model, you’re looking at shelling out £1,899. Up the CPU and the storage, the same model will set you back £2,399. The 16 inch will set you back anywhere from £2,399 to £3,299. If you’ve got the money, or your work are willing to pay, then go for it, but sadly these new models, at least if I brought them brand new, are out of the question. Though, I suspect second hand models will ask for a similar price, due to the array of features they have, including MagSafe, which they’ve brought back.

Credit: Apple

Needless to say from the Keynote around these new MacBooks, they’re made for creatives. I mean, not your daily creative who may whip up a few graphics in Photoshop for a charity like me, but, Hollywood style, cinematic, full on photographer and designer creatives. 

This is where I think I’ve felt a turning point with Apple, especially around their offering of computers. To me, there’s now a clear distinction as to what they’d like ‘everyday folk’ to use and those who don’t do such intensive creative work – it would be much cheaper to shell out for either a MacBook Air or a Mac mini, while the super creatives get the fancy stuff. 

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, it’s about time we had this clear distinction, but I have been buying MacBook Pro’s for as long as I can remember, but I can’t justify shelling out nearly £2k for a device that I know I’m not going to do intense creative work on, mainly that’s not my main field of work anymore, but the creative work I do undertake, isn’t that intense.

As I mentioned before, this event felt a little lacklustre in announcements, but I’m still an Apple Fan, because as I’ve said before, when you buy into Apple, you don’t just buy the physical hardware, you buy into the ecosystem, which if you have at least two or more Apple products, you know just works. 

In terms of what I’ll go for next, I think Apple have made the decision for me… I’ll either grab the MacBook Air with the M1 chip, or the Mac mini when it comes to renewing my current 2017 MBP. Whatever I get, I just need a 1080mp camera for those Teams and Zoom meetings.