eXtensions - Wednesday 16 November 2016
Ordering a MacBook Pro; and Affinity Pro for Windows (Bangkok Post, Life)
By Graham K. Rogers
MacBook Pro 13" and 15" - Image Courtesy of Apple
Some seized on a letter reportedly from professional users (5 of them) that the MacBook Pro was proof that Apple had ceased to be creative following the death of Steve Jobs (Gary Winchester Martin, SLR Lounge). They did not seem to notice an opposing view by a professional editor in London who has been using a 15" MacBook Pro "for actual work", as that does not fit the narrative (Thomas Grove Carter, Huffington Post).
Oddly, despite the smoke and mirrors from critics, the iPhone 7 has also become the best selling smartphone in the USA and UK. More than a few have been sold in this region too, I believe.
The additional RAM in my current MacBook Pro was one factor that made it such a good performer. As the new versions have the faster PCIe-based SSD units (a serial expansion bus standard for connecting a computer to one or more peripheral devices: TechTarget), I expect even more. I did toy with the idea of upgrading the processor to 3.1 GHz from the standard 2.9GHz, but I am not convinced I would see enough benefits from the extra cost for what I do.
MacBook Pro - Image Courtesy of Apple
Although the Apple site reported a delivery delay of 2-3 weeks, when I placed my order this changed to 4-5 weeks: between 15 and 19 December. I am not sure if that is because of the extra memory, the purchase via the Education page, or if demand is causing the arrival dates to slip back further. The main ordering page has been updated and now also shows 4-5 weeks like the US site.
While Apple improved its English language purchasing here after the changes last year, the Education pages are all in Thai (so is the email confirmation). Although I can (sort of) recognise the addresses that needed to be selected, I had to resort to Google translate once or twice. Back in August when I ordered an iPhone SE on the English pages for a friend's birthday, it all sailed through without any problem.
I will also pick up a couple of cables, such as a USB-C to Lightning connector. Before deciding where to buy, I suggest users compare pricing between iStudio outlets and the Apple online site: the multiport and USB-C to USB adapters were far cheaper online when I checked.
Several apps have already been updated with support for the MacBook Pro Touch Bar. MacRumors name Gestimer, Opus One, Disk Aid, and Memory Clean 2; and the well-known OmniGraffle (Joe Rossignol). On Monday, TechCrunch also put out a list of those that will support the Touch Bar (Brian Heater).
On Tuesday evening, an update to Pixelmator appeared. Among other improvements, this has now been optimised with Touch Bar integration. Several more apps are expected to be updated in the near future including those from Serif who produce Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo.
Affinity Photo on Microsoft Surface - Image from Serif
While I am pleased that Windows users can now try one of my favourite applications, I am looking forward to the iOS version that should be available early next year. I saw this running on an iPad Pro when I went to the Nottingham offices of Serif in August and am excited by the potential.
Affinity Photo on the Mac
Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs. He is now continuing that in the Bangkok Post supplement, Life. He can be followed on Twitter (@extensions_th)
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