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

With its construct quality, outstanding keyboard and enhanced durability, this is among the best computer systems you can purchase however it will cost you

Apple’s 13in MacBook Pro for 2017 now has battery life that matches the power of the hardware and the appeal of the style, even if it is still really pricey.

When the brand-new, revamped MacBook Pro was released in 2015 it included fairly old chips– Intel’s 6th generation Core i5 or i7 processor and incorporated graphics. While efficiency was probably up to par with comparable makers with the more recent, enhanced seventh generation Core i5 and i7, something the 13in MacBook Pro failed on was battery life.

A year on, a modified variation of the 13in MacBook Pro is offered and while absolutely nothing apparent has actually altered on the outdoors, it now features the seventh generation Intel chips and the brand-new variation of MacOS High Sierra– and will get you through practically a whole working day without charge.

 apple The Apple MacBook Pro running High Sierra comes gain from a brand-new, much faster file system. Picture: Apple

The MacBook Pro is a svelte, gorgeous maker, readily available in silver or “area grey” aluminium. At 1.37 kg it’s about 80g much heavier than Dell’s touch-screen XPS 13, however about 160g lighter than Microsoft’s Surface Book 2. It’s a comparable density to Dell’s maker at its 15mm thickest point, however thinner than the Surface Book 2 at its 23mm thickest point.

The screen is among the very best fitted to a laptop computer, with excellent watching angles, brightness and colour precision matching the P3 colour area, which is necessary if you’re aiming to modify images or video. The keyboard is still quite loud at complete tilt and has little provide when you depress the secrets, however is precise, with a strong feel. I like it, however some will dislike it.

The Touch Bar will still show dissentious, with some stating it slows them down, however app assistance for it has actually grown significantly, with a lot of prominent apps gaining from custom-made secrets. The Touch ID finger print scanner likewise works as marketed, and is definitely a beneficial addition, although now that the iPhone X features with Face ID it maybe feels a little bit of a substitute for facial acknowledgment.

The huge, pressure-sensitive touchpad is perhaps the very best in business– you’ll swear it moves thanks to the haptic feedback, however attempt it with the power off and you understand it does not.


  • Screen: 13.3 in 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 cam
  • Connectivity: Intel Iris 650, Wi-Fiac, Bluetooth 4.2, USB-C, Thunderbolt 3, earphone
  • Dimensions: 212.4 x 304.1 x 14.9 mm
  • Weight: 1.37 kg

Longer battery life

 apple The 4 USB-C ports on the MacBook Pro are spread out 2 on each side. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian

The 2017 13in MacBook Pro has sufficient power for basically anything the majority of people will desire it too, while the brand-new macOS High Sierra considerably accelerates some functions such as moving files. It’s at house modifying video, pictures and typically developing media. Even a light little bit of modifying video in 4K will be completely workable, however anybody seriously trying to utilize the 13in MacBook Pro to do heavy video or VR development will most likely discover the incorporated Intel Iris 650 graphics card a little anaemic.

Having stated that, it can a light little bit of video gaming, handling to run the graphically requiring XCOM 2 on low information and resolution settings with appropriate frame rates.

Testing the brand-new 13in TouchBar design with a Core i5 processor and 8GB or RAM, the most significant modification for 2017 is longer battery life. The 2017 13in MacBook Pro offered me 2 hours more battery life than the 2016 MacBook Pro did while utilizing both macOS Sierra and comparable with the more recent macOS High Sierra, lasting simply under 8 hours in between charges when utilized for a complete working day. That consisted of utilizing screen at around 70% brightness and having in between 5 and 10 tabs open in 2 circumstances of Chrome, along with Typora for text, Wire for chat, Mac Mail for e-mail, Reeder for RSS feeds and Pixelmator open periodically for image modifying when needed.

That’s a strong enhancement over the older design and nipping at the coat tails of the competitors, such as the seventh-generation Core i7 Dell XPS 13, which consistently handled simply over 8 hours under the exact same use conditions.

What hasn’t altered is the absence of non-USB-C ports. A year on the circumstance isn’t really much various. Having 4 USB-C ports is fantastic, especially as they all support Thunderbolt 3 and can charge the maker. Linking display screens and other non-USB peripherals utilizing USB-C is great, however it’s the odd USB-A flash drive, card reader or comparable that ends up being harder. It would be good to simply have simply one USB-A port.


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

For contrast, Dell’s XPS 13 with an equivalent screen and 8th generation Core i5 begins at 1,329 ( buy here ), Microsoft’s Surface Laptop begins at 979 ( buy here ), while the Surface Book 2 begins at 1,499 ( buy here ).


The 13in MacBook Pro is among the most refined effective laptop computers offered. There are definitely less expensive choices that are likewise outstanding, however none have rather the very same mix of develop quality, exceptional keyboard, enormous trackpad and substantial choice of USB-C ports.

The more recent Intel chips suggest among the failures of the previous design has actually been substantially enhanced. Under 8 hours of battery life is still rather away the suitable of a minimum of 10 hours, however is much closer to the competitors and will practically do easy work for a complete day for the majority of people.

It’s still extremely costly, still doing not have a USB-A port, there’s still a concern of whether it’s “pro” enough for experts and now there are more effective 8th generation Intel chips offered in competitors. The 13in MacBook Pro is still one of the best computer systems you can purchase. Utilizing it is a real enjoyment, and fortunately it now lasts long enough I can complete my work without grabbing a plug.

Pros: lovely, fantastic screen, Touch Bar, Touch ID, huge trackpad, reasonably light and thin, USB-C, OKAY battery life

Cons: no USB-A ports, no ethernet, no native display screen ports, no updating after purchase, really costly

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