Newsletter Issue #884: The Never-Ending MacBook Pro Controversy

November 7th, 2016

Apple customers are a passionate lot, and company decisions about new or changed products and services are going to receive lots of discussion. This is particularly true when there’s a controversial decision, such as removing a feature or ditching hardware.

Apple has been killing older Mac ports since the 1990s, when the first iMac appeared. It was a consumer machine, mostly using parts derived from PowerBooks. But it also came without a floppy drive, or support for ADB, for input devices, LocalTalk, for printers, or SCSI, for external drives and other devices. Instead, Apple went to USB, which seemed a curious decision at the time since it ran much slower than SCSI. At least then.

Indeed, when SCSI was first removed from Power Macs, a market developed for add-on SCSI cards, so you could continue to use your external gear with perhaps a special driver. It usually worked for as long as it lasted. The lack of a floppy drive could be dealt by using an external USB drive of some sort. Again, it was just a temporary crutch. Apple knew where the market was going.

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