Touch Bar

Apple apparently working on additional MacBook Pro models without Touch Bar

Thom Holwerda, managing editor of OSnews, heard from “people and sources who know their stuff” that Apple’s been working on additional MacBook Pro models without TouchBar. Sources claim the decision to develop new MacBook Pros sans Touch Bar was made because Apple was taken aback by harsh criticism that professional users leveled at the latest MacBook Pro models.

Speed up or slow down iTunes playback for podcasts, audiobooks, and music with Speed-Up

Still enjoying iTunes despite the beautiful mess it has become on macOS? If the answer is yes, perhaps listen up for this one. Every once in a while, seemingly low-key and low-price apps pop up in the market, claiming to have identified an imperfection or gap in Apple’s software, and in the next breath promising the fix for it. Some of these apps are superfluous to the user for the simple reason that the touted feature is already in place in Apple’s mothership software (in some shape or form), other apps are gimmicky or overly flawed.

Speed-Up for Mac firmly sits in the opposite camp, the one where ostensibly small apps are extremely wholesome and deliver on the promised goods. So what does it promise you ask? Put simply, to speed up or slow down your iTunes playback, an option otherwise notably absent on macOS. If this sounds surprisingly succinct or sober to you, that’s because it is.

Speed-Up treasures simplicity over bells & whistles, and is probably worth a look if you have ever caught yourself wishing for a speed lever in the thick of an Audiobook or Podcast session on your MacBook.

djay Pro for Mac gains deep Pioneer DJ integration, Touch Bar improvements & more

Algoriddim’s Apple Design Award-winning djay Pro for macOS was updated on Mac App Store today with Pioneer DJ integration and other improvements. The app is now officially certified by Pioneer DJ to be used with their high end gear, including CDJ-2000NXS2/Tour setups via plug and play. “To our knowledge, djay Pro is the first third-party app to support Pioneer DJ’s Pro DJ Link technology, which means users connect up to four CDJs with their Pioneer mixer and control djay Pro through a single USB cable (mixer to Mac),” Algoriddim’s Michael Simmons told me in an email message.

How to disable Touch Bar on MacBook Pro

Apple’s 13 and 15-inch 2016 MacBook Pros come outfitted with Touch Bar, which is an OLED display strip in place of the physical function keys at the top of your keyboard. Touch Bar updates its graphics dynamically based on what you’re doing and apps that you’re using, giving you one-tap access to common features and shortcuts on your Mac.

In this tutorial, we’ll be discussing turning off app shortcuts displayed in your Touch Bar altogether so that its layout mimics that of your Mac’s keyboard. This will let you tap a button to access standard macOS features like brightness, volume and media controls, Mission Control, Launchpad, Siri or—yes—even those Fn keys.

Microsoft previews Touch Bar support in Office for Mac

Microsoft was one of the companies mentioned during Apple’s “Hello again” Mac event last October as working on implementing support for Touch Bar shortcuts in their productivity apps.

Today, the Windows maker launched a preview of Touch Bar shortcuts on the new MacBook Pro available across its suite of Office apps. Beginning this week, users on Microsoft’s beta program, dubbed Office Insider, will be able to test the new Touch Bar support across Word, PowerPoint, Excel and Outlook for Mac.

How to turn on and use Touch Bar zoom

Visually impaired users who own Apple’s new MacBook Pro notebook with Touch Bar may be pleased to learn that macOS provides a set of specialized Accessibility features that help people who are blind or have low vision enjoy the compelling features of Touch Bar. If you have difficulty seeing items in your Touch Bar, turning this feature on renders a larger Touch Bar on the main display. Other users should check out Touch Bar zoom, too.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to turn Touch Bar zoom on, increase or decrease the zoom level, select or split-tap an item on Touch Bar and use other specialized gestures.

Consumer Reports reportedly stands by its controversial MacBook Pro battery findings

As you probably heard, the influential consumer organization Consumer Reports is not recommending Apple’s new MacBook Pro due to inconsistent battery performance. Apple’s marketing honcho Phill Schiller responded by saying that the product-testing magazine’s test results don’t match the company’s own data. 9to5Mac reached out to Consumer Reports to learn more about their findings, here’s what the magazine had to say.