You won't be able to swap SSDs on the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar

Unofficial prying has revealed a soldered-on SSD

As you’re probably aware, the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar has been shipping out to customers, and some brave early adopters have been cracking open the chassis to see what’s inside – finding for one thing that the SSDs in the laptops are soldered on.

In other words, they’re a permanent fixture on the motherboard, so you can’t remove and upgrade the SSD at a later date. That’s rather disappointing given that the base model MacBook Pro with no Touch Bar, which went on sale immediately following Apple’s big reveal last month, does have a removable drive.

So the cheapest machine has more flexibility, which doesn’t seem quite right. And if you want a MacBook Pro with Touch Bar which has a reasonably future-proof level of storage, you’re going to face quite a bill – even the entry-level model runs to $1,799/£1,749 and that’s with just 256GB of storage.

However, as 9 to 5 Mac, which spotted this development, notes, we haven’t seen the official teardowns yet; but there are multiple sources and photos (see a snap of the soldered SSD chips below) showing that this certainly appears to be the case.

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Comedy cells 

The other point of interest is that the new Touch Bar models have batteries which are more compact, even being described by one MacBook Pro innards-snapping owner as ‘comically small’.

There’s a considerable gap around the battery cells, far more so than in the previous MacBook Pro models, and that certainly looks strange, but presumably has been done for design reasons in terms of thermals and preventing overheating.

The trouble is that given some reviewers have found the laptop’s battery longevity wanting when compared to Apple’s claimed 10-hour life, again more displeasure has been provoked across the net at large. That’s hardly surprising given what folks are expected to fork out for these new models.

We can expect a price cut next year, but obviously that won’t be coming until the launch of refreshed models in the fall. Maybe the design will be further refined as well – Apple is apparently planning to offer 32GB of system memory as an option in 2017.

You can’t specify 32GB of RAM right now with the new Pro, and interestingly enough, Apple has indicated that this is due to battery/power issues. The curse of the compact battery strikes again?

Image Credit: 9 to 5 Mac