If you own the last MacBook to have a DVD drive we have some bad news...

Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch and 15-inch 2012 models
(Image credit: Apple)

From time to time, Apple adds venerable Macs to its list of officially obsolete hardware, and the latest entrant to that club is the MacBook Pro 13-inch from mid-2012.

MacRumors noticed this development, and there’s something special about this particular MacBook Pro – namely that it was the last Apple laptop which had a CD/DVD drive.

Yes, remember those – the trays that slid out to receive a shiny circular silver (or maybe gold) disc? Well, the last MacBook toting an extendable wobbly plastic platter has now shuffled off into the land of obsolescence.

Obsolete products are ones which Apple ceases to offer servicing and repairs, and replacement parts - with the exception that some MacBooks may have an extended battery-only repair for up to 10 years from the date they were last sold, depending on availability of parts.

The MacBook Pro 13-inch that emerged in the middle of 2012 stayed on shelves until October 2016, and hardware is considered obsolete by Apple when it reaches seven years past that last-sold date. So, we’ve gone just a touch over that in the case of this laptop.

Analysis: Optical obsolescence

We can get all nostalgic about optical drives, of course, but the reality is that no laptops have them anymore. Well, that’s not entirely true, there’s still a niche of notebooks out there that carry a DVD drive, but they’re very rare. Heck, even desktop PCs don’t have optical drives anymore (where the thickness of the drive isn’t an issue – it was always, of course, one of the main stumbling blocks for laptops in the battle of trying to be suitably svelte).

The solution for those who do need an optical drive is simply to get a standalone one, and in the case of Apple, the company still sells an external SuperDrive for MacBook owners who still use DVDs or CDs.

Some still fondly remember the MacBook Pro 13-inch from 2012, for sure, in the era of upgradable laptop components (where you could – gasp – switch out the system RAM for better modules). Although others point to some of the issues with this notebook, like the decidedly iffy-sounding SATA cable design.

Whatever the case, if you have this laptop and it’s still chugging on even to this day, you’re going to be out of luck if you are looking for a repair going forward.

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Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).