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Apple: Touchscreen Mac would be “a waste of energy”

Apple has said making a touchscreen Mac would be a “waste of energy” and would make for a bad user experience.

It seems Apple has no intention of going all Windows 8 for Mac users in the future, saying adding a touchscreen is a “non-goal”.

Despite the slowing PC sales following the introduction of tablets and smartphones, Apple says the Mac is doing better than ever. The Mac actually celebrated its 30th birthday this week.

“The thing that has turbocharged the Mac has been the advent of the iPhone and the iPad,” said Bud Tribble, Apple’s Vice President of Software Technology. “That cross-pollination of ideas, the fact that the [Mac and iOS] teams are the same team, has propelled the Mac further than I had hoped for.”

Recent rumours, and patent filings we might add, have suggested Apple is considering introducing touchscreens to the Mac range. However, during the MacWorld interview, Apple execs have said it isn’t true.

“It’s obvious and easy enough to slap a touchscreen on a piece of hardware, but is that a good experience? We believe no”, said Craig Federighi, Apple’s Head of Software.

“We don’t waste time thinking, ‘but should it be one [interface]! How do you make these [operating systems] merge together?’ What a waste of energy that would be,” said Phil Schiller, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing at Apple.

Apple has also said there is no plan to merge iOS and OS X into one integrated operating system in the future.

“To say [OS X and iOS] should be the same, independent of their purpose? Let’s just converge, for the sake of convergence? [It’s] absolutely a non-goal”, added Federighi.

“You don’t want to say the Mac became less good at being a Mac because someone tried to turn it into iOS. At the same time, you don’t want to feel like iOS was designed by [one] company and Mac was designed by [a different] company, and they’re different for reasons of lack of common vision.”

Microsoft aims to create a OS experience that is the same across all products, regardless of screen size of usage, but Apple is determined to keep things separate. Every product has its strengths and sometimes the right tools for the job are a trackpad and keyboard.

“We have a common sense of aesthetics, a common set of principles that drive us, and we’re building the best products we can for their unique purposes. So you’ll see them be the same where that makes sense, and you’ll see them be different in those things that are critical to their essence”, said Federighi.

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