The 2012 MacBook Pro With Retina Display Is Now 'Vintage'

People love "vintage." Fashionistas search thrift stores for old clothes, winos discuss the merits of a particular growing season, and retailers constantly find ways to make their products resemble something from the '50s. Apple doesn't use the word in a positive way, though, so its decision to designate the MacBook Pro with Retina Display that debuted in 2012 as "vintage" doesn't bode well for it.

Products that the company stopped manufacturing more than five years ago receive one of two designations: "Vintage" products haven't been manufactured for more than five but less than seven years and can only receive support from Apple service providers in Turkey or California and "Obsolete" products are those for which production ceased more than seven years ago; they aren't supported at all.

That means Apple stopped manufacturing the first MacBook Pro with Retina Display sometime between 2011 and 2013. The laptop was released in 2012, so Apple either made one run of the product before its debut or stopped manufacturing it just a year after release. It's not all that surprising either way, because the MacBook Pro with Retina Display was a way to introduce high-resolution displays to all MacBooks, not just the Pro line.

You can now find a Retina display in the baseline MacBook as well as the latest MacBook Pro models. Apple has also updated the MacBook Pro line with everything from the Touch Bar, which enables unique controls for individual apps right above the keyboard, to improved components and completely redesigned systems. The only laptop Apple still sells without a Retina display is the MacBook Air.

Some, however, see this version of the MacBook Pro as the best available, as it doesn't use Apple's butterfly switches that have been plagued with issues. Now, it's going away completely.

As interesting as "Retina Display" sounds, the term was coined when Apple revealed the iPhone 4 in 2010, and Steve Jobs used it to claim that phone's 960 x 640 resolution 3.5" display was so dense the human eye couldn't see individual pixels. (That claim isn't entirely accurate, and it depends on the distance between the display and the eye, but whatever.) A high-resolution display was enough to set the MacBook Pro with Retina Display apart in 2012; it's just another feature in 2018.

So if you've managed to hold on to your 2012-era MacBook Pro with Retina Display for this long, well, enjoy being able to say you have a "vintage" laptop while you still can. It's only a matter of time before Apple's designation catches up with the perception of that laptop being obsolete.

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