Apple Says Notch is a 'Smart Way' to Give Users More Space for Content on New MacBook Pros

The notch on the newly redesigned MacBook Pro offers a "smart way" to give users more room for their content and allowed Apple to make the bezels thinner and provide more screen real estate to customers, an Apple official has said during a recent media interview.

macbook pro 2021 notch feature
The inclusion of a notch on the entirely revamped MacBook Pros was a surprise and was one of the few last-minute rumors that surfaced ahead of Apple's "Unleashed" event last week. As expected, some social media users have criticized Apple's design choice of adding a notch to the display.

Addressing the company's decision, Shruti Haldea, a manager for the Mac product line and one of the presenters of last week's Apple event, said during an interview on the Same Brain podcast that the notch is a "smart" solution for the Mac as it provides users more room for their content by moving the macOS menu bar out of the way.

What we've done is we've actually made the display taller. Like on the 16-inch notebook, you still have a 16.0 active area on the diagonal in that 16:10-inch window, and we just grew the display up from there and put the menu bar up there. We just kind of moved it up and out of the way. So it's a really smart way to give you more space for your content, and when you're in full-screen mode, you have that 16:10 window, and it looks great. It's seamless.


Compared to previous iterations of the MacBook Pro design, the new 14-inch and 16-inch models do feature significantly smaller bezels. Apple says the bezels are 24% thinner than the previous generation on the left and right sides of the display, measuring only 3.5mm. On the top, thanks to the notch, the bezel is 60% thinner, also measuring at 3.5mm.

While the notch is noticeable at first, Apple is betting on some macOS software features, including dark mode, to help minimize how noticeable it is to some users in day-to-day use. For example, when macOS apps are in full-screen mode, the system adds a black border to the top of the display, hiding the notch while not interfering with a user's content. Developers can choose to have their app's content shown on either side of the notch.

The notch is one many changes to the new MacBook Pros. The new laptops feature an entirely redesigned chassis, additional ports such as HDMI and an SD card slot, MagSafe, a mini-LED display with ProMotion, and either the M1 Pro or M1 Max chips, which are the first Apple silicon chips designed for professional consumers.

Both the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models became available for pre-order last week and will start arriving to customers on Tuesday, October 26. Both sizes can be configured with either the ‌M1 Pro‌ or ‌M1 Max‌ chips, giving users substantial performance gains compared to the M1 Apple silicon chip. Learn more about the new MacBook Pros using our detailed roundup.

Related Roundup: 14 & 16" MacBook Pro
Related Forum: MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

a m u n Avatar
5 weeks ago


Attachment Image
Score: 127 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MacFather Avatar
5 weeks ago
Deleted.
Score: 76 Votes (Like | Disagree)
andrewxgx Avatar
5 weeks ago
Doing this without notch would be way smarter though
Score: 69 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ? Avatar
5 weeks ago
Apple does have a good point here. Especially if it was designed by Jony Ive’s. The notch was able to introduce a bigger screen factor on an iPhone X too comparing with iPhone 8 Pro Max.

It only took Apple 4 years to admit a NOTCH is necessary for a bigger screen.

Years later same concept is being assigned to the MacBook Pro line up.

The fact Apple is so proud of the notch is just amazing! Impressed by the creativity at Apple.



Attachment Image
Score: 65 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Superhappytree Avatar
5 weeks ago
It still looks bloody awful no matter how they or anyone else tries to spin it. It’s an eyesore. Not everyone likes using dark mode to try and ‘hide’ it either.

When you have to resort to using workarounds via software to try and disguise a hardware design decision then that is bad design. End of story.
Score: 64 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Milennia Avatar
5 weeks ago
Once I learned that the notch area doesn’t impede on the actual 14.2" etc. of the screen and is instead EXTRA space to fit the menu bar in, I stopped caring about the notch entirely, not that I cared much anyway
Score: 49 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

macos notch hides in full screen

macOS Hides the Notch on New MacBook Pro in Full-Screen Mode

Monday October 18, 2021 1:49 pm PDT by
The new MacBook Pros, for the first time in a Mac, feature a notch. While some have been quick to criticize Apple's design choice, it turns out that the notch may not be entirely visible in day-to-day use when using apps in full screen, as when macOS apps are in full-screen mode, it essentially disappears. According to Apple's marketing material, when macOS apps are in full-screen mode,...
remove notch app feature2

Can't Get Used to Your MacBook Pro's Notch? These Apps Will Hide It for You

Wednesday October 27, 2021 3:54 am PDT by
If you bought a new MacBook Pro and you're having a hard time acclimatizing to the notch at the top of the screen in the middle of the menu bar, there's an app for that. The inclusion of a display notch on the redesigned MacBook Pros was a surprise to most observers and was one of the few last-minute rumors that surfaced ahead of their unveiling. Some have since criticized Apple's design ...
MacBook Pro Notch Feature

New MacBook Pro Could Have a Notch, Says Sketchy Last-Minute Rumor

Friday October 15, 2021 8:22 am PDT by
Apple's redesigned MacBook Pro models could feature a notch containing the webcam, according to a sketchy last-minute rumor that is circulating online. MacRumors' render of a next-generation MacBook Pro with a notch. The rumor appears to have originated from a Weibo user in China, who stipulates that the redesigned MacBook Pro will feature a notch. It apparently has a size "similar to iPhone...
M1X MBP Feature

Apple Plans to Obscure MacBook Pro Notch With Wallpaper in Marketing Images

Sunday October 17, 2021 11:20 am PDT by
Last minute rumors that came out just days ago suggest that the MacBook Pro will feature a notch at the top for the 1080p webcam and ambient light sensor, but it turns out information about a notch was shared months ago by a Chinese leaker that may have been the source for several other rumors about the upcoming 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models. In a forum post shared in August, "ty98" ...
14 inch macbook pro hands on featured

New Images Offer Even Closer Look at New 14-Inch MacBook Pro

Saturday October 23, 2021 3:46 pm PDT by
Ahead of an official launch later this week, new images sent to MacRumors show the new 14-inch MacBook Pro on display at an Apple Authorized Reseller, offering us an even closer look at Apple's entirely revamped MacBook Pro. The new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros were by far two of the most highly anticipated and talked about Apple product releases of the entire year. Now that Apple has...
mbp flattened with notch

Apple Patent Offers Sketch of Possible Notch Implementation in New MacBook Pros

Sunday October 17, 2021 1:49 am PDT by
Following the last-minute rumor that Apple's upcoming new MacBook Pro models could feature a notch at the top of the display, much of the online discussion has involved concerns that such a notch would encroach on the active screen area, potentially eating into the macOS menu bar. MacRumors concept render of notched MacBook Pro display However, it's worth noting that Apple has explored ways...
macbook pro 2021 notch feature2

How the Mouse Pointer Deals with the Notch on the MacBook Pro

Tuesday October 19, 2021 1:57 pm PDT by
The new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros both feature a notch, a first for the Mac. Given we've never had a notch on a Mac, there are some questions over how macOS handles the notch, and more specifically, how the mouse pointer does. The predicament about how the mouse pointer handles the notch has been a question floated across Twitter and Reddit over the last 24 hours or so since the new...
macbook pro notch weibo

MacBook Pro With Notch Was Potentially Leaked Months Ago in Stolen Schematics

Sunday October 17, 2021 10:45 am PDT by
Following a last-minute rumor that upcoming 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models could feature a notch at the top of the display, it has come to our attention that this design was potentially leaked in stolen schematics months ago. Back in April, a ransomware group known as REvil publicly stated that it had gained access to internal information from Apple supplier Quanta Computer in...
macbook pro 2021 notch

New macOS 'Compatibility Mode' Options Let Developers Decide How Fullscreen Apps Handle the Notch

Tuesday October 19, 2021 12:55 am PDT by
While users and developers come to terms with the fact that the last-minute notch rumor for the new MacBook Pros was true, Apple has released new Human Interface Guidelines explaining how developers can make the best use of the extended screen areas around the camera housing if they think their app would benefit from it. According to the new documentation, the fullscreen mode in macOS...
macbook pro 14 16 inch

Apple Unveils Redesigned MacBook Pro With Notch, Added Ports, ProMotion Mini-LED Display, M1 Pro or M1 Max Chip, and More

Monday October 18, 2021 10:32 am PDT by
Apple today announced its long-awaited major redesign for the MacBook Pro, featuring configurations with the M1 Pro and M1 Max chip, a mini-LED display with ProMotion, an HDMI port and SDXC card reader, charging with MagSafe 3, a notch housing a 1080p webcam, and more. The MacBook Pro features a new design and is available with 14.2-inch and 16.2-inch display sizes. The 14.2-inch model is...