5 things we just learned from the MacBook Pro leak

Did Apple just accidentally let slip big changes for the MacBook Pro? Looks like it.

Sean Hollister Senior Editor / Reviews
When his parents denied him a Super NES, he got mad. When they traded a prize Sega Genesis for a 2400 baud modem, he got even. Years of Internet shareware, eBay'd possessions and video game testing jobs after that, he joined Engadget. He helped found The Verge, and later served as Gizmodo's reviews editor. When he's not madly testing laptops, apps, virtual reality experiences, and whatever new gadget will supposedly change the world, he likes to kick back with some games, a good Nerf blaster, and a bottle of Tejava.
Sean Hollister
2 min read
Martin Hajek

You could be looking at the new MacBook Pro. Two days before Apple's event on October 27, MacRumors found this picture buried inside the latest Mac OS Sierra update.

But there's more to this photo than meets the eye. It's not just corroboration that Apple will probably announce new MacBooks in a couple of days.

Assuming the photo is legit, it also shows just how radically the MacBook Pro is about to change.

No escape

Go ahead, look for the Escape key. It's not there.

No more Option-Command-Esc to force close apps. No more hitting Escape to exit full-screen apps -- assuming your apps supported it.

Touch ID

See what the person is doing in the picture above? They're paying for something with a finger -- with a Touch ID fingerprint sensor. That means there's a fingerprint sensor in the new MacBook Pro. Which also suggests that maybe, it won't just be for buying things. We'd be surprised if you couldn't quickly log into the next Mac with a finger as well.

Enlarge Image

Magic Toolbar

Of course, that black bar on top isn't just a fingerprint sensor -- it's almost certainly the OLED touchscreen strip, aka Magic Toolbar, we've been hearing about for months.

Which should be super cool, because developers could probably put all sorts of contextual shortcuts up there. Each app could have its own specific buttons, or imagine scrubbing across a video editing timeline! But it could also be a bit of a bummer if you need to quickly adjust the screen brightness or volume, now that those dedicated shortcut keys are gone.

("Magic Toolbar" is just a guess, but it's a very educated one: The Trademark Ninja claims that Apple has registered that trademark.)

Watch this: New MacBook features a 'full-size keyboard'

Shallow keyboard

If you aren't a fan of the ultrathin, butterfly-hinged keys on Apple's tiny 12-inch MacBook, be prepared to take issue with the new MacBook Pro. Unless our eyes deceive us, this new machine has the same wide, shallow chiclet keys as the love-it-or-hate-it 12-inch model.

Thin design

Why would the keys be thinner? And why, if you look closely, can you see the same kind of miniature, inset hinge for its lid? We can't say for sure, but seems pretty likely that the new MacBook Pro will be notably thinner (and perhaps lighter), too. Which in turn suggests that it might have fewer (and smaller) ports for your peripherals.

Again, all of this assumes that these images actually reflect the real MacBook Pro (Apple didn't respond to a request for comment) and weren't intentionally released by Apple to throw us off the scent. We'll know for sure in less than 48 hours. You can follow our liveblog here.

Personally, I'm just hoping a badass black MacBook will be in attendance.