Phil Schiller: 32GB RAM On MacBook Pro Would Have Compromised Design And Battery Life [Video]


Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller responded to a query on why the revamped MacBook Pro's RAM is maxed out at 16GB, citing more RAM would have compromised the MacBook Pro's design and would have had a detrimental effect on its battery life.

The latest iteration of the MacBook Pro uses a low power version of DDR3 RAM called LPDDR3E that is maxed out at 16GB. According to Schiller, putting in more than 16GB of fast RAM into the new MacBook Pro would have required a system that will consume more power and would not be efficient for a notebook.

It's not all about the battery

Ben Slaney published a detailed breakdown on MacDaddy regarding the MacBook Pro's RAM limitation. The report prompted Schiller to respond wherein he said that aside from battery concerns, the design with a 32GB memory would require DDR memory that is not low-powered. He added that it would have also required a different logic board, which might reduce space. Furthermore, he said both factors would reduce battery life.

Power over performance

Slaney detailed that the new Macbook Pro's could have switched using DDR4 RAM to accommodate 32GB, but the problem is, the low power variant LPDDR4 is not supported by the new Intel processors used in the MacBook Pro 2016 models, MacRumors reported. Even if it were possible, putting in 32GB of RAM would have increased power consumption by 20 percent up to 30 percent, as opposed to the current RAM setup that uses only 10 percent of power.

Keeping it cool

Moreover, the new MacBook Pro was designed with a new thermal architecture to keep Intel Skylake chips and AMD's Radeon GPU and other components cool. Doubling RAM would have contributed to adding heat as more work is passed on the CPU and GPU.

Given this stance, average users will feel less constrained by MacBook Pro's RAM limit; however, industry professionals aiming to utilize the MacBook Pro in their line of work would feel the pinch of working with a 16GB RAM machine. Undoubtedly, many are disappointed that Apple has not offered customers an option to choose models based on battery life over better performance.

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