MacBook Pro 13-Inch: Here Are Some Better Laptops [Opinion]

Apple is no longer the best laptop maker on the block.

Dell XPS 13 MacBook Pro
Daryl Deino

Apple is no longer the best laptop maker on the block.

Apple used to be ahead of the curve when it came to mid-range laptops. For example, 2012’s 13-inch MacBook Pro was the first to offer a Retina screen and outperformed what were known as “ultrabooks” on the PC side. However, the MacBook Pro has lost its lead over the marketplace, especially after releasing the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar in late 2016.

Gizmodo described the Touch Bar on the new MacBook Pro as a gimmick.

“It’s somewhat useful, but it’s still so undersupported for apps beyond Apple’s that, at least for right now, the Touch Bar is not reason enough to get a new MacBook Pro.”

Luckily, there are several alternatives to the 13-inch MacBook Pro. Here are some MacBook Pro killers:

Dell XPS 13 9370 (2018 Version)

The new XPS 13 is a masterpiece of a laptop. The version that comes with the 8th-gen Intel Core i7 processor (the MacBook Pro only has a 7th-gen processor), 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD can be purchased as low as $1,299. As the Inquisitr pointed out in late-February, the XPS 13 9370 is a pure laptop, and it doesn’t pretend to be anything else. It has a beautiful screen, great battery life, and a great keyboard.

Dell’s new XPS 13 is the biggest upgrade the device has seen since being introduced in early 2015. Unfortunately, to make it more portable, Dell took out all the USB-A ports (Apple did the same with the MacBook Pro), but you get three powerful Thunderbolt 3 ports. Once you look at the XPS 13, it’s hard to get your eyes to move away.

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Surface Book 2
The Surface Book 2 offers incredible battery life. Daryl Deino

There are many who have asked for a MacBook Pro that can be used as a tablet. The Surface Book 2 fulfills the wish. The version of Microsoft’s hybrid that has an 8th-gen Intel Core i7 processor, a discreet NVIDIA GPU, 8GB RAM, and a 256GB SSD can be purchased as low as $1,799. You can pay a little more for 16GB of RAM, but most users won’t need it.

While the Surface Book 2 may be somewhat heavy compared to other ultraportable laptops, it makes space for a large battery that offers better life than any laptop, including all versions of the new MacBook Pro. Unlike the MacBook Pro, the Surface Book 2 screen can be detached, and you can write on the screen using the Surface Pen. Luckily, Microsoft has dealt with all the major bugs that plagued the first version of the Surface Book.

HP Spectre x360 13 (2018)

HP has really upped their game in the past couple years, and the latest Spectre x360 13 proves this. For $1,400, you can a beautiful hybrid laptop with a 4K screen, a an 8th-gen Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD.

Tech Radar gives the Spectre x360 four-and-a-half stars.

“The HP Spectre x360 is one fine-looking laptop. It’s smooth appearance with polished highlights practically calls you to it. The fingerprint sensor tucked onto the side is convenient for use in any mode, and the stylus is included in the box.”

In terms of design, the HP Spectre 360 is more flashy than the MacBook Pro or just about any other laptop. However, there have been some complaints that the battery life isn’t as good as it should be.

Other Possibilities

Those who don’t mind a smaller 12.3-inch screen may want to take a look at the 2017 Surface Pro. It’s more of a tablet hybrid, whereas the MacBook Pro is a pure laptop. If you want a small and powerful device to take handwritten notes on in addition to using as a regular laptop, it’s worth looking at the latest version of the Surface Pro, which has come down in price a lot since it was first released in June of 2017.