Bringin’ It Back: Apple Reportedly Showing Renewed Interest in Matte Screen Options


Don’t get me wrong, I love my new 13-inch MacBook Pro. In many, many ways, it is far superior to any older computer I have lying around. I can’t get over how far Apple design and function has come. But I do have to admit to shifting and tilting the device around when I’m sitting on the couch with my window in the background. I suppose I could close the window, or rearrange my living room furniture, but I’d have much preferred just clicking a matte display option when buying my notebook. That option may reappear soon.

Or, I could’ve opted for the 17-inch MacBook Pro, which I’m sure is what Apple was hoping for, considering the $2,500 price tag. Sadly, I am not independently wealthy, nor do I have a job that justifies that kind of computer muscle. I just don’t like glare with my computing. Unlike some, I don’t find the MBP’s screen intolerable, just mildly annoying in certain lighting situations, but choice is still nice.

According to reports by AppleInsider, Apple is considering a reintroduction of matte screen options on machines other than the 17-inch MacBook Pro. This is according to “people who have proven familiar with the company’s plans.” Perhaps not the most reassuring of sources, but there is a lot of vocal support of such a move, so I wouldn’t be surprised if Apple was at least entertaining the thought. The company did, after all, reintroduce Firewire on the 13-inch MacBook (Pro) after much protest about its demise.

Professional users have even more reason to complain than I do, since the glossy screens and glare pose a serious problem when color and image accuracy are of paramount importance. I expect that any screen options Apple does introduce will also carry the $50 charge that currently attaches to the upgrade on the 17-inch model, but that’s nothing compared to the price of upgrading to the pricier model and still paying an extra $50.

I’m not saying the current screen is that big of a problem, but I can’t help but notice the difference between it and the screen on the 12-inch PowerBook I recently picked up as a hobby machine. Yes, everything appears more vivid, more rich, and just generally more impressive, but only in low-light situations. My home workstation is right next to a window, which is necessary to prevent me going completely stir-crazy, and the PowerBook looks a lot more at home there than the MBP does. Would I swap the screens if I could? I’d be mighty tempted, that’s for sure.


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