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(Pocket-lint) - Apple will drop the Touch Bar from the upcoming MacBook Pro later this year, according to industry analysts.

Rumours have repeatedly suggested that the interactive bar, which was first introduced in 2016 and designed to replace the keyboard's F keys, is set to be dropped for the MacBook Pro 2021 lineup. Now, analysts at Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) have backed up the suggestions.

In a fresh report, DSCC points out that the Touch Bar is currently the third-largest user of OLED displays, with its sources indicating that Apple will "cancel the Touch Bar" in an upcoming MacBook Pro. 

"Touch Bars continue to be the #3 application with an 18% unit share and 1.2% revenue share in Q1’21," the report reads.

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"We expect Touch Bars to be exceeded by tablets when Apple starts the adoption of the 10.9” AMOLED iPad. Further, our sources suggest that Apple may cancel the Touch Bar in the future."

As we say, this hint isn't coming out of the blue - a report from Bloomberg and the reliable industry tipster Ming-Chi Kuo suggested as far back as January that the Touch Bar would be dropped in a return to physical keys.

Of course, it's also important to point out that this is still all unconfirmed information - and we won't know for sure until Apple releases the next generation of MacBook Pro devices later this year.

That could be as early as September, though with the company often splitting its events up throughout Q3 and Q4, it's more likely to be in late October or November. Last year's MacBook Pro M1 and MacBook Air M1, for example, were both unveiled in November 2020. 

So, in short, we still have a while to wait before we know of the Touch Bar's fate - even if the signs are pointing in a consistent direction.

Between now and the official announcement, though, we'll be sure to keep you up to date with all the rumours and whispers. 

Writing by Conor Allison. Originally published on 8 July 2021.