since they provide a seldom-used (but still used) function in a laptop with good WiFi.
Used an an awful lot by mobile pros who work with large files, or pros who configure networks. Maybe Apple should create a sku with a couple extra usb ports, a gigabit port, as thick as the 2011 mbp with the extra space used for battery. They could call it "Macbook Pro".
They can renamed the current macbook pro, macbook Air+
In the end, it actually provides more flexibility for individual needs,
Fewer options is greater freedoms! Taking things out provides more flexibility! What double think! What newspeak! Much wow!
without overly-complicating base designs or unnecessarily increasing hardware costs.
Nobody buying a $2500 pro laptop in 2016 is concerned about the cost of a few ports. Indeed that's what the $2500 is for... because we want it to have all these capabilities built in, and we're willing to pay what ever it costs to get it.
It's reached the point where I'm considering buying a thunderbolt dock to keep in my laptop bag. Has all the ports I'll need, and I'm less likely to misplace or forget it. And its cheaper than the combined price of all the hubs, adapters, and dongles I currently need to carry around.
But you know what would be really cool... if they put some extra battery in the dock. And added a keyboard, screen, touchpad, CPU, SSD, and RAM. Then I could just carry around the dock, and not bother with a useless laptop. ;-)
Those Ethernet "Dongles" (as you call them)
A dongle is a piece of hardware that attaches to a computer and allows a piece of secured software to run. [...]
The term dongle has expanded beyond software protection to include any small device that plugs into the Universal Serial Bus (USB) or other computer port, regardless of what it does. These devices are usually used to provide some function that is not built in to the computer itself. This includes adding memory, supplying BluetoothÂ® and WiFiÂ® connections, and adding adapters so that other devices can be plugged in.