First off, I love BetterTouchTool on my MacBook Pro 13" 2019. I was holding my breath that Apple wouldn't discontinue the TouchBar yesterday during their MacBook Pro Refresh event, but it would seem that the days of the TouchBar are numbered. Since Apple backpedaled on their old design decisions and by their wording onstage, it seems that this decision is permanent, and the lack of availability of the TouchBar seems to be set in stone for future SKUs. I could be 1000% wrong, but nonetheless, I cannot depend on a multibillion-trillion company to make the design decisions that perfectly align with my workflow.
I don't know how I'll get work done again without it. Something about gliding my finger along the top of my keyboard to access keyboard shortcuts I made myself without requiring external peripherals is something that the Elgato Stream Deck, Loupdeck, or any other programmable macro pad can't touch.
Out of grief, I did some Googling late last night and came across these products:
Touch Bar Simulator: https://sindresorhus.com/touch-bar-simulator/
Touch Bar for your old MacBook: https://www.producthunt.com/posts/touchbar-for-your-old-macbook
It would seem that the short-term solution would be to use either one of these programs with your iPad externally if you were to purchase an M1 Pro/Max device, or if you have a regular desktop Mac since none of those have TouchBars.
What about a long-term solution? It would seem that it is inevitable that Apple will end software support one day for all TouchBar MacBooks one day, and while our computers won't spontaneously combust, they won't be able to run the latest macOS, assuming that they live that long to begin with. Both Touch Bar Simulator and Touch Bar for your old MacBook seem to rely on built-in TouchBar functionality found in MacOS, and it is not out of the realm of possibility for the TouchBar functionality to be discontinued right after TouchBar Macs are no longer supported by MacOS. Maybe we could start development on BetterTouchTool for something like Raspberry Pi so that we can still use BetterTouchTool, albeit it would be a bit more clunky than a built-in TouchBar.
Is this something that we can even make to begin with without threats of legal action from Apple? Would love your guys' thoughts.