How sexy can a laptop get? Apple seems hell bent on finding out with the MacBook Air, this time completely redesigned around the firm’s brand new M2 chip.
Announced just this morning via WWDC22 in Cupertino, California, the new M2, which takes the M1’s already impressive performance even further — will be fitted into the next-generation MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, making them two of the most efficient laptops in the market today.
Read on for what you can expect in this year’s new MacBook Air.
Faster, better, stronger
Apple has learnt plenty from its first stint in making M-series chips. The second generation is big on efficiency and performance, so much so that the new MacBook Air was completely redesigned around the M2, both inside and out.
Take for example the upgraded eight-core CPU, which has now been paired to a next-gen GPU that has up to 10 cores — two more than the M1. You’ll get 100GB/s of unified memory bandwidth and up to 24GB of fast unified memory here. In layman’s terms, the laptop can now handle larger and more complex workloads with ease, such as hardcore video editing.
Amateur and pro filmmakers will also appreciate the M2’s re-designed media engine and powerful ProRes video engine within, which allows the play back of more streams of 4K and 8K video than before. Those using Final Cut Pro will also find that performance is almost 40 percent faster than the previous generation’s, and up to 15 times faster for those who still haven’t converted to Apple’s silicon chip.
We’re not fat-shaming other laptops, but thinner is always better when it comes to a portable device you’ll be traversing the world – much less the island – with.
The new MacBook Air was redesigned to be as slim as possible from every angle, measuring at only 11.3mm thin and weighing only 1.2kg despite its solid all-aluminium body. Because the M2 is so efficient, Apple was able to integrate all its other components so efficiently that it shaved 20 percent off of its previous volume. That efficiency also allowed Apple the freedom to do away with a fan within, resulting in a lightweight and most importantly, silent laptop that won’t whir incessantly when you’re trying to think.
With the redesign also comes two new colours; besides Silver and Space Grey, the MacBook Air will also be offered in uber-chic Midnight and Starlight finishes.
MagSafe is back, baby
Nobody likes a flying laptop. Apple changed the game when it first introduced MagSafe charging to the 2006 MacBook Pro, but that ingenious feature was phased out upon the release of the fourth-generation MacBook Pro and its USB-C charging in 2016.
This year, every klutz can once again rejoice as the MagSafe will be resurrected on the new MacBook Air, which will no doubt protect millions of laptops around the world from death by cable. The magnetic charging point will also be accompanied by two Thunderbolt ports for a variety of accessories, a 3.5mm audio jack for those hardcore audiophile-approved headphones, and a Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and a Force Touch trackpack.
Screentime on steroids
A 13.6-inch Liquid Retina display awaits in the new MacBook Air, this time expanded closer to the sides and up around the camera to accommodate the menu bar.
The smaller bezel and larger screen gives you more room to enjoy Apple’s display in all its glory, especially since it’s now 25 percent brighter than before. It also supports a billion colours, so all your movies, photos, work, and videos are going to look even more vibrant and impressive.
Even with all the display upgrades, the MacBook Air is still power-efficient, and provides all-day battery – we’re talking up to 18 hours of video playback here.
Seamless video calls, finally
With a larger image sensor and more efficient pixels that provide better resolution and low-light performance, the 1080p FaceTime HD camera promises to be a gamechanger when it comes to video calls (read: you’ll look better).
There’s also going to be a new four-speaker sound system – sandwiched between the keyboard and display – that provides excellent audio on video calls. There’s also Spatial Audio and Dolby Atmos for immersive movie experiences on the go.
A three-mic array accompanies this upgrade to deliver better vocal clarity and cleaner audio too, so everyone can hear you loud and clear.
The all-new MacBook Air will be coming soon to the Apple Store online, the Apple Store app, Apple Store locations and Apple Authorised Resellers, and will retail starting at S$1,699, and S$1,549 for students. Additional technical specifications are available too.