Apple is potentially gearing up to reveal an overhaul to its MacBook Air laptop during its keynote event expected to unveil the iPhone XS on September 12. This long-rumored MacBook Air 2018 has been hyped for a long time as a woefully overdue update.
Many outlets through which these rumors are leaking through fully expect this update to fully bring the MacBook Air brand into the modern era. However, some of these websites claim to have heard that the laptop will be affordable as well.
How will Apple achieve that critical balance, especially at a time when its ability to do so has been … clearly challenged when it comes to laptops – yet stronger than ever where tablets are concerned? Who knows, but what we do know is what we’d be most excited to see from the MacBook Air 2018, and we’ve broken it down to three wishes.
Amber Lake Intel Core processors
Although these processors were just-announced, they're already reportedly experiencing a shortage, which could affect whether we even see a MacBook Air 2018 announcement on September 12. However, they could well be the key to Apple’s super-thin laptop revival.
Intel’s latest 8th-generation Amber Lake processors are the follow-up to last year’s Intel Core Y series chips designed for ultra-thin laptops and tablets that do not use fans in their designs to cool themselves. This year, Intel claims that its chips will allow for laptop designs as thin as 7mm and as light as under 0.45kg (1 pound).
The latest MacBook, Apple’s thinnest laptop ever, is currently 13.21mm at its thickest point and weighs 0.92kg (2.03 pounds). Being able to use Intel’s latest processor then could have allowed Apple to develop a laptop worthy of the ‘Air’ name once again.
A sharper screen (but not too sharp)
This revision is most recently rumored to come housing one of Apple’s Retina displays, which would be a fantastic upgrade for the laptop. The 1,440 x 900 display was one of the chief most complaints about the MacBook Air – even when it first launched.
We would gladly take a Retina display, which an Amber Lake processor could certainly handle, but perhaps Apple should pump the brakes and stop at a simple 1080p display. This alone would already be a massive improvement upon the previous model, and help preserve that precious battery life. More importantly, going for no more than a Full HD display would help Apple maintain an affordable price point.
Given what we’ve heard is the goal of this laptop, a 1,920 x 1,080 (1080p) display is our most-wanted option from this would-be new MacBook Air. Besides, Apple already has a laptop with a super-sharp screen.
That ‘affordable’ price point
It’s been said in some reports that Apple is targeting a more approachable price point for this laptop, likely in keeping the spirit of the original product. The MacBook Air has traditionally been Apple’s most affordable laptop, so why buck this trend now?
However, we’ve been hearing conflicting reports regarding how this laptop will be priced as well as configured. We’ve heard that this laptop will simply revive the MacBook Air, but in a more premium presentation worthy of a four-figure price tag. But, we’ve also heard that Apple looks to keep the laptop at three figures with families and students in mind.
Regardless, we simply wish that Apple respects the MacBook Air legacy, making this laptop an approachable one for Apple fans.
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Joe Osborne is the Senior Technology Editor at Insider Inc. His role is to leads the technology coverage team for the Business Insider Shopping team, facilitating expert reviews, comprehensive buying guides, snap deals news and more. Previously, Joe was TechRadar's US computing editor, leading reviews of everything from gaming PCs to internal components and accessories. In his spare time, Joe is a renowned Dungeons and Dragons dungeon master – and arguably the nicest man in tech.