"What would happen if a MacBook met an iPad?" Steve Jobs asked, with the instant-on, solid-state storage, amazing battery and standby time and thin & light build from the tablet crossing over to an ultraportable. The result is the new MacBook Air, "one of the most amazing things we've ever created" according to Jobs: an ultraportable measuring 0.68-inches at its thickest and 0.11-inches at its thinnest. Like the existing Air it has a 13.3-inch LED backlit display, this time running at 1440 x 900.
It uses a complete unibody construction, which includes the screen surround. The keyboard is full-sized, as is the trackpad. The pixel density of the display is actually higher than the 15-inch MacBook Pro. The CPU is a Core 2 Duo, paired with an NVIDIA GeForce 320M GPU.
What you don't get is an optical drive or a hard-drive - instead the new MacBook Air uses an SSD. It's up to 2x faster than a hard-drive, 90-percent smaller and lighter, and is more reliable. Battery life is up to 7hrs of wireless web browsing, or up to 30 days of standby - under the same tests, Jobs says, the previous MacBook Air would only manage 5hrs of browsing.
Ports include a USB 2.0 on both sides, together with Mini DisplayPort, headphones and an SD card slot; there's also a webcam. Stereo speakers are also added.
The 13.3-inch MacBook Air comes in a choice of 128GB or 256GB sizes, both with 2GB of RAM and a 1.86GHz Core 2 Duo processor, priced at $1,299 and $1,599 respectively. Both will be available starting today, as will the new 11.6-inch MacBook Air version.
Apple Reinvents Notebooks With New MacBook Air
CUPERTINO, California—October 20, 2010—Apple® today unveiled an all new MacBook Air®, the first of a next generation of notebooks which will replace mechanical hard disks and optical drives with Internet services and solid state flash storage. These next generation notebooks are:
faster—solid state flash storage is up to twice as fast as hard drive storage
more reliable—hard drive crashes are eliminated
lighter and smaller—solid state flash storage is up to 90 percent smaller and lighter than hard drives
Available in 11-inch and 13-inch models and weighing as little as 2.3 pounds, the new MacBook Air is Apple’s lightest and most portable notebook ever. MacBook Air uses the same solid state storage technology as iPad™ to deliver instant-on responsiveness, up to seven hours of battery life and up to 30 days of standby time.* Starting at $999, the affordable MacBook Air defines the next generation of MacBooks.
“MacBook Air is the first of a new generation of notebooks that leaves behind mechanical rotating storage in favor of solid state flash storage,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We’ve taken what we have learned with the iPad—solid state storage, instant-on, amazing battery standby time, miniaturization and lightweight construction, to create the new MacBook Air. With its amazing responsiveness and mobility, it will change the way we think about notebooks.”
With its precision aluminum unibody enclosure, the new MacBook Air measures an incredibly thin 0.11-inches at its thinnest point and 0.68-inches at its thickest, and weighs just 2.3 pounds for the 11-inch model and 2.9 pounds for the 13-inch. Like iPad, MacBook Air was designed from the ground up to use flash storage exclusively. Apple’s custom-designed flash storage is 90 percent smaller and lighter than a conventional notebook hard drive, contributing to MacBook Air’s mobile, featherweight design. MacBook Air’s flash storage also provides faster data access and is more reliable than notebook hard drives due to its solid state design.
MacBook Air features a full-sized keyboard for typing comfort and productivity, as well as the highly acclaimed glass Multi-Touch™ trackpad found on Apple’s MacBook® Pro, so you can scroll through web sites, flip through photos, and resize or rotate images all from the trackpad. The built-in FaceTime® camera, mic and stereo speakers are perfect for video calls with iPhone® 4, iPod touch®** and other Macs.
Flash storage combined with power-efficient Intel Core 2 Duo processors and NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics delivers an ideal balance of mobility, battery life and performance. MacBook Air features an 11.6-inch or 13.3-inch high-resolution LED-backlit display and Mini DisplayPort to connect your 27-inch Apple LED Cinema Display, projector or HD TV. Ultra-fast 802.11n Wi-Fi networking allows you to download music and movies from iTunes®, back up data to Time Capsule® and store or share files with MobileMe℠ and iDisk®. MacBook Air includes Bluetooth 2.1+EDR for wireless peripherals and two USB ports making it easy to sync and charge an iPad, iPhone or iPod® while using another device. The 13-inch MacBook Air also includes an SD card slot.
Apple makes the industry’s greenest notebooks and the MacBook Air is the latest Mac® notebook to achieve EPEAT Gold status and meet Energy Star 5.0 requirements.*** Each unibody enclosure is made of highly recyclable aluminum and comes standard with energy efficient LED-backlit displays that are mercury-free and made with arsenic-free glass. Mac notebooks contain no brominated flame retardants, are PVC-free and are constructed of recyclable materials.
Apple uses advanced chemistry and Adaptive Charging technology to create a MacBook Air battery that delivers up to seven hours of wireless productivity on a single charge and up to 1,000 recharges.**** The built-in battery design results in less waste, and depleted MacBook Air batteries can be replaced for $129, which includes installation and disposal of your old battery in an environmentally responsible manner.
Every Mac comes with Mac OS® X Snow Leopard®, the world’s most advanced operating system, and iLife®, Apple’s innovative suite of applications for creating and sharing great photos, movies and music. Snow Leopard builds on more than a decade of innovation and includes multiple features for portable computing such as Multi-Touch navigation, advanced wireless networking, easy file sharing, automated data backup and intelligent power management. The new iLife ’11 features iPhoto® with stunning full screen views for browsing, editing and sharing photos; iMovie® with powerful easy-to-use tools to transform home videos into fun theatrical trailers; and GarageBand® with new ways to improve your playing and create great sounding songs.
Pricing & Availability
The 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Air are immediately available through the Apple Store® (www.apple.com), Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers. The 1.4 GHz 11-inch MacBook Air with 2GB of memory and 64GB of flash storage starts at a suggested retail price of $999 (US) with a 128GB model for $1,199 (US). The 1.86 GHz 13-inch MacBook Air with 2GB of memory and 128GB of flash storage starts at a suggested retail price of $1,299 (US) with a 256GB model for $1,599 (US). Configure-to-order options and accessories include faster processors, 4GB of memory, MacBook Air SuperDrive® and a USB Ethernet Adapter.
Additional technical specifications and configure-to-order options and accessories are available online at www.apple.com/macbookair.
*Battery life and standby time vary by use and configuration. See www.apple.com/batteries for more information.
**iOS 4.1 required.
***EPEAT is an independent organization that helps customers compare the environmental performance of notebooks and desktops. Products meeting all of the 23 required criteria and at least 75 percent of the optional criteria are recognized as EPEAT Gold products. The EPEAT program was conceived by the US EPA and is based on IEEE 1680 standard for Environmental Assessment of Personal Computer Products. For more information visit www.epeat.net.
****A properly maintained MacBook Air battery is designed to retain 80 percent or more of its original capacity during a lifespan of up to 1,000 recharge cycles. Battery life and charge cycles vary by use and settings. For more information visit www.apple.com/batteries.
Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork, and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple is reinventing the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and has recently introduced its magical iPad which is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices.