Apple's New MacBook Airs To Get Backlit Keyboards

New MacBook Airs are set to hit Apple Stores any day now. Preloaded with OS X Lion, the revamped ultraportable notebooks will feature the latest Intel Sandy Bridge processors and the new 10Gbps Thunderbolt connector port. But new reports suggest that's not all. This latest edition of the MacBook Air will also include the return of a backlit keyboard.

Apple's MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs have all had backlit keyboards until last October's redesigned MacBook Air launched without the feature. For many, having a backlit keyboard to illuminate keys when lighting is dim is simply a standard feature. Hence, Apple's omission of it, possibly for battery-saving reasons, was particularly glaring.

Insider sources are now saying that the feature will return to the new MacBook Airs, which may ship during the week of July 21. This is a week later than the originally rumored July 14, which was further supported by reports of overnight shifts on July 13 in preparation for the major launch that is believed to coincide with the launch of OS X Lion.

However, official requests for Lion app submissions were issued just yesterday to developers. It's not clear how many days Apple would need to review the apps for approval, but it could certainly take several days making a launch next week seem more likely.

[via Apple Insider]