Apple’s astonishing 11-inch MacBook Air: Blazing fast, unbelievably light and thin, a breakthrough

Apple Online Store“Apple’s new 11-inch MacBook Air is astonishing. It’s unbelievable. It’s the most exciting consumer PC that’s come out for years. It’s a netbook, but it’s not a PoS. It’s blazing fast. It’s unbelievably light and thin. It’s beautifully made. Really beautifully made,” Leander Kahney reports for Cult of Mac.

“It has an older CPU and skimpy RAM, but it is NOT underpowered. For users like me, who aren’t editing Hollywood movies, it’s more than adequate. Heck, it’s a huge leap forward,” Kahney reports. “Like Jobs said at the launch, this is the future of notebooks. Extremely thin and light, yet capable of running dozens of applications without bogging down. There are compromises, of course, but the most important things — portability, durability and functionality — are very much in place.”

“Last year, I bought a 13-inch MacBook Pro, which I loved. But in comparison to the 11-inch Air, it looks like a bloated old relic,” Kahney reports. “It’s positively primitive: a porky throwback to a previous computing era.”

Kahney reports, “I know what you’re thinking, ‘Cult of Mac. This guy’s a zealot. He’ll buy anything Steve Jobs tells him too.’ I admit, I’m a fan. But the Air is important. It’s different. It’s right up there with the iPad and the iPhone. This is a breakthrough product.”

There’s much more in the full article, including many original photos, here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Brawndo Drinker” for the heads up.]

55 Comments

  1. I have a Core2 Dou MBP from Mid 2007 (2.4 to be precise) and have no problems what so ever with it’s power and usability. It is the only computer we have in our house and it handles all our projects without complaint.

  2. The first Air was the prototype for the uniebody and SSD. SJ said the new MBAs are the future, where they want to go; prototype.  The new iMacs can have a SSD with a hard drive.  What if they put the new MBA built in drives in standard and give you a choice of hard drives.  That way they could have instance on, and use the SSD for virtual memory and the apps or docs that are used the most.  The Mini could have the solid state with a HD for the server.  This could give the desktops some real power, and distinction in that market.  Apple could use cheeper, more proven processors with incredible results. 

  3. The first Air was the prototype for the uniebody and SSD. SJ said the new MBAs are the future, where they want to go; prototype.  The new iMacs can have a SSD with a hard drive.  What if they put the new MBA built in drives in standard and give you a choice of hard drives.  That way they could have instance on, and use the SSD for virtual memory and the apps or docs that are used the most.  The Mini could have the solid state with a HD for the server.  This could give the desktops some real power, and distinction in that market.  Apple could use cheeper, more proven processors with incredible results. 

  4. I would not call the MBA a netbook; to do so is to miss the true essence of the device and the slot it occupies in the Apple notebook line of products. With its full size keyboard, and full powered Core 2 Duo processors, Nvidia graphics, high resolution screen, and 2GB of RAM, this device is all notebook computer. When Steve J said Apple would never build a netbook computer, he was referring to those cheap plastic stuff, with super cramped keyboards, underpowered processors, with displays that require you to squint your eyes to view. However I understand the exuberance of the author of the article; the MBA is so small, thin, and light, yet it packs all that power giving you the best of both worlds, i.e. the size and weight of a netbook computer yet the power, high res screen quality, and the full size keyboard of a notebook. For the price of the quality of the device, the new MBA is actually a bargain. But sigh, the appreciation of quality is lost on many. I do agree with author though, until the next update to the MBP, “It’s the most exciting consumer PC that’s come out for years”.

  5. I would not call the MBA a netbook; to do so is to miss the true essence of the device and the slot it occupies in the Apple notebook line of products. With its full size keyboard, and full powered Core 2 Duo processors, Nvidia graphics, high resolution screen, and 2GB of RAM, this device is all notebook computer. When Steve J said Apple would never build a netbook computer, he was referring to those cheap plastic stuff, with super cramped keyboards, underpowered processors, with displays that require you to squint your eyes to view. However I understand the exuberance of the author of the article; the MBA is so small, thin, and light, yet it packs all that power giving you the best of both worlds, i.e. the size and weight of a netbook computer yet the power, high res screen quality, and the full size keyboard of a notebook. For the price of the quality of the device, the new MBA is actually a bargain. But sigh, the appreciation of quality is lost on many. I do agree with author though, until the next update to the MBP, “It’s the most exciting consumer PC that’s come out for years”.

  6. All new Mac’s don’t come with Flash installed because Adobe has a new self updater that automatically updates Flash.

    It’s similar to that background auto updater that’s included with Google Earth. Or the one that’s included when one installs iTunes on Windows.

    On Windows there is a Java self updater, soon Java too will have a self updater for OS X when Apple drops their self support version of Java.

    I quite frankly don’t like third party code running as root, as vulnerabilities in their code allow root access to OS X. Not only that there is a privacy issue as well. There is no ax of hardware customer disapproval hanging over Adobe’s, Oracle’s, or Google’s head like there is with Apple.

    However with all the computer ignorants out there not updating their plug-ins in a timely fashion has allowed a fertile exploitive environment to exist.

    Of course now the problem will be is if a vulnerability is found in the root installed auto-updater’s, everyone is vulnerable via root, which is more severe than by just by a user level browser plug-in.

    By shipping new Mac’s without plug-ins installed, will insure computer ignorants machines are safe regardless, although feature restricted. Computer ignorants don’t even know how to back up their files, so perhaps it’s best for them to run their machines with as little possible exploit angle as possible.

    It used to be we just had to trust Apple with anything root level, but now we got to trust Google, Oracle, Microsoft, Adobe and so on. The more chiefs in the root level kitchen, the more possibility for error and abuse of that trust. This is what is causing the problem on Windows, too much other garbage running as root.

  7. All new Mac’s don’t come with Flash installed because Adobe has a new self updater that automatically updates Flash.

    It’s similar to that background auto updater that’s included with Google Earth. Or the one that’s included when one installs iTunes on Windows.

    On Windows there is a Java self updater, soon Java too will have a self updater for OS X when Apple drops their self support version of Java.

    I quite frankly don’t like third party code running as root, as vulnerabilities in their code allow root access to OS X. Not only that there is a privacy issue as well. There is no ax of hardware customer disapproval hanging over Adobe’s, Oracle’s, or Google’s head like there is with Apple.

    However with all the computer ignorants out there not updating their plug-ins in a timely fashion has allowed a fertile exploitive environment to exist.

    Of course now the problem will be is if a vulnerability is found in the root installed auto-updater’s, everyone is vulnerable via root, which is more severe than by just by a user level browser plug-in.

    By shipping new Mac’s without plug-ins installed, will insure computer ignorants machines are safe regardless, although feature restricted. Computer ignorants don’t even know how to back up their files, so perhaps it’s best for them to run their machines with as little possible exploit angle as possible.

    It used to be we just had to trust Apple with anything root level, but now we got to trust Google, Oracle, Microsoft, Adobe and so on. The more chiefs in the root level kitchen, the more possibility for error and abuse of that trust. This is what is causing the problem on Windows, too much other garbage running as root.

  8. “When Steve J said Apple would never build a netbook computer, he was referring to those cheap plastic stuff, with super cramped keyboards, underpowered processors, with displays that require you to squint your eyes to view.”

    Processor wise the dual core 11″ MBA is not a 10″ netbook as most netbooks have a light weight single core Atom processor with integrated graphics and a more cost effective and more capacity hard drive.

    However screen real estate size the two are very nearly the same, thus so the keyboard is similar in size on both. So super cramped keyboard and squinting is going to occur on the 11″ MBA as well.

    The next batch of netbooks coming are going to have a low powered dual core Atom type processors. Also the new iPads coming in January are going to have dual core A4’s.

    My all black plastic case Ubuntu HP netbook cost only $290, I do have to move it closer to my chest when it’s on my lap. But it’s a netbook, it’s not my beastly 15″ $4000 MacBook Pro.

    For most office type, net type uses, even watching Hulu or surfing at unknown wifi spots, netbooks with a secure OS like Ubuntu fits the bill just fine.

  9. “When Steve J said Apple would never build a netbook computer, he was referring to those cheap plastic stuff, with super cramped keyboards, underpowered processors, with displays that require you to squint your eyes to view.”

    Processor wise the dual core 11″ MBA is not a 10″ netbook as most netbooks have a light weight single core Atom processor with integrated graphics and a more cost effective and more capacity hard drive.

    However screen real estate size the two are very nearly the same, thus so the keyboard is similar in size on both. So super cramped keyboard and squinting is going to occur on the 11″ MBA as well.

    The next batch of netbooks coming are going to have a low powered dual core Atom type processors. Also the new iPads coming in January are going to have dual core A4’s.

    My all black plastic case Ubuntu HP netbook cost only $290, I do have to move it closer to my chest when it’s on my lap. But it’s a netbook, it’s not my beastly 15″ $4000 MacBook Pro.

    For most office type, net type uses, even watching Hulu or surfing at unknown wifi spots, netbooks with a secure OS like Ubuntu fits the bill just fine.

  10. it depends on how you call it. but 11.6 inch MBA is in the category of netbook. netbook is also ultra portable as well. why some people try to call it not as netbook? it’s netbook. go to wikipedia, see what the definition of netbook…..

  11. it depends on how you call it. but 11.6 inch MBA is in the category of netbook. netbook is also ultra portable as well. why some people try to call it not as netbook? it’s netbook. go to wikipedia, see what the definition of netbook…..

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