Apple reveals all-new MacBook Air with a gorgeous 13-inch Retina display

Apple today introduced an all-new MacBook Air, bringing a stunning 13-inch Retina display, Touch ID, the latest processors and an even more portable design to the world’s most loved notebook. Delivering the all-day battery life it’s known for, the new MacBook Air is available in three gorgeous finishes — gold, space gray and silver. The most affordable Retina-display Mac ever also includes an Apple-designed keyboard, a spacious Force Touch trackpad, faster SSDs, wide stereo sound, the Apple T2 Security Chip and Thunderbolt 3, making the new MacBook Air the perfect notebook to take with you everywhere you go.

“The first MacBook Air revolutionized Mac with its thin wedge-shaped aluminum design. It forever changed the entire industry for portable computers and became the world’s most loved notebook,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, in a statement. “Redesigning MacBook Air started with a stunning Retina display and all-day battery life, and then we added Touch ID and the Apple T2 Security Chip, the latest processors, incredible sound, the third-generation keyboard and Force Touch trackpad, high speed Thunderbolt 3 ports, and of course macOS Mojave in a beautiful, thinner, lighter, all-aluminum design that a whole new generation of MacBook Air customers are going to love.”

Retina Display Comes to MacBook Air

The new MacBook Air features a stunning 13.3-inch Retina display with over 4 million pixels of resolution so text and images in macOS Mojave look sharp and stunning. And with 48 percent more color than the previous generation, images are more lifelike than ever. The new MacBook Air also includes a built-in FaceTime HD camera, which is perfect for Group FaceTime calls with friends and family, as well as a three microphone array for better sound quality when making calls and improved voice recognition for Siri.

MacBook Air is now more portable than ever and features a 100 percent recycled aluminum enclosure.
MacBook Air is now more portable than ever and features a 100 percent recycled aluminum enclosure.

 
Featuring Touch ID and Apple T2 Security Chip

MacBook Air now includes Touch ID — a fingerprint sensor built right into the keyboard — which allows you to conveniently and instantly unlock your MacBook Air, authenticate your identity, and make fast, simple and secure purchases using Apple Pay. To support Touch ID, MacBook Air comes with the Apple T2 Security Chip, which makes your notebook far more secure. The T2’s Secure Enclave protects Touch ID information and also ensures that software loaded during the boot process has not been tampered with. The T2 also features an SSD controller with on-the-fly data encryption for everything stored on the SSD. These allow MacBook Air to offer the most secure boot process and most secure storage of any notebook. T2 also features an always-on processor that enables “Hey Siri,” which lets you make requests to Siri with just your voice for things like finding files or opening an app.

Latest Generation Keyboard and Industry’s Best Trackpad

MacBook Air also features the third-generation Apple-designed keyboard for more precise and responsive typing. Each key is individually backlit using low-power LEDs for more accurate illumination. The new MacBook Air also includes the industry-best Force Touch trackpad, which delivers pressure-sensing capabilities and haptic feedback, and is 20 percent larger than on the previous generation MacBook Air, offering a quieter and more capable trackpad experience.

Fuller, More Immersive Audio Experience

With more advanced speakers and audio processing technology, MacBook Air delivers a higher quality audio experience and wide stereo playback that makes watching movies and listening to music more immersive than ever. The speakers are 25 percent louder with two times more bass than the previous generation for more dynamic range and fuller sound.

Performance to Power Your Daily Activities

The new MacBook Air features an 8th generation Intel Core i5 processor, Intel UHD Graphics and faster 2133 MHz system memory up to 16GB, delivering the performance you need for everyday activities like organizing your photos, browsing the web, creating presentations or viewing and editing videos. MacBook Air also features SSDs up to 1.5TB in capacity, that are up to 60 percent faster than the previous generation and make launching apps and opening files feel snappier and more responsive.

With faster memory and the latest processors and graphics, MacBook Air delivers the performance you need for organizing your photos, browsing the web and creating presentations.
With faster memory and the latest processors and graphics, MacBook Air delivers the performance you need for organizing your photos, browsing the web and creating presentations.

 
Thunderbolt 3, the Most Versatile Port Ever

MacBook Air now comes with two Thunderbolt 3 ports which allow you to charge your notebook, quickly transfer data via USB and Thunderbolt, output video in three formats and connect to a whole host of devices including external storage, docks for additional ports, 4K and 5K displays, and eGPUs for faster graphics. It’s the most versatile port ever. With over 700 Thunderbolt 3 devices in the ecosystem and growing, along with thousands of USB-C devices, MacBook Air allows you to take advantage of a whole new generation of accessories.

Thunderbolt 3 on the new MacBook Air lets you charge your notebook, quickly transfer data and connect to a whole host of devices all from the same port.
Thunderbolt 3 on the new MacBook Air lets you charge your notebook, quickly transfer data and connect to a whole host of devices all from the same port.

 
All-New, More Portable Design and The Greenest Mac Ever

The new MacBook Air packs all of these features in a new, distinct wedge-shaped design which is now even more compact and portable, and delivers up to 12 hours of battery life during wireless web use and up to 13 hours of iTunes movie playback. Featuring a significantly smaller footprint, the new MacBook Air takes up 17 percent less volume, is 10 percent thinner measuring just .61 inches at its thickest point, and at just 2.75 pounds is a quarter pound lighter than the previous generation.

In addition, the new MacBook Air enclosure is made from a custom, Apple-designed aluminum alloy that enables the use of 100 percent recycled aluminum for the first time, which has the same strength, durability and beautiful finish as the aluminum in all Apple products. Using this custom aluminum alloy helps reduce MacBook Air’s carbon footprint by nearly 50 percent, making it the greenest Mac ever.

Radeon Pro Vega Graphics Coming to MacBook Pro Next Month

Apple also today announced new MacBook Pro graphics options that will bring powerful Radeon Pro Vega graphics to MacBook Pro for the first time. These new graphics options deliver up to 60 percent faster graphics performance for the most demanding video editing, 3D design and rendering workloads. The new graphics configuration option for MacBook Pro will be available to order on apple.com and in Apple retail stores and through Apple Authorized Resellers starting Wednesday, November 14.

macOS Mojave

All new Macs come with macOS Mojave, the latest version of the world’s most advanced desktop operating system, with new features inspired by pros but designed for everyone. In macOS Mojave, a new Dark Mode transforms the desktop with a dramatic new look that puts the focus on user content. The new Stacks feature organizes messy desktops by automatically stacking files into neat groups. Familiar iOS apps, including News, Stocks, Voice Memos and Home, are now available on the Mac for the first time. FaceTime now adds support for group calling, and the Mac App Store gets a full redesign featuring rich editorial content and the addition of apps from top developers, including Microsoft and Adobe.

Pricing and Availability

Starting at $1,199, the new MacBook Air is available to order today on apple.com. It will be available in Apple retail stores and through Apple Authorized Resellers starting Wednesday, November 7. Additional technical specifications, configure-to-order options and accessories are available online at apple.com/mac.

Source: Apple Inc.

MacDailyNews Take: We max’ed out the new MacBook Air to see how much that costs:

• 1.6GHz dual‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
• Retina display
• 16GB 2133MHz LPDDR3 memory
• 1.5TB SSD storage
• Intel UHD Graphics 617
• Touch ID
• Force Touch trackpad
• Two Thunderbolt 3 ports

$2,599.

36 Comments

      1. I think this new MBA is poor value. The new MBA uses Intel’s 5w Y-series 1.6Ghz dual-core processor. The old MBA used a 15W U-series processor which could be had from 1.8Ghz up to 2.2Ghz dual-core speed, meaning it was much faster. This new MBA is essentially a 13″ rMB

        The only reason Apple kept the MBA name was the strength of the branding, nothing more. The true successor to the MBA is the 13″ base MBP without Touch Bar which uses a 2.3Ghz 15W Intel CPU and much faster Intel Iris Graphics.

        As of now, one can buy a MS Surface Laptop 2 that has 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD, Retina Display, Touch Screen, and 15W quad-core Intel CPU for $999. It is much faster and $200 cheaper, Windows 10 be damned.

    1. Base model with an i5 is $1,119. You only get to $2,599 by maxing out everything and most of that increased cost comes from adding a 1.5 terabyte SSD.

      I would get the base model or maybe the 256 GB model, and just add external drives as needed.

      What you should say is $2,599 for a 1.5 terabyte SSD! Whether that’s lame or not is up to you. Quality SSDs in that size are not cheap.

        1. The new MacBook Air is not a 2K PC. It is a $1,119 PC. You are mistaken.

          The proper analogy is buying a lower cost sedan and having the option to put a huge trunk in it (the 1.5 terabyte SSD).

            1. It’s a $1,119 PC with storage options that raise the price to as much as $2,599. A 2K PC is one that starts at 2K for just the base model PC. You are wrong.

            2. The only laptops Apple makes that are legitimate 2K PCs are the 15 inch MacBook Pro base model and up which all have 4 core and 6 core i7s and i9s. The MacBooks under 2K have i5s.

            3. Wait a minute… the $2600 MacBook to which the article refers isn’t a legitimate $2K PC? I agree! Folks don’t pay $2K for it, unless you’re doing so for the team.

            4. I’m afraid it is you who is peddling alternative facts. The PC part is the engine of the computer, not the storage you can add to it. Why not say the MacBook Air is a 10K computer because I can spend that much on accessories, displays, etc that I add to it? Extra storage is just an internal accessory. The laptops Apple sells that are legitimate $2,000 PCs do come with i7s or better.

            5. I’ll tell you why… it’s not upgradable. If I’m selling alternative facts, then MDN just published alternative facts. Argue with them, or Apple, or better yet… yourself.

            6. Not sure why I’m bothering to wade in here but whoever the other commenter is, they’re right. Even taking your side of the argument, almost all the configurations of the new MacBook Air will end up under 2K. It isn’t a 2K PC even using your argument. There’s only one configuration of the new MacBook Pro that puts it over 2K. I would bet almost no one buys that configuration.

            7. Sigh. You can’t admit when you’ve made even the tiniest mistake can you? That borders on a mental health issue.

              “Yes Sir! It is tha one configuration that I’m referring to, it has an i5, costs $2,600”

              Using your own argument almost every MacBook Air that will be sold is not lame because 99 percent of the configurations will be well under $2,000. It is possible Apple won’t sell any of the Air model in that maxed out configuration.

              That’s an important distinction that you have admitted. MacBook Air is the model. The 1.5 TB SSD is a configuration of that computer model. The MacBook Air ASP is going to be well under $2,000. It is not a 2K computer model. There just happens to be one configuration that bumps it up to $2,599. If the model series ASP was 2K or higher I could agree with you. It is not. Virtually all MacBook Air computers sold will be well under 2K. You’re living in an alternate reality if you think otherwise.

            8. It’s not the first time they shipped a $2K PC with an i5. Not even close. But even so, I was commenting on the model MDN quoted. Not my fault it’s lame.

            9. Now you’re changing your argument to “It’s not the first time they shipped a $2K PC with an i5.”

              Are you that upset by making such a small mistake that you have to change your argument to avoid being wrong? You need help.

              By the way, the article says “Starting at $1,199, the new MacBook Air is available to order today on apple.com.”

              That’s the model. A single configuration takes you over 2K. There is no sane reality where the MacBook Air is a two thousand dollar computer.

              That’s it for me. I regret engaging you at all.

            10. I made no mistake. I accurately referenced and was specific to what I was speaking about. Really, you have no leg to stand on to which to disagree.

      1. One of the real issues is the 1.5 TB drive. It’s $1,000 above and beyond the 256. Installations are running about $350-$400 per TB for TB or larger drives, consumer grade SSDs are running about $200-$250 per TB for TB or larger drives. Apple charging $1,000 for 1.5 TB IN PLACE OF THE 256 GB drive is truly asinine. Apple’s cost on that drive is likely less than $300. The delta cost for Apple from the 256 GB drive is likely less than $250 and may be less than $200.

        That’s a 70% to 80% gross margin for any sale with the 1.5 TB drive. That cannot be justified. It’s just Apple gouging.

  1. I don’t get this at all. After all this time, this is the best Apple can do?

    What precisely would prompt anyone to buy the 2018 MacBook Air over a 13″ touchbarfree MacBook Pro?

    For only $100 more, the MBP offers a better display, better GPU, better CPU, in a more durable package that only weighs a whopping 123 grams more. That’s about the weight of your $30 Lightning-to-USB-C adapter cable that you need to buy to sync or charge your iPhone.

    The air is tapered and comes in pink, so there is that. Timmy must have a fanboy club pushing hard for those critical things. Apple claims much more battery life for the Air HOWEVER it has a smaller battery so if you really are working your processors, YMMV, and with half the power in the Air’s charger, it takes longer to recharge. Real world battery life isn’t exactly Apple’s strong point.

    So despite lack of technical advancement or a significantly superior price, I am sure Apple will sell truckloads of these things. Don’t forget to go to OWC to get your Thunderbolt docks, folks.

    1. Oh one more thing: somebody remind Apple that this is 2008. Why release a new model using Bluetooth 4.2, a standard that was released 12/2014?

      Bluetooth 5 has been out since June 2016 and Apple implemented it on all its iPhones with great urgency. Macs still aren’t getting the love.

    2. It’s a decent update but I don’t think it makes sense in the current lineup either.

      But it Would make sense if they do some of the following:
      Cancel the No Touch Bar MBP13
      Cancel the Macbook ( I don’t see that one happening )
      Eventually lower the price on this MBA13

      I could see where the manufacturing costs of this MBA13 are lower than the MB12

      1. How about dropping the 12” MacBook and the Air altogether and pumping up volume production of the current 13” MacBook Pro. Then shock the world, drop the price €200 and remove the Pro label. Apple wouldn’t be able to keep up with demand. Apple would have a logical simple laptop lineup again. Critics would wonder if Apple finally listened to their customers. If Apple then introduced a thick totally user configurable 17” MacBook Pro with the features pros want, people would actually believe the Apple hype and line up to get new Macs again.

        Sorry, I dozed off during Cooks speech. Someone else snoring must have woke me out of a great Mac dream.

  2. $1,199 should get you a 256 GB SSD. Apple should not be selling any Macs with 128 GB SSDs in (almost) 2019. Instead, you have to pay $200 more to go from 128 GB to 256 GB. That deflates my Apple cheer balloon, but fast.

    1. In the end, how valuable is OSX to you? (MacOS to the obedient ones)

      Frankly, the hassle of Apple as sole hardware supplier negates the benefit. I will keep my 2013 Trashcan, and that’s it.

      1. Your question should read “how valuable is your time to you?”

        OSX is seriously more productive by a huge margin over alternatives. It is easier to work faster, spend less time fussing with your computer, and get more done.

        If you are willing to trade your time to adhere to your principles that’s a choice you get to make.

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