For years, I’ve been dying for a big upgrade to the MacBook Air.
While I still think the Air is the best overall laptop you can buy, it could be so much better. Its design hasn’t changed significantly since 2010, and it still lacks the sharp Retina display found on every other Apple gadget.
But after all these years, it doesn’t seem likely MacBook Air fans like me will get what their wish.
Instead, Apple is getting ready to radically redesign the MacBook Pro this fall, according to Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst with an excellent track record of predicting what Apple is working on. Kuo says the new MacBook will take design cues from the ultra-thin MacBook and have a secondary touchscreen for function keys and a fingerprint sensor.
That means we’re at the beginning of a significant shift in the MacBook lineup, and the new MacBook Pro will soon take over as the best laptop you can buy, finally fulfilling everything Air users like me have wanted for years.
Here’s what I think will happen:
The MacBook Air will stick around for now as the entry-level MacBook, starting at $899. I doubt we’ll see a major refresh to the Air ever again. It may get some internal improvements, but that will be it until it’s totally phased out.
The MacBook may be underpowered by today’s standards, but it will become Apple’s flagship laptop once it can match the Air’s specs in a couple more years. After that, say goodbye to the Air. Hopefully, Apple will be able to get the MacBook’s price down to $999 or less by then.
In the near term, the next MacBook Pro will end up being the perfect computer a lot of my fellow MacBook Air owners will end up buying. After all these years, the Air feels ancient compared to Apple’s sleek MacBooks with a sharp screen. The new Pro will be the only model that will have plenty of power plus a modern design.
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