The MacBook Air, once the 'world's thinnest notebook,' is now one of the thickest laptops Apple sells

Photo: Brian Kersey/Getty Images

In January 2008, Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled the very first MacBook Air, a three-pound laptop it was proud to proclaim “the world’s thinnest notebook.”

Almost a decade later, the MacBook Air is now one of the thickest laptops in Apple’s lineup.

It’s true: According to Apple’s website, only the older MacBook Pro — both the 13- and 15-inch models — is thicker than the MacBook Air. All other laptops, including the 12-inch MacBook and even the new MacBook Pro models unveiled last year, are thinner.

Here are all the laptops Apple sells, arranged from thickest to thinnest:

  • MacBook Pro (older 13- and 15-inch models) – 0.71 inches thick
  • MacBook Air (13-inch) – 0.68 inches thick
  • MacBook Pro (new 15-inch model) – 0.61 inches thick
  • MacBook Pro (both new 13-inch models) – 0.59 inches thick
  • MacBook (12-inch) – 0.52 inches thick

Even though the MacBook Air can no longer be advertised as the “world’s thinnest notebook” — or even the thinnest notebook Apple sells — it is still one of the lightest Apple laptops you can buy. Here are all those laptops, arranged from heaviest to lightest:

  • MacBook Pro (older 15-inch model) – 4.49 pounds
  • MacBook Pro (new 15-inch model) – 4.02 pounds
  • MacBook Pro (older 13-inch model) – 3.48 pounds
  • MacBook Pro (both new 13-inch models) – 3.02 pounds
  • MacBook Air (13-inch) – 2.96 pounds
  • MacBook (12-inch) – 2.03 pounds

As you can see, the MacBook Air is only slightly lighter than the new 13-inch MacBook Pro models, but significantly heavier than last year’s 12-inch MacBook.

Based on the data above, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Apple dump the MacBook Air line after this year. The 12-inch MacBook seems to have supplanted the need for a MacBook Air, since that computer is both thinner and lighter than the Air. It would make sense, moving forward, for Apple to sell just two kinds of laptops: MacBooks (thin and portable for casual or mobile users), and MacBook Pros (for productivity and complex tasks).

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