Apple’s New MacBook Air Is The Laptop I’ve Been Waiting For

MacBook meets iPad

I’ve never been a big fan of laptop computers, for the simple fact that they’ve always been too heavy to carry around on a daily basis, taking them everywhere I go.

But the new MacBook Air seems to finally be lightweight enough to carry around all the time, and cheap enough to justify buying as a secondary computer.

It seems to finally be the laptop I’ve been waiting for.

I haven’t had a chance to check out the new Air in person yet, but based on the specs, I think I’m going to buy one of the smaller, 11.6-inchers.

(I tried to impulse purchase one at my local Apple Store this afternoon, or at least try it in person, but apparently they won’t be in stock for 2 weeks.)

Most important: At 2.3 pounds, it’s less than half the weight of my previous laptop, the 2007-era plastic MacBook, and just 44% heavier than my iPad. This seems to be light enough to carry around in my backpack every day, as opposed to just days I think I’ll need it, or when I’m travelling on business.

Next-most important: At $999 — though I may buy a few of the available upgrades, such as more memory and a faster chip — it’s cheap enough to buy, knowing I might not be using it every day. (With 27-inch, quad-core iMacs at work and at home, the MacBook Air will only be used on-the-go, in conference rooms, etc.)

Why buy a MacBook Air when I already have an iPad? Because, as I laid out in my 100-day iPad review, I still can’t use my iPad for work, and it doesn’t look like I’ll be able to any time soon.

I need to be able to use multiple apps at the same time, a Firefox-based browser for Business Insider’s content management system, and other functions that work better on a computer than an iPad. And I need to type a lot, and I don’t really feel like dragging around a Bluetooth keyboard all the time. Even when the iPad 4.2 software update comes out next month, I don’t think the iPad is going to be a sufficient device for my work.

Does this mean I’ll be carrying around both my iPad and my MacBook Air every day? Probably not — seems like a waste. My hunch is that I’ll just leave my iPad at home now, and use the Air at the office. But we’ll see.

Either way, this looks like the first Mac laptop — of the four I’ll have ever owned — that I’ll be able to comfortably carry around on an everyday basis. And that should make it the most useful Mac laptop I’ll have ever owned, making it well worth the price.

Read: The Truth About The iPad, Day 100