Will 2018 see the death or revival of the MacBook Air?
Time and again, it’s been said that the MacBook Air’s days are numbered. And, yet, here we are, speculating on the release of a MacBook Air 2018.
That’s because, in spite of all the rumors and reports swirling around the death of arguably Apple’s most popular laptop in recent memory – including this one just in January 2017 – the MacBook Air is still here.
In fact, the MacBook Air processor was just refreshed in June 2017, though it simply upped the clock speed of the existing, Intel Broadwell Core series chip inside. So, what gives?
That’s exactly what we’re here to try and get to the bottom of. We can’t say that we have any official information, but we can make some educated guesses based on releases in the past and what we’ve heard so far. Plus, we can list what we want to see if a new MacBook Air 2018 does see a release.
Join us and bookmark this page, as we’ll be updating it with the latest MacBook Air 2018 information if and when it arises.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? A hopeful sequel to Apple’s most popular laptop
- When is it out? June 2018 at the earliest?
- What will it cost? Hopefully as much as current models
MacBook Air 2018 release date
Since the only rumor of a 2018 MacBook Air is actually foretelling its death, we have no idea exactly when the MacBook Air 2018 release date will be. Of course, that doesn’t mean we can’t speculate based on previous MacBook Air releases.
Looking back at 2017, Apple surprised us in two ways regarding the MacBook Air. First, Apple refreshing the MacBook Air at all in June 2017 – just following its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) – was a surprise. Then, it was unfortunately surprising that the refresh was so … light.
Before this, Apple hadn’t updated the MacBook Air since March 2015. That’s when the laptop got its first Broadwell-generation Intel Core processor.
Looking back further than this, the MacBook Air has received updates on an annual basis since its release in 2008, and in largely different months during those years. That said, June has been the most popular month for this laptop to receive upgrades.
So, that leaves us with the most likely release month for a would-be 2018 MacBook Air being June, likely directly following a WWDC 2018 announcement. That would be a properly annual launch, and have the fanfare of Apple’s huge developer event behind it for a triumphant return.
If Apple misses that time frame, the next likely debut window is October or November, just in time for the Christmas and holiday shopping craze. We’ll look out for new rumors and update this article as soon as the possible MacBook Air 2018 release date begins to inch closer.
MacBook Air 2018 price
Of course, without a mention of a MacBook Air 2018 rumor beyond its prophesied death, that leaves us with next to nothing regarding the price of such an Apple laptop. Those types of leaks don’t tend to crop up until we get closer to an expected release date.
However, don’t expect much about the MacBook Air price to change year over year – its affordability is a huge part of its continued draw. Apple has already nailed the prices for its two MacBook Air models, starting at $999, £949 or AU$1,499.
From there, you can double the starting model’s 128GB SSD capacity to 256GB for another $200, £150 or AU$300.
If pricing were to change this year, we’d wager that Apple would simply make room for that rumored 13-inch, entry-level MacBook by either bumping up or knocking down this MacBook Air’s hardware and adjust accordingly. Though, it’s probably more likely that Apple would just shutter the laptop line altogether if that aforementioned MacBook is a reality.
We’ll look out for new rumors and update this article as soon as the MacBook Air 2018 price begins to grow clearer.
What we want to see in MacBook Air 2018
Naturally, this 100% lack of any truly substantial information about the forthcoming 2018 MacBook Air gives us plenty of room to draw up a wishlist. So, here’s what we want to see from a MacBook Air for 2018.
Up-to-date components all around
This is the most basic and essential of requests, but the MacBook Air could really use a soup-to-nuts upgrade. From the processor to the ports and screen resolution, everything about the MacBook Air could do with updating.
The easiest way to do this would be to introduce one of these new Intel processors with AMD Vega, discrete-grade graphics on board. They’re already finding their way to new laptops this year, and that would be all the power a MacBook Air would need – with battery life preserved.
The traditional keyboard stays
For as much as we appreciate the revised butterfly hinge keyboard in the MacBook and MacBook Pro, we’d really like to see at least one Apple laptop hold onto its traditional keyboard. There’s enough room inside the chassis, and giving fans a choice would be admirable.
Plus, using existing hardware could keep the costs of a revamped MacBook Air down to where they should be, thus maintaining the price.
Fast charging, please
It shouldn’t be difficult for Apple to maintain the same stellar level of battery life within the MacBook Air if all of its parts are upgraded in tandem. But, just to make the experience that much better, charging the laptop for 10-plus hours of use in a fraction of the time would be nice.
This comes in tandem with the request for new ports, i.e. USB-C for fast charging, but we’d like to see to see the MagSafe cord remain. Even the option for both would be pleasant.
iOS apps on MacBook Pro
Now that it’s been bandied about for a while, we’ve come around to idea of iOS apps on macOS. The prospect of continuing work from our phones straight away on our laptops – or polishing off that top score upon sitting down at the desk – is an exciting one.
However, Apple needs to determine how this is going to be intuitive if a MacBook with a touchscreen remains unlikely. Will the mouse simply stand in for our fingers, or does Apple have something fresh up its sleeve?