Most recently refreshed in 2020, Apple’s MacBook Air ($999 and up) started out as a significantly slimmer, lighter, and more expensive alternative to the 13-inch MacBook Pro.
MacBook Air Specs and Performance
The current Air now replaces the butterfly keyboard with a Magic Keyboard similar to what Apple debuted in the 16-inch MacBook Pro. The internal specs have also been given a boost.
The new Air features the latest 10th-generation Intel CPUs with up to 1.2GHz quad-core i7. Apple has updated the default storage size on the Air to include 256 GB for no additional charge. Previous generations only included 128 GB of flash storage.
Other features include a headphone jack, 2 Thunderbolt ports (USB-C), and a screen resolution of 2560-by-1600 with over 4 million pixels. It’s claimed to be 48% brighter than the previous generation.
If you are looking to connect your Air to an external display, be sure to check our guide to help understand how many (and what type) can be connected.
Initial benchmarks show up to 63% faster than the predecessor, but not as fast as 2018 iPad Pro.
MacBook Air Pricing
The MacBook Air (2020) starts at $999, but there are upgrade options to boost the processor, add more RAM (16 GB), and storage (up to 2 TB).
Apple offers an education pricing of $899 on the stock model, but also offers a $799 model with 128 GB of flash storage that they only sell directly to K-12 school
MacBook Air Reviews
Reviews of Apple’s low-cost laptop are very positive.
Dana Wollman (Engadget) offers heaps of praise for the new keyboard, though she notes it’s a tad noisy:
If you can’t tell, I love this keyboard. I won’t be returning to my company-issued MacBook Pro unless I need to use the VPN. Just know that the slight trade-off to this new and improved typing experience is that it’s a tad noisy. It’s not a problem when I’m working alone in my apartment, but if I were in an office or coworking space I might feel a little self-conscious.
Jason Snell at SixColors points out that the new $999 entry-level price point for the MacBook Air is what Apple should have done a few years ago. The inclusion of more powerful configuration options also makes the MacBook Air a viable choice for everyone.