MacBook Overview Updated February 21, 2020

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December 2010 - February 2020


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Originally released April 10, 2015 and last refreshed April 19, 2016, the all-new MacBook ($1,299 and up from the Apple Store) is the thinnest and lightest Mac laptop ever made. It’s also the first MacBook to be offered in four color options: classic silver, space gray, gold and rose gold.

Currently offered only with a 12″ screen, it represents the future of Apple laptops. Following a refresh in April 2016, it now includes a 2304×1440 (226ppi) Retina display, 8GB of RAM and up to 512GB of SSD storage, coupled with ultra-low-power Intel Core M processors. The base model includes a 1.1GHz dual-core Intel Core M chip with an Intel HD Graphics 515 GPU; and upgraded models offer to 1.2GHz dual-core Intel Core m5 or 1.3GHz dual-core Intel Core m7 processor with Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz.

With a redesigned chassis that’s only slightly wider than the keyboard, the new MacBook’s 0.14″–0.52″ thickness was achieved in part by dropping all external connectivity ports save for a 3.5mm headphone port and a new reversible USB-C port, which can be used for power, data connectivity, and video output. Most of the MacBook’s connectivity is handled wirelessly with 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4 support. It promises 9-10 hours of battery life depending on how the computer is being used.

A redesigned Force Touch trackpad now can sense multiple levels of pressure rather than just one, using four pressure sensors and a haptic feedback pad to replicate the clickiness of a traditional trackpad. Additionally, the keyboard has been completely redesigned to retain the expected clicks, precision, and travel of conventional keys, while cutting their depth and width to fit the chassis. An ultra-thin top lid has only enough depth for a 640×480 FaceTime camera, a compromise for the smaller size.

Just like the first-generation MacBook Air, the new MacBook is aimed at users whose computing needs don’t demand incredible horsepower, yet benefit from a slim, light chassis with a really nice screen. Though you’ll do better in raw dollar terms and power by buying a comparably priced 13″ Retina MacBook Pro, you’ll have nearly twice the weight to carry around (2.03 pounds versus 3.48 pounds) and a larger footprint to manage. The choice of which is best for your needs will be highly personal.

Current Lineup:

  • MacBook (12-inch, Early 2016)

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MacBook Stories February 21

We’re into 2020 and USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 display options are growing. It’s great to see Apple’s Pro Display XDR on the market but it’s likely not the best fit for the majority of users with a starting price of $5,000 without a stand. Let’s take a look at some of the best USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 displays available for MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and iPad Pro in the $400-$1,300 range.

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MacBook Stories February 19

How to connect AirPods to your MacBook

Whether you just got a pair of AirPods or AirPods Pro or have had them for a while but just haven’t used them with your Mac, follow along for how to connect AirPods to your MacBook. We’ll also look at how to set up seamless one-click or keyboard shortcut pairing with a Mac.

MacBook Stories February 17

A supply-chain report predicts that laptop production in China will be severely hit by the coronavirus outbreak and that global shipments for this quarter will be down by anything between 29% and 36%.

Quanta, which makes most of Apple’s MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models, has contingency plans in place, but these are not expected to be sufficient…

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MacBook Stories February 13

RAVPower is out with a new GaN charger that features dual USB-C PD ports, a svelte design, and up to 90W output (even from just one of the ports). We’ve been testing out the RAVPower 90W 2-Port Wall Charger for the last couple of weeks. Here’s why we think it offers a compelling package of form and function.

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MacBook Stories February 10

Oscar winner Taika Waititi says Writers Guild union needs to get Apple to fix the MacBook keyboards

In a hilarious question and answer session with Oscar-winning Taika Waititi, the writer was asked by the throng of press what writers should be asking for in the next rounds of talks of producers through the Writers Guild of America union. His answer: “Apple needs to fix those keyboards.”

MacBook Stories January 30

Satechi launches USB-C Slim Adapter with Ethernet, 60W charging, and SD slots

Satechi is out today with a new USB-C Adapter aimed and keeping things minimal without giving up I/O like Ethernet and SD card slots. The new USB-C Slim Multi-Port Adapter is available now and may be most appealing to 13-inch MacBook Pro and MacBook Air owners.

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