MacBook Overview Updated June 28, 2016

MacBook

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.

443 MacBook stories

December 2010 - May 2016

MacBook Stories May 23

AAPL: 96.43

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Apple and the Maine Department of Education are swapping out iPads for MacBooks after a survey found that students and teachers alike favored laptops for older students. The deal means that there will be no additional cost to schools for exchanging the devices, reports the Lewiston-Auburn Sun Journal.

Auburn School Department Technology Director Peter Robinson said that the success of iPads in primary grades had make them look like the right choice at the time, but they have turned out to be less than ideal for older students …

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MacBook Stories May 21

AAPL: 95.22

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Yesterday, I bought a 12″ MacBook, and after playing with it for 10 minutes, I immediately knew that I made the right decision. 24 hours later, I’m convinced that this is the best laptop for me, and a much better portable workhorse than something like a 12.9″ iPad Pro. Here are 10 reasons why you should consider going with a MacBook if you’re in the market for something powerful, yet portable. expand full story

MacBook Stories May 6

AAPL: 92.72

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MacBook Stories May 2

AAPL: 93.64

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If you own a MacBook Pro with Retina Display and desire extra screen real estate, then a 4K monitor can be a good investment, especially as the price of such monitors continue to dwindle.

Why should you consider a 4K display instead of a cheaper monitor with lesser resolution? It all boils down to clarity. expand full story

MacBook Stories April 26

AAPL: 104.35

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Yesterday, we showed you how to upgrade late model MacBooks with a 480GB or 1TB SSD. In some cases these upgrades might yield eight times the original capacity of the machine’s internal storage.

While it’s certainly nice to have the option of upgrading, such enhancements do come with downsides. First, there’s the price: it’s $600 to upgrade to a 1TB drive. Second, the upgrade breaks Boot Camp support.

But $600 is relatively cheap when you compare what it costs to score a MacBook with a 1TB SSD. MacBooks feature faster PCIe storage, but it’s still a high price to pay for something so vital — and so cheap by today’s standards.

Apple’s MacBook line has an issue with internal flash storage prices. It’s a problem that continues to worsen, especially as Apple has made it increasingly difficult for users to upgrade. expand full story

MacBook Stories April 25

AAPL: 105.08

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Our friends over at iFixit are doing their ritual teardown of Apple’s new 12-inch MacBook, and while the new device is essentially the same as the previous generation save for some refreshed components, the repair guide site also noticed some tweaks as far as repairability goes.

Most notably, Apple replaced a tri-wing screw with a much more common Phillips screw, which is always a plus for allowing easier repairs, although it continues to use its proprietary Pentalobe screws on the exterior of the case. That might be the only new positive for the updated MacBook, however, as iFixit also notes that it discovered hinge screws for the device which are “filled with some sort of substance that disintegrates when you insert a screwdriver.” The site speculates that it appears to be an Apple effort at “tamper-evident screws,” which in theory could allow the company to know if a third-party or DIY repair attempt has been made voiding warranty. Or as iFixit put it, “make you feel like a hoodlum for repairing your own machine.”

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