On October 30, 2018, Apple hosted a major reveal event to show off several new products. One of these new products is the MacBook Air 2018, a new version of its lightweight, entry-level laptop. The product unveiling also followed the announcement of the new MacBook Pro 2018 which was announced back in July.
Apple last refreshed its MacBook Air line of laptops in 2017. The MacBook Air 2017, which is available as refurbished, offered improvements to its processor and its ports. The laptop was called an excellent choice for compact computing by critics but some said that it wasn’t the major overhaul that they were looking for.
With the new MacBook Air 2018, Apple seems to have delivered those big improvements. While the 2017 model is still a solid choice, the 2018 model offers a significant update in terms of features and hardware, giving fans the significant upgrade that they have been hoping to see. Read on for details about the new MacBook Air’s screen, keyboard, price, features and when you can expect to see it refurbished.
MacBook Air 2018 Screen Size and Resolution
One of the biggest upgrades of the MacBook Air 2018 is its screen. The new laptop has a 13.3-inch Retina display which Apple says offers a substantial visual upgrade over its predecessor. The display has four million pixels which makes this a 2K display with a native resolution of 2560×1600 and 227 pixel density.
Apple also says that the Retina display allows the new MacBook Air to show 48% more colors than the previous generation of the laptop. Images will look more realistic and text will look sharper and clearer, so sharp, in fact, that it will be almost as if digital documents have been printed onto the page.
As if that wasn’t enough, the MacBook Air 2018 screen has embraced the design principles of the new iPhones. In the same way that the iPhone X and the iPhone XS/XS Max/XR have a notch with an almost non-existent bezel, the MacBook Air’s display glass also takes up much more of the screen to make the border 50% thinner. This should mean that you will be less distracted by the bezel and can focus more on the gorgeous graphics being displayed in front of you.
MacBook Air 2018 Keyboard and Touch ID
Another jump forward regards the MacBook Air 2018’s keyboard and trackpad. The new laptop has a keyboard with Apple’s butterfly mechanism which it says makes the keys more stable and they feel more comfortable and responsive too. Meanwhile, the Force Touch trackpad is 20% bigger than before which should allow for more precise clicks.
That’s not all that’s changed with the keyboard, though, as the MacBook Air includes Touch ID as well. Users of Apple’s iPhones will be well acquainted with Touch ID by now – it is a fingerprint sensor that allows you to unlock your device or pay for things easily using Apple Pay. Not only does the new MacBook let you pay using Apple Pay or create a fingerprint password for the laptop itself, but you can even use it to secure documents and files and access the system settings too. It’s a massively helpful feature to have.
MacBook Air 2018 Technical Specs
The MacBook Pro is Apple’s most powerful system and has been designed for intensive tasks such as gaming, music production, and website development. But, Apple recognizes that MacBook Airs need to have decent technical specs too, catering to multi-taskers who have multiple programs and Chrome tabs open at once.
To that effect, the MacBook Air 2018 offers either 8GB or 16GB of RAM and 1.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processors with Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz. That’s far off from the MacBook Pro’s 8GB RAM and 2.3GHz quad-core processors (the base, 2018 model) but it’s more than enough to get the job done. It also features the T2 chip (the same chip in the MacBook Pro and iMac Pro) which makes the Touch ID and Siri integration possible.
There are also several different storage sizes. The base model of the MacBook Air with 8GB RAM has 128GB of storage, though you can configure this to 256GB, 512GB, or 1.5TB. The 16GB RAM MacBook Air has 256GB of storage and this can be configured to 512GB or 1.5TB.
MacBook Air 2018 Features
That’s not all that the MacBook Air 2018 offers, as there are lots of other, handy features for you to consider. This includes the two Thunderbolt 3 ports. These ports replace Apple’s MagSafe technology but they do allow you to charge the laptop, plug in USB-C connections, output video in three formats, connect to external displays (4K and 5K), external storage and eGPUs if you’d like to improve the laptop’s graphics even more.
Those with wired headphones will also be glad to know that the new MacBook Air also features a headphone jack! Apple’s iPhones haven’t featured a headphone jack since the iPhone 7 and many Apple fans have transitioned to using Bluetooth ones. But, if you’re still holding onto your wired cans or just prefer those, you’ll be glad to know that they’ll work with the new MacBook Air.
MacBook Air 2018 Battery Life
Impressively, the MacBook Air 2018 is able to offer this without compromising on battery life. In fact, Apple’s new laptop has one of the longest battery lives out of the entire MacBook range.
Here’s a quick overview of the battery life you can expect:
- 12 hours of battery life when wirelessly surfing the web
- 13 hours of iTunes movie playback
- 30 days of standby time
This well and truly beats out the MacBook Pro and the standard MacBook which bother offer 10 hours of web surfing.
MacBook Air 2018 Dimensions and Weight
The MacBook Air is known for being lightweight and portable which is why Apple has worked to improve these factors with its latest model.
The 13.3 inch laptop has dimensions of 11.97 x 8.36 x 0.61 inches and weighs just 2.75 pounds (1.25kg). This makes the new MacBook Air 17% lighter than the 2017 model. It’s nothing short of incredible that Apple has managed to make its new device even slimmer, especially given that this was already a laptop that is easy to fit into bags and cases and take with you on the commute or when you’re travelling.
MacBook Air 2018 Price
Unsurprisingly, these features don’t come cheap.
Prices for the new MacBook Air start at $1,199 (for the 128GB model) which makes it $200 more expensive than the previous base model of the laptop.
The 256GB model of the MacBook Air 2018 costs $1,399.
What is the MacBook Air 2018 Release Date?
Good news: the new MacBook Air releases on November 7, 2018! As of the time of writing, that’s tomorrow! Stock is expected to sell out quickly, however, so if you haven’t pre-ordered the laptop then you may not be able to get one on launch day.
It could take several days or even a week for stock to be replenished, so just brace yourself for disappointment if they’ve sold out.
When Will the MacBook Air 2018 Be Refurbished?
The new MacBook Air 2018 may be an entry-level MacBook but it’s not exactly a cheap piece of kit. So, a smart choice is to wait until it is available as refurbished. When buying from RefurbMe‘s trusted retail partners, the refurbished version of the laptop will be of great cosmetic quality and will be in working order, having been tested and repaired (if needed) by experienced engineers and quality testers.
The exact date when the laptop will be available as refurbished is unclear as refurbished stock depends on people trading in or returning their laptops. It usually takes approximately three months for Apple laptops to be refurbished – the MacBook Pro, for example, was released in July and became available as refurbished in mid-October.
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