Dropping MacBook Airs Would Create a Hole in Apple’s Lineup →

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John Gruber:

We might be getting that speed bump update (along with USB-C ports), but I would be very surprised if we get a major update with retina displays. I still think the future is just MacBooks and MacBook Pros.

I held the same view as John for quite a while. The MacBook Airs seem to be going the way of the 2012 non-Retina MacBook Pro. But this does create a hole in Apple’s lineup. The MacBooks have the slowest CPUs, which don’t need fans, while the MacBook Pros are getting the faster mobile units. The series of Intel chips used in the Airs would be missing if they were dropped.

What Apple could do:

  • leave the 12″ MacBook as is — fanless and ultraportable,
  • create new Retina MacBook Airs in 13″ and 15″ sizes, with dual-core fan-needing CPUs of the ULV variety,
  • switch both the 13″ and 15″ MacBook Pros over to quad-core CPUs — the 13-inch models have been using the more powerful dual-core Intels exclusively.

While I don’t for a moment imagine this will happen, it would create an extremely versatile lineup of MacBooks, which should fill everyone’s needs, while bringing the ‘Pro’ back to the 13″ MacBook Pro, and making the Airs an extremely versatile machine for people who don’t necessarily need the horsepower, but want nice, big screens.

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