- Apple refreshed its MacBook Air and MacBook Pro laptops earlier this month.
- The starting price of the MacBook Air dropped by $100, and Apple added its True Tone feature to the computer’s Retina display.
- Apple beefed up its entry-level MacBook Pro to give it quad-core Intel processors and the company’s Touch Bar, which replaces the traditional function keys, amid other changes.
- Critics really seem to dig the changes to the MacBooks, praising their design and upgraded performance, although note a few areas that still need improvement.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Apple refreshed its popular MacBook Air and MacBook Pro laptops this month in the lead-up to its annual back-to-school promotions that begin around August and September.
The MacBook Air now has a starting price that’s $100 more than before, meaning the new computer starts at $1,099. The only other major difference is that the MacBook Air’s new Retina displays also include True Tone technology, which helps match the screen’s color temperature to your surroundings to make viewing easier on the eyes.
Read more: Apple kills its 12-inch MacBook and launches cheaper new MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models
The entry-level MacBook Pro, meanwhile, got a more substantial upgrade.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro, which has a starting price of $1,299, now features quad-core Intel processors (compared to the dual-core processors in the previous entry-level model), Apple’s T2 security chip, and the Touch Bar, which replaces the traditional function keys along the top of the keyboard. If you’ve never used it before, the Touch Bar is a touchscreen display that lets you control aspects of the computer with virtual keys, which change depending on the applications you’re using at the time.
A handful of tech and news publications got their hands on Apple’s newest laptops this week, and for the most part, they had positive things to say. Still, there are a few hangups that had some critics feeling like Apple’s latest MacBooks are only “very good,” instead of “insanely great.”
First, let’s talk about Apple’s new MacBook Air.
The Verge’s Dieter Bohn rated the new MacBook Air a 7 out of 10, praising the computer’s design, Retina display, and Touch ID, but knocking its inferior webcam, its bare USB-C ecosystem, and Apple’s decision to remove the MagSafe charging system.
Hollis Johnson/Business Insider
This bit sums up Bohn’s reviewÂ pretty well:
This MacBook Air isn’t the obvious, default choice anymore. …Â What made that classic MacBook Air so special is that it cut through all those caveats for so many people and did it consistently for so many years. 2019’s MacBook Air is good, but it hasn’t yet earned the title of The Default Laptop. After all, for $200 more, you couldÂ get a MacBook Pro.
Matt Hanson from TechRadar gave the new MacBook Air 4 out of 5 stars, calling it a “great bit of kit that’s nicely put together (as we’ve come to expect from Apple), but it just won’t be for everyone.”
Hollis Johnson/Business Insider
Hanson found the MacBook Air does all of the basics well â€” the keyboard is “pleasant,” battery life is longlasting, and the screen is “more stunning than ever” â€” but he didn’t like the arrangement of having both USB-C ports so close together, which makes for some awkward setups, and the expensive upgrades for more storage.
This bit sums up his review:
The market for premium $1,000 laptops is more packed than it’s ever been, with some incredible machines dominating the price point, mainly spurred by the success of the original MacBook Air. With a price of $1,099, the MacBook Air 2018 is going toe to toe with impressive Windows alternatives, like theÂ Huawei MateBook X ProÂ andÂ Dell XPS 13. Both offer more powerful components and beautiful displays for comparable prices.
Of course, the XPS 13 and MateBook X Pro are only viable alternatives if you’re prepared to switch to Windows 10. If you’re wedded to macOS and Apple’s ecosystem, then the Apple MacBook Air (2018) offers the most affordable way to get a new MacBook â€“ and its latest refresh, as well as drop in price, definitely gives it better value.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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