Apple Expected to Release New MacBook Air at End of Third Quarter: September or October

Aug 15, 2018 10:49 am PDT by Joe Rossignol
Apple will release a new MacBook Air at the end of the third quarter, according to Taiwanese research firm TrendForce. That lines up with either September or October, depending on how the wording is interpreted.

TrendForce also refers to a new MacBook Pro in future tense, but it is surely referring to the models released in July, when the third quarter began:
The second quarter was the transition period when Apple was preparing for the releases of the upcoming new MacBook devices for the year. TrendForce therefore expects MacBook shipments to again post a large QoQ increase in 3Q18, as Apple will be releasing a new MacBook Pro at the start of the quarter and a new MacBook Air at the end of the quarter.
The report does not provide additional details, but both Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg News reporter Mark Gurman expect Apple to release a new entry-level notebook later this year, and they are two of the more reliable sources as it relates to Apple's upcoming product plans.

TrendForce specifically says it will be a new MacBook Air, but Kuo and Gurman have not identified what branding the notebook will have.

Earlier this year, DigiTimes claimed that Apple will release the first MacBook Air with a Retina display in the second half of 2018, and noted that it will be a 13-inch model in a separate report. This week, it said Quanta will assemble new "inexpensive notebooks" from Apple in the fourth quarter.

Whether it turns out to be a MacBook, MacBook Air, or something else, Gurman expects at least one of the entry-level notebooks, if there are more than one, to have a starting price of $999 or less in the United States.

The current MacBook Air hasn't seen any substantial updates in over three years. Since that time, Apple has discontinued the 11-inch model, while the processor on the base 13-inch model received a minor bump in clock speed, but it's still a Broadwell chip from the 2014–2015 timeframe.

Apple could announce availability of a new MacBook Air via press release at any point this fall, or save it for a September or October event. At this point, we lean towards an October release, as the September event should be busy, with a trio of new iPhones, Apple Watch Series 4 models, new AirPods, and more.

With refreshes to other Macs expected later this year, including the iMac and Mac mini, and a widely expected iPad Pro with Face ID, Apple may have enough in its pipeline for an October event, which it last held in 2016.

Related Roundup: MacBook Air
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Air (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)

20 months ago
All anyone has
Ever asked for is a MacBook Air with a retina screen.
Rating: 31 Votes
20 months ago
"Gurman expects at least one of the entry-level notebooks to have a starting price of $999"

What's Apple idea of entry level? 2GB RAM and 64MB SSD?
Rating: 27 Votes
20 months ago
It doesn't make sense to keep using the Air moniker

It's either Pro or non-Pro

MacBook - MacBook Pro
iMac - iMac Pro
iPad - iPad Pro
iPhone - iPhone Pro
Apple Watch - Apple Watch Pro
Apple TV - Apple TV Pro
iCloud - iCloud Pro

Rating: 23 Votes
20 months ago
With zero ports and inductive charging.
Rating: 17 Votes
20 months ago

Nope, people were clamoring for Touch Bar.

LOL!! That's sarcasm, right?
Rating: 13 Votes
20 months ago

"Gurman expects at least one of the entry-level notebooks to have a starting price of $999"

What's Apple idea of entry level? 2GB RAM and 64MB SSD?

Yep, and it'll still have the "Industry Standard" (as of about 2007) resolution of 1280x800.
Rating: 12 Votes
20 months ago
"There's something in the Air...and it's not AirPower."
Rating: 11 Votes
20 months ago
Time to see what the future holds for the Apple laptops. Hopefully this new Air will not come with the ****** keyboard.
Rating: 10 Votes
20 months ago
Dear Apple, it's come to this. We would now be happy if you stopped taking away stuff we need and want. The current MacBook Air only lacks a retina screen. Of course we would want more modern ports, but we know you now only take away, so we aren't going to even ask. Please keep literally everything the same except for one thing: add a retina screen. We'll even let you charge an extra $100 for it.

Everyone would be really happy even though you've delayed this for six years when it could have been done in a month. Please listen to your customers. No one is happy with the direction of your laptops. No one is happy with how you have overthought and over designed for something few people want. We know what we want, because you've told us what we need and we have rejected it. You've tried it your way for six years. Can you not just try it our way this once? We are asking you to just take the easy money. You won't be compromising your corporate principles in any way.
Rating: 7 Votes
20 months ago

Seems the vocal minority is still grinding on this old keyboard as superior. I'm pretty sure Apple understands preference in terms of the keyboard. If the new one were that hated, it'd be gone. Most people like the butterfly keyboard.

Yeah, remember how many people complained about the last generation of keyboard? Oh right. Nobody did. Nobody had an opinion on the last keyboard because nobody should notice a keyboard. It should just be there and just work, like the last generation of keyboard did. The fact that the butterfly keyboard turns off a sizable number of users makes it a design fail right off the bat.
Rating: 6 Votes

[ Read All Comments ]