Apple Announces New MacBook Air With 13-Inch Retina Display and Touch ID

Apple in New York today announced a new Retina Display-equipped MacBook Air, the first major update to the model in several years. The display is the centerpiece of the update, but it also gains a pair of Thunderbolt 3 ports and retains its headphone jack, mirroring other 13-inch notebooks in Apple's lineup. It's available in gold, silver, and space gray.

Pricing starts at $1,199, with preorders beginning today and first deliveries on November 7.


The new Air features 50 percent smaller bezels, allowing for a reduced footprint while retaining the same screen size. The 13.3-inch display has four times the resolution of the previous model at 2560x1600. The screen supports 48 percent more color than before, and the FaceTime HD camera remains tucked away at the top.

It has an 8th-gen Intel Core i5, with Intel UHD Graphics and 2133 MHz system memory up to 16GB (8GB standard), with faster SSDs up to 1.5TB in capacity.

There's a new Touch ID fingerprint sensor at the top right of the keyboard, alongside the physical function keys. Apple's T2 Security Chip is included, brought over from the MacBook Pro and iMac Pro — it protects Touch ID data, while also ensuring that the boot process has not been tampered with. There's an onboard SSD controller with on-the-fly data encryption for the Air's flash storage. It also enables "Hey Siri" support.


It uses the same third-generation keyboard as Apple's recent MacBook Pro models, and the Force Touch trackpad is here as well. Better, louder speakers are here, with 25 percent more volume and twice the bass.

It takes up 17 percent less volume, and is ten percent thinner than before, just 0.61-inches at its thickest point (by the hinge). It weighs 2.75 pounds, a quarter pound lighter than before.

Finally, Apple made much of the environmental impact of both the MacBook Air and the new Mac Mini, with both machines made from a new, custom-designed aluminum alloy that uses 100 percent recycled aluminum. Apple says this alloy helps reduce the Air's carbon footprint by 50 percent, "making it the greenest Mac ever."

In addition to the new $1,199 MacBook Air, the old version sticks around, beginning at $999.

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

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
25 months ago
there goes the only good keyboard on laptop...
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
25 months ago
128 GB seems like a lot... you could never use that much storage:rolleyes:
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
25 months ago

Nope. They needed the space for the 100 year old headphone jack.

Can’t wait to see if the iPad rumors pan out now ...

So Touch ID is now the MacBook thing? I wonder how long until FaceID replaces it too? I was kinda surprised it wasn’t included in this redesign. Maybe next year?

headphone jack is still one of the most useful things on the laptop
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
25 months ago
Literally a 13" Retina MacBook with an extra port. And cheaper.. what
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
25 months ago
Interesting, what does this mean for the non-tbMPB and just standard MacBook? I feel like this new Air makes them irrelevant.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
25 months ago
No way am I buying one with this keyboard, it's borderline unusable to type on and people are still reporting tons of failures. They should never have put it into production, but Jobs wasn't there to kill it...

Only Apple makes good trackpads. The old Air was the last laptop made (by any manufacturer) with a good trackpad and a decent keyboard.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iOS 14 Widgets Offer iPhone Users Creative Home Screen Ideas

Sunday September 20, 2020 8:43 pm PDT by
Updated on September 22nd with hands on video. In iOS 14, Apple introduced ‌the concept of Home Screen‌ widgets, which provide information from apps at a glance. Widgets can be pinned to the Home Screen in various spots and sizes, allowing for many different layouts. Despite the relative lack of...

iPhone 12 Lineup Rumored to Be Named 'iPhone 12 mini,' 'iPhone 12,' 'iPhone 12 Pro,' and 'iPhone 12 Pro Max'

Monday September 21, 2020 5:24 am PDT by
Leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today shared the alleged naming for the upcoming iPhone 12 lineup on Twitter. The tweet proposes that the upcoming iPhone 12 models will be titled "iPhone 12 mini," "iPhone 12," "iPhone 12 Pro," and "iPhone 12 Pro Max." The names likely correspond to the three expected sizes of iPhone 12, with the 5.4-inch model being the iPhone 12 mini, the 6.7-inch model ...

PSA: New Apple Watch Owners Have to Return Entire Device for Ill-Fitting Solo Loop or Braided Solo Loop

Monday September 21, 2020 3:26 pm PDT by
With the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple introduced two new band options, the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop. These new bands are unique because they have no clasps, buckles, or other fasteners, and instead use a stretch design to allow them to pull onto the wrist over the hand. Because these bands are not adjustable, Apple sells each one in nine different sizes to make sure each person...

Hands-On With iOS 14 Widgets, Custom Icons, and Home Screen Setup

Tuesday September 22, 2020 3:25 pm PDT by
Apple with iOS 14 introduced widgets on the Home Screen, leading to unprecedented levels of customization for the iPhone. Combined with Shortcuts that let you change an app's icon, iOS 14 lets you create a whole new look for your Home Screen. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. We've been following along with some of the creative alternative Home Screen designs that M...

Apple Releases First Public Betas of iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 With New Shazam Control Center Options

Monday September 21, 2020 10:34 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the first public betas of upcoming iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 updates to its public beta testing group, a few days after seeding the first betas to developers and a little less than a week after releasing the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 updates. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS‌ 14.2 updates over the air after ...

Microsoft Announces Outlook for Mac Redesign, Improvements to iOS and watchOS Apps

Tuesday September 22, 2020 8:56 am PDT by
Microsoft has today announced plans to bring a new design to its Outlook for Mac app along with several other improvements and features for Outlook on iOS and watchOS. In preparation for the public release of macOS Big Sur, Microsoft has been testing a new design for Outlook on Mac. The design includes Microsoft's Fluent icons and several design cues from Big Sur such as rounded corners....

Kuo: Apple to Accelerate Adoption of Mini-LED Displays in iPad and Mac Notebook Lineups

Sunday September 20, 2020 10:00 pm PDT by
Increased competition among Apple's suppliers for mini-LED display chips will accelerate the company's adoption of the advanced technology in its iPad and MacBook lineups, according to a new research note from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo seen by MacRumors. Kuo says that while Epistar had been predicted to be the exclusive supplier of mini-LED chips for Apple products in 2021, Sanan Optoelectronics...

Interest in iOS 14 Home Screen Ideas Helps Pinterest Break Daily Download Record

Wednesday September 23, 2020 4:37 am PDT by
Apple's introduction of widgets on the Home Screen in iOS 14 has driven a surge in interest among users looking to customize their iPhone, and that has reportedly had a knock-on effect for Pinterest, whose iOS app has seen record downloads as users flock to its content seeking design inspiration. As reported by TechCrunch, App Store intelligence firm Apptopia was first to note the impact of ...

Apple Releases Eighth Beta of macOS Big Sur to Developers [Update: Public Beta Now Available]

Tuesday September 22, 2020 10:08 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the eighth beta of an upcoming macOS Big Sur update to developers for testing purposes, close to a week after releasing the sixth beta and more than two months after the new update was unveiled at the Worldwide Developers Conference. The macOS Big Sur beta can be downloaded through the Apple Developer Center and once the appropriate profile is installed, subsequent betas...

AT&T Already Working on 6G, Says 5G iPhones Might Not Be 'Massive Event' Due to Economic Uncertainty

Monday September 21, 2020 10:05 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming launch of 5G iPhones might not be a "massive event" due to economic uncertainty amid the global health crisis, AT&T Communications CEO Jeff McElfresh said in a paywalled interview published by CNBC. "I do believe that you will see many of the iPhone subscribers move to upgrade to the device," said McElfresh. "But I wouldn't forecast that it's going to be a massive event. I...