2022 MacBook Air Rumors: Non-Tapered Design With Notched Mini-LED Display, MagSafe, 'M2' Chip, and More

Following the highly accurate leaks about the new MacBook Pros that were first reported by MacRumors, we now have clearer details and more certain expectations about the next-generation MacBook Air that Apple is working on. Here's everything we've learned in the past few months.

notch macbook air rounded mock

Here Comes the Notch (Again)

The next-generation ‌MacBook Air‌ will feature a notch in the display housing. This is according to Ty98, the same leaker who was first to mention the notch on the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros. This detail was mentioned in the same highly accurate forum post from August 19 discussing the new MacBook Pro models.

macbook pro 2021 notch feature
The likelihood is that, similar to the MacBook Pro, there will be no Face ID in the next ‌MacBook Air‌, as the notch will house only the camera and ambient light sensor plus an indicator light.

Goodbye Tapered Wedge Design

Ty98 also said that the next ‌MacBook Air‌ will "look much better" because Apple will eliminate the current wedge design that has been synonymous with the company's thinnest notebook since October 2010, when the tapered unibody chassis was introduced. The tapered design transitions from thicker at the back to thinner at the front, whereas the new, more uniform design will be not only "light" but "very round," according to the Chinese leaker.

macbook air m1

Wedged tapered design of current ‌MacBook Air‌

Other ‌‌MacBook Air‌‌ rumors have also suggested that Apple is designing a thinner and lighter version of the machine with thinner bezels than the current model. For example, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman in January reported that Apple is working on a "thinner and lighter" version of the ‌MacBook Air‌, which is likely to achieve a smaller profile by shrinking the border around the 13-inch screen. On a related note, Apple considered building a larger version of the ‌MacBook Air‌ with a 15-inch screen, but Apple isn't moving forward with this for the next generation, according to Gurman.

Given that Apple has adopted a black well for the keyboard and full-size function keys on the new MacBook Pro models, as was predicted, it would seem logical for Apple to bring this look to the ‌MacBook Air‌ as well. Such a change would also necessitate a smaller trackpad.

Hello MagSafe (Also Again)

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo was first to report that the MagSafe charging connector would return to Apple's MacBooks in future designs. That has already been realized in the just-announced MacBook Pro models, but Gurman has since claimed ‌MagSafe‌ is also coming to the MacBook Air.

macbook pro magsafe 3 charging
In Gurman's report, he clams that ‌MagSafe‌ will feature in the new 13-inch ‌‌MacBook Air‌‌ model in addition to a pair of Thunderbolt/USB4 ports for connecting external devices.

Enter Apple's 'M2' Chip

Apple this week unveiled the M1 Pro and M1 Max chips, which are specially designed for the new MacBook Pro machines. These chips share high-performance architectures aimed at sating the needs of resource-hungry creative professional workflows, therefore are unlikely to feature in Apple's entry-level MacBook offering.

m2 feature
Instead, Apple is expected to debut a high-end "direct successor" to the M1 processor found in the 13-inch MacBook Pro, Mac mini, and current ‌MacBook Air‌. The new chip, codenamed Staten, will include the same number of performance and efficiency cores as the ‌M1‌ but will run faster, according to Gurman. It will also see the number of graphics cores increase, from seven or eight, to nine or 10. In addition, Gurman says Apple plans an update to the low-end 13-inch MacBook Pro using the same chip.

The new chip in the next ‌MacBook Air‌ could take the moniker "M2." This revised nomenclature is based on rumors from leakers Jon Prosser and Dylandkt, both of whom have accurately predicted some of Apple's plans in the past.

Another Mini-LED Notebook

According to Kuo, the ‌‌MacBook Air‌‌ will feature a mini-LED display, a prediction also echoed by DigiTimes. Both the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro feature mini-LED-based Liquid Retina XDR displays, and there is good reason to expect if not an identical specification display, then a mini-LED variation in the ‌MacBook Air‌.

Mini LED MacBook Pro Feature
Mini-LED display technology brings a significant improvement in MacBook display quality, allowing for thinner, lighter designs while offering benefits like improved wide color gamut, high contrast and dynamic range, and truer blacks. Several reports have suggested that MacBooks will be the main driver of mini-LED panel shipments going forward as Apple transitions to the technology across all of its display-based products.

Multiple Colors Could Be Coming

According to Apple leaker Jon Prosser, Apple's upcoming release of the ‌MacBook Air‌ will feature various colors, similar to the colors in the current 24-inch iMac. Prosser has shared concept renders of MacBook Airs in several colors, and his source has told him he has personally seen a prototype of a blue MacBook. Kuo has also intimated that the next ‌MacBook Air‌ will be offered in multiple colors.

Notably, a Reddit poster that recently collated the accurate MacBook Pro leaks also claimed that the rumor about a ‌MacBook Air‌ launching in additional colors is "true."

macbook colors 3d black bezels

MacRumors concept render

If the information is accurate, the new colorful lineup of MacBooks would be a throwback to the older iBook G3. Apple first started to offer vibrant color options for its iPad with the iPad Air, released in October 2020, and the ‌‌iMac‌‌ followed suit. Just this week we saw new color variants of the HomePod mini introduced, suggesting this could be a trend as Apple hones its ability to mass produce products in multiple colors at scale.

That said, the introduction of colored chassis could pose problems for a notch. If the ‌MacBook Air‌ goes the way of the colored ‌iMac‌, that would likely entail white display bezels – and presumably a white notch, which couldn't so easily be hidden, at least by using dark mode. In which case, Apple would have to settle on a multiple-color design that remains notch-friendly by incorporating black bezels around the screen.

When Will It Be Released?

The current ‌MacBook Air‌ was announced in November 2020, and 334 days have passed since its release as of writing. The average time between ‌MacBook Air‌ updates in the last few years is 398 days, which suggests an update could be coming soon.

Bloomberg originally reported that the new ‌MacBook Air‌ could come as soon as late 2021, but given that Apple's last event of the year has likely come and gone, a launch next year is much more probable.

Kuo also initially reported a 2021 launch, but subsequently revised his expectation and now believes Apple will release a new version of the ‌MacBook Air‌ around the middle of 2022, although it could always come sooner.

Related Roundup: MacBook Air
Tag: Ty98
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Air (Caution)
Related Forum: MacBook Air

Top Rated Comments

KarimLeVallois Avatar
13 weeks ago
I actually like the wedged design, much nicer on the wrists.
Score: 63 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mattopotamus Avatar
13 weeks ago
"The current ‌MacBook Air‌ was announced in November 2020, and 334 days have passed since its release as of writing. The average time between ‌MacBook Air‌ updates in the last few years is 398 days, which suggests an update is overdue."

Explain that overdue math to me?
Score: 39 Votes (Like | Disagree)
themoose Avatar
13 weeks ago
Losing the wedge design, perhaps they will go back to the “MacBook” name and drop the “Air”
Score: 36 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MacFather Avatar
13 weeks ago
Deleted.
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
contacos Avatar
13 weeks ago
It’s a shame they did not release it now. I probably won’t be using half the power of the 14 inch Pro I have just ordered but I didn’t want to wait anymore to replace my MBP from 2012
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mr. Awesome Avatar
13 weeks ago
I think it’s more likely that Apple will make the keyboard white instead of black, to match the design of the iMac.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

macbook air rounded mock green

Everything the New MacBook Pro Tells Us About the Next-Gen MacBook Air

Friday November 12, 2021 3:01 am PST by
With Apple's latest high-end MacBook Pro being such a radical departure from the previous model, some users are now looking to the next-generation MacBook Air and what similar changes could be brought over to the company's smallest and lightest laptop. Rumors already abound about the next-generation MacBook Air, providing a number of insights into Apple's plans for the new ultra-portable...
macbook air teal

MacBook Air Coming in 2022 Also Rumored to Feature Notch Design

Sunday October 17, 2021 11:25 am PDT by
The next-generation MacBook Air that's set to be released in 2022 will also feature a notch, according to the same leaker who was first to mention the notch coming to the 2021 MacBook Pro models. In a forum post from August discussing the new MacBook Pro models, leaker Ty98 said that the next-generation MacBook Air will include the same notch that Apple is introducing for the MacBook Pro. ...
maxresdefault

Five Features to Look Forward to in the 2022 MacBook Air

Tuesday November 30, 2021 1:51 pm PST by
In 2022, Apple is going to release an updated version of the MacBook Air with some of the biggest design changes that we've seen since 2010, when Apple introduced the 11 and 13-inch size options. In the video below, we highlight five features that you need to know about the new machine. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. No More Wedge Design - Current MacBook...
Flat MacBook Air Feature

Leaks Expose Redesigned MacBook Air With Even Thinner Design and Colors

Friday May 21, 2021 2:29 am PDT by
Apple is working on a radically redesigned version of the MacBook Air, featuring an even "thinner and lighter" design, multiple color options, and changes to almost all aspects of the machine, according to recent reports. Leaker Jon Prosser recently revealed renders purporting to accurately represent the next-generation MacBook Air. Prosser said that the design of the ‌MacBook Air‌...
macbook air rounded mock purple

'MacBook Air' Name Could Be Scrapped Next Year

Monday November 22, 2021 2:29 am PST by
Apple could scrap the "MacBook Air" moniker for its lightweight, entry-level Mac laptop next year, a recent rumor has suggested. Apple is widely expected to be planning the launch of a new MacBook Air, featuring a slimmer, non-tapered design, the "M2" chip, a mini-LED display, a notch and white bezels, MagSafe charging, a 1080p webcam, and a range of color options, for release next year....
macbook air orange

Apple Developing a Whole New Kind of MacBook Air

Monday June 21, 2021 2:15 am PDT by
Apple is believed to be working on a completely new, high-end version of the MacBook Air, according to recent reports. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, who often reveals accurate insights into Apple's plans, has repeatedly discussed the company's work on a high-end MacBook Air. Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and leaker Jon Prosser have also referred to a similar MacBook Air model. The high-end...
MBA Mock White Front Blue

Next MacBook Air to Feature Off-White Bezels and Keyboard, M2 Chip, USB-C Ports Only, MagSafe, and iMac-Like Colors

Thursday October 21, 2021 12:50 pm PDT by
The next-generation MacBook Air will have several features that are adopted from the upcoming MacBook Pro models, according to leaker Dylandkt, who has a track record of providing accurate details about Apple's plans. Upcoming MacBook Air models will have a design that's "quite similar" to the new MacBook Pros, but with a thinner body, off-white bezels, and no wedge shape. It will come in...
prosser macbook air colors stacked

Kuo: Redesigned MacBook Air With Mini-LED Display and Several Color Options to Launch in Mid 2022

Tuesday August 10, 2021 7:56 am PDT by
Apple plans to launch a new MacBook Air with a mini-LED display and several color options around mid 2022, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in a research note obtained by MacRumors. These details line up with previous rumors about the new MacBook Air from sources like Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and YouTube tech personality Jon Prosser. A colorful MacBook Air concept shared by Jon Prosser Kuo said ...

Popular Stories

maxresdefault

Review: M1 Max MacBook Pro After Three Months

Wednesday January 19, 2022 11:30 am PST by
It's now been a few months since the M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro models launched in October, and MacRumors video editor Dan Barbera has been using one of the new machines since they debuted. Over on the MacRumors YouTube channel, Dan has shared a three month review of his MacBook Pro to see how it has held up over time and how it's changed his workflow. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube ...
iphone se 2020 top

New iPhone SE Likely to Launch in April Based on Production Timeframe

Wednesday January 19, 2022 6:44 am PST by
Apple suppliers will begin producing display panels for the third-generation iPhone SE this month, with final assembly of the device likely to start in March, according to information shared by display industry consultant Ross Young. Based on this production timeframe, Young believes the third-generation iPhone SE is likely to launch in the second half of April, or perhaps in early May at...
AirPods 3 New Firmware Feature

Apple Updates AirPods 3 Firmware to Version 4C170

Tuesday January 18, 2022 11:46 am PST by
Apple today released a new 4C170 firmware update for the AirPods 3, an update from the prior 4C165 that was made available in December. Apple does not offer details on what's included in new firmware updates for the AirPods‌, so we don't know what improvements or bug fixes the new firmware brings. There is no standard way to upgrade the ‌AirPods‌‌ software, but firmware is...
iPad Air Feature 2 green

New Apple Products Filed in Regulatory Database, Likely Including New iPhone SE and iPad Air

Tuesday January 18, 2022 6:11 am PST by
Apple today filed unreleased iPhone and iPad models in the Eurasian Economic Commission database, as spotted by French blog Consomac. The filings likely represent the rumored third-generation iPhone SE, fifth-generation iPad Air, and potentially more. The unreleased iPhone models have the identifiers A2595, A2783, and A2784, while the unreleased iPad models have the identifiers A2588, A2589, ...
iphone 5g mmwave

U.S. Airlines Warn of 'Catastrophic' Crisis With Impending 5G Rollout, AT&T and Verizon Agree to Delay Around Airports

Tuesday January 18, 2022 10:35 am PST by
Verizon and AT&T's upcoming rollout of new C-Band 5G technology could cause chaos and lead to widespread delays of passenger and cargo flights, major U.S. airlines said on Monday in a letter sent to the White House National Economic Council, the FAA, and the FCC (via Reuters). "Unless our major hubs are cleared to fly, the vast majority of the traveling and shipping public will essentially...
microsoft office icons

Microsoft Releases Office for Mac Update With Full Apple Silicon Support in Excel

Tuesday January 18, 2022 4:15 am PST by
Microsoft has released a new version of its Office for Mac productivity suite that includes an updated Excel app with 100% native support for Apple silicon machines. According to the release notes accompanying version 16.57, Excel will now run natively on Macs powered by Apple's M1-series processors without having to use the Rosetta 2 translation layer, which means anyone using a Mac with an ...
appleeducation

Apple's US Education Store Now Requires Institution Verification to Buy Discounted Products

Wednesday January 19, 2022 2:22 am PST by
Apple is now requiring that customers in the United States verify that they're active students, teachers, or staff members at an educational institution in order to access education discounts on products. Previously, little verification was needed for customers to purchase products through Apple's education store in the United States. Apple's education stores offer models of the iPad and Mac ...
iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole thumb

ProMotion Now Expected to Remain Exclusive to iPhone 14 Pro Models, Not Expand to Entire Lineup

Sunday January 16, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Continuing the tradition set with the iPhone 13 Pro, only the highest-end iPhone 14 models will feature Apple's ProMotion display technology, according to a respected display analyst. Ross Young, who on multiple occasions has detailed accurate information about Apple's future products, said in a tweet that ProMotion will not be expanded to the entire iPhone 14 lineup and will remain...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID

Rumored iPhone 14 Pro Feature Delayed Until Next Year

Wednesday January 19, 2022 3:00 am PST by
Apple's long-rumored under-display Face ID technology will not be coming to the iPhone 14 Pro, according to recent reports. Based on the latest rumors, it now looks unlikely that the 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro and 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max will feature Face ID technology under the display as several reports claimed over the past year. Display industry consultant Ross Young, who often reveals ...