Leakers Claim Next MacBook Air Will Have White Notch and Bezels, Here's Why They Could Be Right

Apple is expected to equip the next MacBook Air with a notched mini-LED display and slimmer bezels, similar to the new MacBook Pros. But why would the screen borders and notch on a new MacBook Air be white, as recent rumors suggest, rather than black, like the Pro models? First let's look at the context for these leaks, and then consider Apple's possible reasons for such a design change.

MBA Mock White Front Blue

Color in Context

Leaker Jon Prosser claimed back in May that Apple's upcoming redesign of the ‌MacBook Air‌ will be available in various colors, similar to the current 24-inch iMac. Since then, reputable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has made the same claim, and more recently, reliable leaker Dylandkt has repeated the rumor, apparently based on information from his own sources.

prosser macbook air rendersbyian

Concept render by @RendersbyIan

Both Prosser and Dylandkt say the bezels on the colored MacBook Air models will be white or "off white," like the screen borders on Apple's 24-inch colored iMacs, along with an all-white keyboard. Both leakers also reiterate rumors that Apple's redesigned entry-level notebook will have several features adopted from the recently announced 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, including mini-LED display technology and the controversial camera notch.

macbook pro open keyboard
The obvious anomaly here is that the new MacBook Pros have a black notch and bezels, not to mention an all-black keyboard. To make sense of the possibility that Apple will make these areas white on the next MacBook Air, it's worth going back to the iMac and looking at Apple's reasoning behind the 24-inch desktop's colorful redesign, and that contentious white border.

Back to the iMac

When Apple unveiled the radically redesigned 24-inch iMac in April in a range of colors, some observers winced at the white screen borders (Apple calls them "light gray") and wondered why Apple hadn't extended the vibrant color scheme to the edges of the display, or at least used black for the bezels instead.

imac with accessories
"The borders are meant to complement the typical home design, for one, and blend into the background," Colleen Novielli, Apple's head of product and marketing, later explained in an interview. "The lack of the stark contrast provides a more seamless experience for the user."

Pitched in this way, Apple was claiming that black bezels would have provided too much contrast against most home decor, but it was also suggesting something else: White borders are there for casual Mac users, the consumer segment most likely to appreciate iMac colors designed "to bring a sense of brightness, optimism, and joy."

Office workers in brightly lit environments are also likely to warm to the same design attributes, while using apps with white backgrounds such as spreadsheets and word processors, which pair well with the light gray bezels.

m1 imac colors from above
Apple is essentially saying black borders are better suited to creative professionals – video editors and photographers who tend to work in darker environments, for example. And we don't need to wait for Apple's redesigned larger iMac to see if it has black bezels to prove this theory. Apple has already said the black notch and borders on the new MacBook Pros "look great in dark mode, which our pro users love."

It's easy to imagine Apple likewise claiming a white notch and bezels look "great" in light mode, but the current 24-inch iMac gives us another reason to believe the redesigned MacBook Air is likely to have off-white elements.

Back to Roots Redesign

original imac colors

When Apple revealed that the 24-inch iMac would be available in a range of fun colors, many were quick to note the similarity it bears to the original 1998 all-in-one desktop, the iMac G3, which was offered in several colors and paired with a light gray bezel.

Instantly recognizable thanks to its iconic rounded design amidst an ocean of boxy beige desktop PCs and monitors, the iMac G3 was loved by consumers and quickly became the best-selling computer on the market at the time.

iBook orange imac to go
Apple followed the original iMac in 1999 with the iBook G3, which continued the theme of combining color and light gray plastic, and added an off-white keyboard to boot. The iBook was essentially the portable version of the iMac. In ads, Apple even used the slogan "iMac to go. Introducing iBook" and "iMac unplugged."

From the return of the classic "hello" in joined-up handwriting in Apple's marketing material and software, to the latest all-in-one desktop Mac's bold colors, everything suggests Apple is in the midst of a back-to-roots design overhaul for its consumer Mac line. This explains why Apple changed the iMac's bezels to white after 14 years of black, and why it makes sense that the MacBook Air could follow in the same footsteps – even if it does mean a white notch.

prosser macbook air white notch rendersbyian

Concept render by @RendersbyIan

For all the rumors and leaks about the upcoming MacBook Air expected in 2022, check out our most recent MacBook Air rumor posts and our dedicated MacBook Air roundup.

Related Roundup: MacBook Air
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Air (Buy Now)
Related Forum: MacBook Air

Top Rated Comments

CrazyForCashews Avatar
12 months ago
My eyes are already burning.
Score: 48 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MBAir2010 Avatar
12 months ago
Th silver MacBook airs for last decade are just spectacular, brilliant and have a nicer silver finish,
or that is just me?


Attachment Image
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SW3029 Avatar
12 months ago
Please god just give us a 15 inch MacBook Air. I want a large screen Mac without having to buy a Pro machine.
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
aevan Avatar
12 months ago
They will be white because by the time it’s out, the drama over the black MBP notch will subside, so we can have a fresh new one about the white notch.
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
contacos Avatar
12 months ago
Seems logical because Apple has been

Colors = „Average Users“
No Colors = Pro

for years. Apparently Apple thinks Pro users do not like colors or that it would come off as „cheap“. Is that considered „colorism“?
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
StrangeNoises Avatar
12 months ago
It's a reasonable argument for why it'll have a white bezel, and one I agree with. Not much there about the notch though; and I still don't think that makes sense. If black, the notch "disappears" when full screen. If white, you're just not going to be able to get away from it.

Still thinking (and hoping) it'll be a white bezel XOR a notch. Either way is fine, but I'll lean to the former for one more reason: The notch only "disappears" against black anyway on a MiniLED or OLED screen. Not on an LCD. If they want to keep the price down on the MacBook Air, to keep it in its price bracket, I'd guess it still won't have Mini-LED. And therefore even a black notch would be visually undesirable.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

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. ...
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...
notch macbook air rounded mock

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

Wednesday October 20, 2021 7:42 am PDT by
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. Here Comes the Notch (Again) The next-generation MacBook Air will feature a notch in the display housing. This is ...
Flat MacBook Air 15 Feature

Larger 15-Inch MacBook Air Expected in 2023

Wednesday March 23, 2022 11:43 am PDT by
Apple is developing a larger 15-inch MacBook Air that could come out in 2023, according to research shared today by Display Supply Chain Consultants in its quarterly report. The full report is limited to those in the display industry who subscribe, but display analyst Ross Young provided a bit of color on what can be expected. Apple is working on a MacBook Air that's somewhere around 15...
iMac 27 Isolated Feature Blue

Have We Seen the Last of the 27-inch iMac?

Friday March 11, 2022 12:54 am PST by
Immediately after Apple's "Peek performance" event on Tuesday in which it unveiled the Mac Studio and 27-inch Studio Display, Apple quietly discontinued the Intel-powered 27-inch iMac. This left some observers wondering whether we'll see a new larger iMac sooner or later, or if the existing 24-inch iMac is as big and as powerful as it gets for the foreseeable future. After unveiling the Mac ...
14 16 inch 2021 mbps back to back feature

Gurman: Redesigned MacBook Air Delayed to Second Half of 2022, No New High-End MacBook Pro Likely Until Next Year

Sunday March 20, 2022 7:02 am PDT by
Apple has seemingly delayed the launch of the redesigned MacBook Air until later this year, and will likely not launch new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro models until 2023, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In his latest "Power On" newsletter, Gurman said that Apple originally planned to launch its new MacBook Air with "an all-new design, MagSafe, the M2 chip, and more" at the end of 2021...
macbook air rounded mock purple

MacBook Air and 'MacBook' With M2 Chips Slated for Launch Later This Year

Thursday March 10, 2022 1:52 pm PST by
Apple is working on the successor to the M1 chip, expected to be called the M2, and multiple rumors have already suggested that these chips are going to be used in machines that include a refreshed MacBook Air and a new version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro. A new report today from 9to5Mac once again reiterates these rumors, with the site claiming that Apple will introduce a MacBook Air and a...
iMac Pro 2022 27 and 24 iMac

Apple Not Planning to Launch Larger-Screened iMac

Friday March 11, 2022 2:38 pm PST by
Apple has no plans to release a larger-screened iMac, according to a new report from 9to5Mac. Citing unspecified sources with knowledge of Apple's product pipeline, the site says that Apple will not be introducing a bigger iMac "in the near future." With the launch of the Mac Studio, Apple discontinued the Intel-based 27-inch iMac, creating some confusion about the future of the iMac line....

Popular Stories

maxresdefault

Video Review: Four Days With the iPhone 14 Pro Max

Wednesday September 21, 2022 7:49 am PDT by
Apple on Friday released the new iPhone 14 models, and MacRumors videographer Dan picked one up on launch day. He's been using the iPhone 14 Pro Max non-stop since it came out, and over on the MacRumors YouTube channel, has shared his initial thoughts on the day-to-day experience with the latest iPhone. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Dan's mini review highlights...
iOS 16

Everything New With iOS 16.1 Beta 2: Lock Screen Charging Indicator, Copy Paste Alert Fix, Battery Status Updates and More

Tuesday September 20, 2022 12:17 pm PDT by
Apple today released the second beta of iOS 16.1, introducing some notable changes to charging indicators on the iPhone and also fixing a few bugs. We've rounded up all of the changes in the second beta below. Battery Status Bar Visual Charge Indicator Apple in iOS 16 added battery percentage to the battery icon in the status bar on Face ID iPhones, and in iOS 16.1 beta 2, improved the...
iOS 16 Copy Paste Permission Prompt

Apple to Release iOS 16 Update Next Week With Fix for Excessive Copy and Paste Prompts and iPhone 14 Pro Issues

Monday September 19, 2022 6:55 pm PDT by
iOS 16 introduced a new privacy feature that requires apps to receive a user's permission before accessing their iPhone's clipboard to paste text from other apps, but some users have experienced an issue that causes the prompt to appear excessively. According to The Wall Street Journal, Apple said it plans to address this issue in a software update that will be released next week. This news...
iPad Pro Big Ol Logo

Five Features Rumored for the New iPad Pro Expected Next Month

Wednesday September 21, 2022 1:36 am PDT by
Rumors suggest Apple will announce new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models as soon as next month. The new iPads will be the first update to the iPad Pro series since April 2021 and will be an overall incremental upgrade that brings new capabilities and functionality to the highest-end iPad. According to reports, Apple is planning an event for October to announce the new iPad Pro models, a...
ios 16 lock screen feature

Some iOS 16 Users Complain About Slow Spotlight Search and Battery Drain

Wednesday September 21, 2022 4:25 am PDT by
It's been nine days since Apple released iOS 16 to the public, bringing major changes to the Lock Screen, Messages, Maps, and more. In the days following the release, some users have encountered several issues on their iPhones, ranging from slow system performance to battery drain. In the past few days, iPhone 14 Pro users have shared specific bugs related to Apple's latest high-end iPhones, ...
realme dynamic island contest

Realme Crowdsourcing Ideas for Copying Apple's Dynamic Island

Tuesday September 20, 2022 7:52 am PDT by
Chinese smartphone maker realme is asking its "loyal fans" for ideas on how to copy Apple's Dynamic Island from the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. In a challenge, realme says, "the UI around the camera hole could morph into different shapes and sizes to display incoming phone calls, alerts, notifications, and more," precisely like Apple's Dynamic Island. The company finds this idea...
iPhone 14 Pro Max SIM Card Plastic Spacer

iPhone 14 Pro Max Teardown Provides Closer Look at Unused SIM Tray Area on U.S. Model and More

Tuesday September 20, 2022 8:42 am PDT by
Repair website iFixit today shared an in-depth teardown of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, providing a closer look at the device's internals. Notably, the teardown includes a photo of the plastic spacer that replaced the SIM card tray on the U.S. model. All four iPhone 14 models sold in the U.S. no longer have a physical SIM card tray and rely entirely on digital eSIMs. The teardown confirms that...
iphone 14 pro blue image

iPhone 14 Pro Customers Plagued With Issues Just Days After Release

Tuesday September 20, 2022 2:20 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max officially launched this past Friday, and since their release, users have faced several bugs and issues, ranging from poor battery life, AirDrop not working, camera shaking, and more. The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max all shipped with the original version of iOS 16, but awaiting customers out of the box was iOS 16.0.1. The update specifically for ...