Rumored 'Low-Cost MacBook' Could Be $699 MacBook Air

Rumors out of Asia captured the attention of Apple fans last year by claiming that Apple plans to offer a more affordable 2024 MacBook for budget-conscious customers and students in order to compete with Google's popular low-cost Chromebook models.

In fact, this rumor may have already come to fruition with the news last week that Walmart has started selling the MacBook Air with M1 chip in the United States for $699.

Walmart MacBook Air M1
Apple discontinued the MacBook Air with the M1 chip earlier this month, following the launch of new MacBook Air models with its latest-generation M3 chip. But it looks as if Apple intends to continue producing the M1 MacBook Air specifically for sale through Walmart, rather than through its own stores.

It is the first time that customers have been able to purchase a Mac directly from Walmart. The U.S. retailer does not sell any other Macs. These are not refurbished Macs either – they are brand new and appear to be fresh inventory. As Daring Fireball's John Gruber notes, Apple has not kept excess stock in inventory for bestselling products for decades, as per CEO Tim Cook's favored method of Apple's operations. Prior to being discontinued, Apple sold the M1 model for $999.

The M1 MacBook Air first came out in 2020, so it is four years old at this point, but the Apple silicon chip is still more than adequate for day-to-day tasks. The configuration being sold for $699 includes the M1 chip, 256GB of storage, and 8GB of RAM/unified memory, with Gold, Silver, and Space Gray color options available. Since Walmart made its announcement, Best Buy has undercut the retailer by offering the same model for $649, but how long this further discount will last is unclear.

Last October, a rumor out of Korea claimed Apple intended to sell 13-inch MacBook models at a planned price point of around $700 or less. The rumor suggested that while Apple has yet to fully commit to mass producing the low-cost Macs, they were "more likely than ever" to make it to market because of a sharp fall in iPad and MacBook sales.

The rumors came after Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that Apple was considering launching a low-cost MacBook in 2024 to boost ailing MacBook shipments, with a target of shifting 8-10+ million units per year.

Related Roundup: MacBook Air
Related Forum: MacBook Air

Popular Stories

iPhone 16 Pro Sizes Feature

iPhone 16 Series Is Just Two Months Away: Everything We Know

Monday July 15, 2024 4:44 am PDT by
Apple typically releases its new iPhone series around mid-September, which means we are about two months out from the launch of the iPhone 16. Like the iPhone 15 series, this year's lineup is expected to stick with four models – iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Plus, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Pro Max – although there are plenty of design differences and new features to take into account. To bring ...
macbook pro january

Best Buy's Black Friday in July Sale Takes Up to $700 Off M3 MacBook Pro for Members

Monday July 15, 2024 11:05 am PDT by
Best Buy's "Black Friday in July" sale is in full swing today, and in addition to a few iPad Air discounts we shared earlier, there are also some steep markdowns on the M3 MacBook Pro. You will need a My Best Buy Plus or Total membership in order to get some of these deals. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Best Buy. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small...
ipaos 18 image playground

Apple Releases First iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 Public Betas

Monday July 15, 2024 1:16 pm PDT by
Apple today provided the first betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to public beta testers, bringing the new software to the general public for the first time since the Worldwide Developers Conference in June. Apple has seeded three developer betas so far, and the first public beta includes the same content that's in the third developer beta. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...

Apple's AirPods Pro 2 vs. Samsung's Galaxy Buds3 Pro

Saturday July 13, 2024 8:00 am PDT by
Samsung this week introduced its latest earbuds, the Galaxy Buds3 Pro, which look quite a bit like Apple's AirPods Pro 2. Given the similarities, we thought we'd compare Samsung's new earbuds to the AirPods Pro. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Design wise, you could potentially mistake Samsung's Galaxy Buds3 Pro for the AirPods Pro. The Buds3 Pro have the same...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

10 Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Monday July 8, 2024 5:00 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models simultaneously, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different – already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
Generic iOS 18 Feature Real Mock

Apple Seeds Revised Third Betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to Developers

Monday July 15, 2024 10:09 am PDT by
Apple today seeded updated third betas iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to developers for testing purposes, with the software coming a week after Apple initially released the third betas. Registered developers are able to opt into the betas by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the "Beta Updates" option, and toggling on the ‌iOS 18/iPadOS 18‌ Developer Beta ...