It’s heavily implied that Apple is working on an affordable successor to the outdated MacBook Air. It may or may not become part of the MacBook range or retain the Air branding. Regardless of the branding, the new computer is expected to cost US 999 and is scheduled for this year.
MacBook Air refresh?
Taiwanese website Economic Daily News chimed in with a report claiming the 13-inch laptop will be powered by Intel’s Kaby Lake Refresh 14nm processors. This is because the chipmaker won’t be ready with its 10nm Cannon Lake chips in time for Apple’s targeted launch – in fact, they might very well be delayed until 2019’s end. The upcoming Whiskey Lake chips, which are suitable for Apple’s laptops, won’t arrive in time as well. With Intel not keeping up with Cupertino’s schedule, it’s not surprising that the trillion dollar company is working on its own silicon to break free from such compromises. However, these chips allegedly won’t be ready until 2020 or so.
The Kaby Lake Refresh series contains quad-core Core i5 and Core i7 chips clocked between 1.6GHz – 1.9GHz, with Turbo Boost speeds between 3.4GHz – 4.2GHz. Graphics are handled by Intel’s UHD Graphics 620 integrated GPU and there’s support for up to 32GB of DDR4/LPDDR3 RAM.
This implies the upcoming laptop will be significantly faster than the 12-inch MacBooks, which work with Intel’s ultra-low-power M3 chips. It will also perform better than the latest MacBook Air, which uses 2015 Core i5 and Core i7 processors.
Additionally, Apple could be updating the 12-inch MacBooks with Intel’s new Amber Lake chips, as well as reworking the Mac Mini with the aforementioned Kaby Lake Refresh processors. New iMacs with up-to-date silicon and display upgrades are rumoured as well. However, it’s all just that at this point – rumours.