Feeds
80%

Apple MacBook Air Early 2008

Style over substance - and thank God too

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Review Apple's MacBook Air has polarised opinion, not just between the company's fans and everyone else, but even within the Mac community itself. It's expensive, it's arguably underpowered and certainly has very limited expansion opportunities.

On the other hand, it's ridiculously thin and is a truly gorgeous-looking object. We were sceptical about the Air when it was announced, back in January. But now it's available there was nothing for it: we had to try it out ourselves.

There's no denying the Air's beauty, even if aesthetics don't matter to you. Closed, the laptop's lid and base are gracefully curved, a trick that accentuates its incredible thinness, making it stand out even alongside Apple's still-pretty-thin MacBook Pro.

Apple MacBook Air

Apple's MacBook Air: style over substance

The Air's perhaps the wrong side of a kilo - it feels heavier than, say, an Eee PC or a Toshiba Portégé R500 - but the weight comes from its aluminium shell, which gives the Air a reassuring solidity. It's not a ruggedised machine, sure, but the lid doesn't flex like the R500's does, and being metal it'll be more resistant to the bumps and scrapes a laptop taken on the road will inevitably take.

On the left-hand side, you'll find the Air's MagSafe power port. The unit's 45W AC adaptor is wonderfully compact and equipped with Apple's customary simple but effective fold-out cable wrapping mechanism. It has a new connector, but that's only because the regular one won't fit onto the Air when the laptop's sitting on a desk. But we tried the Air with a regular MacBook Pro power brick and it worked just fine.

Being as curved as it is, the Air barely has a front worthy of the name. Closed, the laptop's edge is just 4mm thick and, at the front, home to a white LED that pulsates when the Air's asleep, and an infrared port for the - now optional - Mac remote control. The rear is unadorned, the hinge section fitting flush with the edge of the lid and base. Like the MacBook Pro, the Air's hinge is covered with a plastic panel that provides a window for wireless signals.

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ford's B-Max: Fiesta-based runaround that goes THUNK
... when you close the slidey doors, that is ...
All aboard the Poo Bus! Ding ding, route Number Two departing
Only another three days of pooing and I can have a ride!
Official: European members prefer to fondle Apple iPads
Only 7 of 50 parliamentarians plump for Samsung Galaxy S
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
Dragon Age Inquisition: Our chief weapons are...
Bioware's fantasy forces in fine fettle
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.