Apple MacBook Air revamp snapped, posted on web
Prototype points to new design with more ports
Apple fans are eagerly anticipating Wednesday's Mac-centric company announcement, particularly since a few snaps of what are claimed to be internals of a prototype 13.3in MacBook Air popped up online this weekend.
The snap, posted by Engadget, shows motherboard, four separate batteries, a bank of Flash chips - presumably the machine's solid-state storage - connected by Sata, plus Micro DisplayPort, USB, SD card slot and MagSafe power connectors. A further port can be seen, but it's clearly not USB - FireWire 800, perhaps?
The metal case appears around the edge.
Subsequently, AppleInsider claimed its moles had said that while the shot shows a 13.3in model, Apple is also preparing the much-rumoured 11.6in Air, both of which will be offered alongside each other, the latter as a cheaper, more portable version.
Both models will be unibody machines, with single-button trackpads. The machines will be as thick as the USB port they contain. Think of a flatter MacBook Pro, we'd say, so flat sides rather than the taper-to-a-thin edge design we saw with the original Air. You can see the same black, plastic wireless port at the back that can be seen on the latest MacBooks, for instance.
All will undoubtedly be revealed on Wednesday evening. ®
Thin is good because it makes the machine lighter.
Lots of people are willing to trade performance for portability, me among them. I don't want to lug a 13.3in MacBook Pro around shows all day when I can be much more comfortable with a 13.3in MacBook Air, a machine that handles with aplomb all the word processing and lightweight image editing that I throw at it.
So that it lasts for 20 minutes instead of the 5 it would with only one?
it's a prototype?
Apple's been making hulka-huge tailored-dimension batteries for a while, but I'm guessing the prototypes get off the shelf parts jury-rigged together
Perhaps the juice being pumped out by one single battery isn't enough to power the laptop, so throw in 3 more batteries (for weight distribution as mentioned earlier), to up the total juice output capacity. Perhaps having 4 smaller, less output, batteries is cheaper than 1 large output battery too? At the very least, perhaps they're trying to avoid a flaming laptop a-la-Dell by distributing potental flares across 4 batteries...
In the current generation, the Air is 1.36 kg, the 13.3" MacBook Pro is 2.04kg. So the latter is 50% heavier. I guess it may actually work the other way to that which Tony Smith suggests: if you've stripped out all the weight then what you're left with is smaller, so you can shrink the case. If you keep the screen the same size, that obviously means reducing the depth.
That's if you're brutally functional about it. In reality, most electrical gadgets sell better if you can generate an emotional bond between the purchaser and the device. Hence why adverts nowadays are full of words like 'experience'. It's still essentially a trade-off with the one design aspect being played against the others, but making devices better looking helps to improve sales. Apple are just one of the companies that understands this and definitely didn't discover it.