Feeds

15in MacBook Air will go HEAD TO HEAD with MacBook Pro in April

Vendor spills beans at trade show

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

Apple has a 15 inch MacBook Air in the works and it's coming out in April, a Mac accessories manufacturer has told Electric Pig.

The unnamed accessories maker dropped the tip at CU Exposed, a trade fair for MacBook accessories on 13 March. Currently only available in the 11 inch and 13 inch form factors, the debut of 15 inch MacBook Air will put Apple's slender Air range more directly in competition with the MacBook Pro line.

Macbook Range, credit Apple

Pros are cheaper and bulkier but pack greater processing power and more ports. Airs have no Ethernet ports, or optical CD/DVD drives, encouraging users to use Wi-Fi and store content in the cloud.

The 13 inch Air 128 GB (1.7GHz Intel i5) costs £1,099, compared to £999 for the 13 inch Pro, which packs a 500GB hard drive and 2.4GHz i5 Intel Core chip.

A 15 inch Air has been expected since the Air range launched with a 13.3 inch model in January 2008. An 11 inch Air was introduced at the end of 2010 and the discontinuation of the simple MacBook has left the £849, 1.08kg model as Apple's cheapest laptop.

Apple has cannibalised its own market share before: something it famously did by including the iPod functionality on the iPhone – which has seen iPod sales dive – dropping 15 per cent between 2010 and 2011, from 50.3 million to just 42.6 million.

Still, the Pro might hang on to a place at top end of the market – for desktop users who want 17 inch screens, some punchier chip power, and possibly the ability to insert a CD. Video editors and others requiring hefty storage capacity will be unlikely to switch to the Air range because the flash storage drives – the only type that will fit in the slender Air case – become painfully pricey at higher capacities.

To cater to users handling video and other big files, Apple will need to keep a beefy Pro – perhaps the 17 inch model with some hefty hard disk storage. The current 17 inch Pro comes with a 750GB hard disk drive included in the £2,099 price. Swapping that for a 512GB flash storage drive in the current model adds £880 to the price tag. Users requiring serious storage will most likely prefer to stick to the Pro. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
NVIDIA claims first 64-bit ARMv8 SoC for Androids
Mile-High 'Denver' Tegra K1 successor said to rival PC performance
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.