New MacBook Air release date, specs & features rumours – Macworld UK

When is the brand-new MacBook Air for 2016 coming out? Will certainly Apple unveil a MacBook Air along with a Retina display at its launch event on Monday 21 March?

In March 2015, we were convinced that Apple was concerning to provide the MacBook Air a Retina display but, while Apple did indeed update the MacBook Air that month, it didn’t get hold of Retina. (Instead, Apple launched a brand-brand-new MacBook line that’s super-thin, super-light and does offer that high-resolution display.) yet does that mean Apple won’t improve the MacBook Air along with a Retina display in the future?

In this post we investigate the hints and clues pointing to an imminent MacBook Air update: including release date, specs & rumoured brand-new features.

You could additionally adore to read our New 12in MacBook 2015 review | Which Mac? Ideal Mac buyers guide | When Will certainly Apple update the Mac mini | Apple rumours and predictions for 2016

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Release date

Update, 11 March 2016: The invitations have actually gone out for an Apple launch event on 21 March, starting at 5pm UK time.

Apple's 21 March iPhone SE launch event inviteApple's 21 March iPhone SE launch event invite

Will there be brand-new MacBooks at this launch event? It’s definitely a possibility: Apple regularly launches brand-new laptops at this time of year, and it’s been a year since the last major MacBook refresh. yet we’ve been getting the sense lately that Apple is attempting to play down expectations on the Mac front, and there aren’t any hints in the invite to suggest laptop-related announcements.

We do expect the iPhone SE and the iPad Air 3 on the 21 March, as well as – partly suggested by the phrase ‘Let us loop you in’ – updates related to the Apple Watch. Read all the latest rumours concerning Apple’s next big launch event and follow the announcements on the night (it starts at 10am PDT, which translates to 5pm UK time) on our dedicated page: How to watch Apple’s 21 March iPhone SE launch event.

New MacBook Air 2016 release date rumoursNew MacBook Air 2016 release date rumours

We originally expected a brand-new MacBook Air along with Retina display to launch on 9 March 2015 at Apple’s Spring Forward event. And were rather surprised As soon as we got something else: a Retina MacBook, yes, yet one along with a 12in display and a USB-C port (and pretty few various other ports), a brand-new strand of products for Apple’s MacBook laptop line-up.

Less glamorously, Apple’s MacBook Air did get hold of an update at the same time, along with new, faster processors, faster flash storage and much better graphics, but the screen and overall design remained the same. Still no Retina display for the Air line.

That left us wondering exactly what Apple’s plans are for the future of its MacBook line-up. We think the company intends to replace the MacBook Air along with the brand-new MacBook eventually, yet the MacBook Air could stay portion of the line-up for some time yet, and could still get hold of an upgrade to the Retina display As soon as it’s refreshed in 2016.

MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Exactly how to watch Apple’s 21 March launch event live stream

Apple Will certainly stream its 21 March launch event live, and it starts at 10am PDT, which is 5pm UK time (that’s 5pm UK time, not 6pm as we said previously – apologies for the confusion!). It’s most likely to last between one and two hours. We expect to hear several iPhone SE-related announcements, yet there could be some Mac news too.

You can easily watch the launch event live on Apple’s website from 5pm UK time, on an iPad or iPhone, on a Mac, on an Apple TV, or on a PC.

If you’re on an iPad or iPhone, you’ll have to view that page in Safari on a device operating iOS 4.2 or later.

If you’re on a Mac, you’ll have to view that page in Safari 4 or later on a system operating OS X 10.6 or later.

If you’re on Apple TV, it’ll have to be a second- or third-generation model along with tvOS 5.0.2 or later.

For much more on this, check our post explaining How to watch the iPhone SE launch event live, which Will certainly additionally feature our liveblog, offering expert analysis of the announcements as they come. We’ll get hold of past the hype and company statements to tell you exactly what the announcements really mean for you.

Podcast: exactly what to expect from Apple’s 21 March launch event

If you’d very listen to us talk concerning Monday’s product launches very compared to read concerning them, you’re in luck.

On 18 March, the UK Tech Weekly Podcast discussed whether we’re most likely to get hold of some brand-new Macs at Monday’s Apple press event (among rather a bit of various other vaguely tech-related nonsense). If you’d adore to listen in, the Apple segment begins at 28:45.

The UK Tech Weekly Podcast comes out every Friday. You can easily subscribe for regular updates, and remember to adore and comment on the podcast if you enjoyed it, or have actually advice for topics we can easily discuss in future.

MacBook Air updates at Apple’s March press event

If Apple does provide the MacBook Air a Retina refresh, then it would certainly be logical to expect brand-new 11in and 13in laptops in the spring of 2016. brand-new MacBook Air models arrived in April of 2014, and in March of 2015.

Apple is widely expected to hold a major press event in March 2016, along with several pundits predicting that this Will certainly fall on 21 March and see the launch of the iPhone SE and iPad Air 3.

It’s definitely feasible that Apple Will certainly take this opportunity to roll out updated MacBooks, and it would certainly fit the timing of previous years; we chance they do. yet our suspicion – based on nothing much more scientific compared to a sense that Apple is attempting to play down the opportunity so that individuals aren’t disappointed As soon as nothing appears – is that Retina MacBooks Will certainly have actually to wait. Until WWDC in the summer, perhaps.

MacBook Air updates at WWDC 2016

In late November 2015, a report from the Economic Everyday News suggests that the MacBook Air Will certainly see a substantial update in 2016. However, the report suggest that the update to the MacBook Air could not arrive until WWDC in June, which Will certainly be much more compared to a year after Apple last updated the MacBook Air. According to the report, the brand-new MacBook Air models are expected to come out in the third quarter of next year, which suggests that there could be a wait after the June unveiling.

The Economic Everyday News report notes that it’s been eight years since the MacBook Air launched and it’s not been redesigned in that time, suggesting that time is ripe for a makeover.

Read next: 16 tips to improve MacBook battery life

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Price

The last time that there was a Mac laptop that had much more advanced specs compared to a much more expensive model was the old MacBooks (aluminium, then white and black, and then eventually aluminum again). These older MacBook models were eventually discontinued and the Rate of the MacBook Air was low to make it the brand-new entry level (As soon as the MacBook Air initially launched it was rather overpriced for the specs, merely adore the current Retina MacBook).

It appears most likely that the same Will certainly happen along with the brand-new MacBook models eventually replacing the MacBook Airs, at a lower price, yet for now that appears a long means off.

The Economic Everyday News report suggests the brand-new MacBook Air Will certainly cost much more compared to it does currently As soon as it does launch. The 11in MacBook Air starts at £749, while the entry level 13in model costs £849.

If the 11in MacBook Air is removed from the line up perhaps the cost of entry of the 13in model Will certainly reduce to the level that the 11in model is currently, along with a rumoured 15in model coming in at a better price.

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Dimensions 

If Apple does update the MacBook Air range, exactly what dimensions ought to we expect?

New MacBook Air 2016 release date rumoursNew MacBook Air 2016 release date rumours

As mentioned above, rumours suggest that the 11in MacBook Air Will certainly be discontinued, after all, the 11in MacBook Air is both smaller sized compared to the MacBook and the brand-new iPad Pro.

However, 9to5Mac points out that the brand-new 13in and 15in MacBook Air models could be additional dimensions to the MacBook range. That site predicts that some time in 2016 or 2017 we Will certainly have actually merely two ranges of Mac laptops: the MacBook at the ultraportable level, and the much more advanced MacBook Pro. Maybe the 17in MacBook Pro Will certainly make a comeback too, along with a 4K display.

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Specs & brand-new features

These brand-new MacBook Air models are said to be thinner and lighter, along with internal spec enhancements. Apparently, the brand-new MacBook Air Will certainly feature brand-new batteries, cooling modules, and chassis, according to the Economic Everyday News.

We additionally expect to see USB Type-C across the range, especially now that Intel has actually integrated Thunderbolt 3 in to USB-C.

The next-generation MacBook Air is additionally most likely to feature Intel Skylake processors, as well as graphics and RAM upgrades.

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Retina display

The pointer that the MacBook Air Will certainly feature a Retina display has actually been long operating yet those rumours were prior to the launch of the 12in Retina MacBook and the iPad Pro – suggesting the signtings of the Retina display some believed was destined for the MacBook Air was As an alternative for these models.

Does this mean that there Will certainly be no Retina display on the brand-new MacBook Air As soon as (or if) it launches. If Apple prefers to preserve the Rate down maybe not. Or perhaps the newly rumoured 15in Macbook Air Will certainly feature a Retina display, while the 13in model Will certainly lack the higher res display, yet come in at a lower price, one similar to the current Rate of the 11in MacBook Air.

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Touch ID and Force Touch

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Force TouchNew MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Force Touch

There are additionally reports to suggest that it’ll boast Touch ID within its Trackpad, which could additionally get hold of the Force Touch upgrade that was offered to the 13in MacBook Pro on 9 March, and comes along with the brand-new MacBook.

Touch ID is the fingerprint sensor that’s built-in to the Residence button of the iPhone 5S, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. It’s additionally used to make Apple Pay much more secure.

According to an Independent report, Touch ID for the Mac line would certainly require a dedicated chip to be built in to the device.

The rumour started along with Taiwanese blog AppleCorner, which cited sources in the supply chain. Apparently the Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad could get hold of a biometric update too, enabling users to make Apple Pay payments on the web, yet both those accessories were updated alongside the launch of a new 4K iMac so that appears unlikely to happen any time soon. 

New MacBook Air 2016 rumours: Will certainly the MacBook Air be discontinued?

With the advent of the 12in MacBook and the brand-new 12.9in iPad Pro, it’s no surprise that rumourmongers are starting to predict that the 11in MacBook Air, along with a smaller sized screen compared to either of those devices, Will certainly be discontinued. The iPad Pro could indeed be viewed by Apple as a alternative for the 11in MacBook Air if Apple CEO Tim Cook’s comments to the Telegraph are taken in to account (published on 1 December 2015). 

Following the launch of the iPad Pro, Cook told the Telegraph: “I believe if you’re looking at a PC, why would certainly you buy a PC any more? No really, why would certainly you buy one?

“Yes, the iPad Pro is a alternative for a notebook or a desktop for many, several people. They Will certainly start using it and conclude they no longer have to use anything else, various other compared to their phones.”

However, ought to Apple discontinue the 11in MacBook Air, it does remove the lower Rate of entry from the line-up.

It could not merely be the 11in MacBook Air that is discontinued. As soon as the brand-new MacBook launched on 9 March 2015, analysts began to suspect that the MacBook Air could not be about for much longer.

“This wasn’t the MacBook Air, yet As an alternative leaped past the Air,” said Jan Dawson, chief analyst at Jackdaw Research. “They kept the MacBook Air about merely as they do along with older iPhones, yet the MacBook is now in the same placement as the newest iPhone. That makes me wonder if the Air Will certainly go away over time.”

Carolina Milanesi, chief of research and head of US business for Kantar WorldPanel Comtech, additionally predicted a contraction of Apple’s line-up. “All [notebooks] have to be much more mobile, so something adore the Air doesn’t have to be branched out anymore,” she said of the differenciation Apple made for the line since its introduction much more compared to eight years ago. “And it’s to Apple’s benefit not to have actually so several ‘families’ of Macs.”

Over time, it appears most likely that the MacBook Air range could be discontinued and eventually replaced by a Retina MacBook range at a lower price.

We’ll be updating this post as much more write-up concerning the rumoured Retina MacBook Air emerges so check spine from time to time for the latest news.

Wondering which MacBook is Ideal for you? Read: MacBook Air vs MacBook Pro comparison review: 13in Apple laptops compared

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