What’s New in MacBook Air 2014

A lowdown of the new specs you can find in Apple’s cheaper notebooks starting today

By on April 29th, 2014 14:59 GMT

If you bought a MacBook Air yesterday, you probably hadn’t heard the rumors that Apple was going to up the ante the next day with a new line of notebooks featuring faster processors and more storage. But for those of you who were in the loop, Apple not only delivered those two upgrades today, but the company went even further.


Price


High on the list of every gadget buyer is, of course, price. For many, it’s actually the most important factor when they review their options. For the undecided types, Apple has made it a no-brainer to go for the MacBook Air over anything else. The laptop starts at $899 / €899 now and has been rebranded as “the perfect everyday notebook.” Chances are it actually is.

Battery

Although Apple puts processor speed at the top of the upgrade list, battery life is considerably more important for many users who don’t plan on busting out the latest shooters on their ultra-sleek notebooks.

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In fact, for many users, the MacBook Air is mostly an Internet/video machine with the benefits of OS X on the side. And for these people, battery life is crucial. Not surprisingly, Apple took note of this and expanded the mileage to 12 hours on the 13-inch model and 9-hours on its smaller sibling, the 11-inch version.

Processor

Featuring fourth-generation Intel Core i5 and Core i7 processors, the new Airs are not only power-efficient, but also blazing-fast (at least in their particular category).

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“Whatever the task, fourth-generation Intel Core processors with Intel HD Graphics 5000 are up to it. From editing photos to browsing the web, everything happens ultrafast — while using less energy. And all that power is encased in an incredibly thin 0.68-inch unibody design that weighs only 2.38 pounds,” Apple says.

Storage

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Now you get 128GB of Flash storage as standard on the entry-level 11-inch model, and you can go as high as 512GB if you’re so adventurous / rich. Build-to-order options are available for extra dollars, as usual.

Wireless

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802.11ac technology isn’t exactly breaking news, but for those who are buying their first new Mac in years, Wi-Fi will be noticeably faster. Apple explains:

“With the latest 802.11ac technology, MacBook Air takes Wi-Fi speeds over the top. Connect to an 802.11ac base station — including AirPort Extreme or AirPort Time Capsule — and experience wireless performance up to 3x faster than the previous generation of Wi-Fi. 802.11ac also delivers expanded range, so you can work more freely than ever.”

OS X and Free iLife & iWork

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Apple’s MacBook Air 2014 models are also the first to ship with OS X Mavericks pre-installed. And for people who buy a new Air, the Mac maker offers its iLife and iWork suites completely free of charge.

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