Last Updated on March 11, 2021 by Filip Poutintsev
Introduced in 2008, MacBook Air is one of the thinnest and lightest laptops by Apple and one of its most selling products besides the iPhone. It is also the most environmentally friendly MacBook because it is created from 100% recycled Aluminum.
It is a very lightweight laptop and has been one of the highest selling laptops for both students and corporate professionals.
There are some advantages and disadvantages of buying and using a MacBook Air that should be considered. They have been discussed below:
Table of Contents
Pros of MacBook Air
1. Long Battery Life
One of the biggest selling points of a MacBook Air for students is its long battery life. During the Laptop Mag Battery Test that involved continuous WiFi use, it survived for 14 hours. There are only a handful of laptops that offer this kind of battery life. This could be a great point for a student who needs to use a laptop all day without having to charge it time and again. It is worth noting that battery life depends on several factors such as app usage and external temperature.
2. Thin and Light
Another major selling point of a MacBook Air is that it is thin and light. It is 0.68 inches in thickness and weighs 2.96 pounds. Again, this could come in handy for students who must carry a laptop around all day with their heavy textbooks since this laptop will not create additional weight. It is also a plus point for any corporate professional since it is easier to carry around, anywhere you go.
3. Retina Display
The MacBook Air has a resolution of 2560X1600 with 4 million pixels which leads to a very sharp display. The 2018 MacBook Air has 40% more colours than its predecessors. The text is also very sharp and praiseworthy. The borders on the display are 50% thinner which leads to a better display.
4. Internal Storage
Another selling point of a MacBook Air is an internal SSD (solid-state drive) in both the 11-inch and 13-inch models. It has flash storage of 128GB. This is a plus point because SSD-based internal storage means that the speed and lifespan of a device is improved since it is 25 to 100 times faster than a typical hard disk drive. This results in quicker file transfers and shorter boot time. An SSD is also more durable since it has no moving parts.
5. Useful Apps
MacBook Airs come with applications for both playing and working. Some of these apps are office productivity apps like Numbers, Pages, Keynote, Notes, Calendar, Maps and Reminders. They also come with apps like the famous iMovie which is a video editing app and the music production app called GarageBand.
Cons of MacBook Air
1. High Price
One of the biggest drawbacks of a MacBook Air is its price. The newest model of the MacBook Air starts at $999. There are several other options with similar if not better specifications that cost lesser than a MacBook Air. If you are on a budget, it is definitely better to look at other options.
2. Outdated CPU
For a student looking for a laptop, they will probably want something that lasts all through college. The 2015 MacBook Air uses an Intel 5th Generation Core Series Processor and the 2017 MacBook Air uses a 7th Generation Core Series Processor. Unless web surfing, document editing, checking emails and social media are the only things you will be doing on the MacBook, it is better to look at other options.
3. No Touch Screen
A touch screen can be beneficial to a graphic design student or anyone who needs a touch screen to complete their work efficiently. If you want something you can write papers on or to take notes in class or watch movies in bed, you will likely want a MacBook Air and an iPad. This increases the cost, so it is probably better if you look into some other options. There are several more on the market.
4. No USB Type-C
The MacBook Air has the standard USB Type-A ports and lacks a Type-C or Thunderbolt 3 ports. This is a disadvantage because, in the future, peripherals will come with USB Type-C connectors that won’t work with the Air. USB Type-C ports allow charging of the laptop, sending data to peripherals and output to multiple monitors via a single wire.
Thunderbolt 3 ports are USB Type-C ports that have extra speed and the ability to power dual 4K monitors via a single connection. In 2017, having one of these ports allows you a connection to a single docking station that can charge your laptop and connect to external displays with a single cable.
5. Limited Hardware Upgrade
Another drawback of a MacBook Air is the limited upgradeability on the hardware. There are customizations that can be made before purchase but there is no extra room for processor, memory and storage upgrades later on. There are other options like Windows if customization after purchase if something you require or would like.
Looking at these advantages and disadvantages, it is clear that a MacBook Air is not suitable for everyone. If you are a student with no budget or a corporate professional who needs a sleek and easy to carry around the device, a MacBook Air is the way to go. However, if you are on a tighter budget, there are several options of the market that offer a laptop with higher specifications at a lower price.