What are your primary uses of the MBA?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by jjchando, Feb 7, 2008.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Feb 5, 2008
    Other than browsing the web wirelessly, using the features of leopard, and looking at its beauty what do you use your MBA for?

    (I am debating whether or not to keep my 1.6 SSD and help in figuring out what I would need it for would be appreciated :D)
  2. macrumors regular

    Jan 29, 2008
    I travel a lot for my work. My MBA is going to become my "field" computer. I will be using Word, Excel, and Acrobat with it. Google earth is also something that helps me a lot in my work as well.

    Of course, e-mail and web access are important. Because one of the sites I have to use requires windows explorer, I have installed a virtual machine as well as windows XP on it.
  3. macrumors 6502

    Nov 9, 2004
    I use mine a computer to use when sitting on the sofa, or on the road. I have moved all my photos to it and use it for my photos (I like the gestures in iphoto). Anyhow, I have a secondary computer (iMac), but haven't used it much since I've had the air. The air is nice, not a computer to have an the only computer you have, but most certainly a great portable computer.
  4. macrumors regular


    Oct 20, 2004
    New York, NY (Chelsea)
    I use it for doing Keynote presentations. Hook it up to a projector via the VGA adaptor. The only sad thing is that the crummy projector does not support HD resolution and I have dumb down my presentations.

    I don't think my boss will give me the $$$ to buy a HD projector also I don't think I want to schlepp one around. Most conference rooms these days have a flat screen plasma/lcd anyway.
  5. macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2008
    Shell access to headless test machines and development boxes.
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2005
    Orlando, Florida
    I'm using mine as a replacement for my main work laptop. I work as a consultant and onsite with clients all the time; the MBA works great for what I am doing, which includes a Fusion session running XP Pro in a VM.
  7. macrumors 68000


    Oct 5, 2004
    Internet, MS Office 2008, All Bundled Software, Photoshop Elements, WC3, Command and Conquer Generals

    This is going to be my main computer, and it's perfect for my needs. I'm very mobile with my current iBook G4, this MBA will just be faster, thinner, lighter, and more efficient. I can't wait!
  8. macrumors member

    Jan 15, 2008
    Screwing around... mostly.

    My computing needs are already well covered with other things. This will serve as a nice couch internet device and as a lightweight travel entertainment tool. I would love to use it daily to replace my POS work laptop but unfortunately we are required to stick to windows (and proprietary hardware, etc...)

    In terms of software: web, email, itunes, iphoto, office, occasionally photoshop and lightroom but that's mostly my girlfriend's use and she has a MBP which is more powerful and capable. This one is mainly my toy (although she's welcome to use it).
  9. macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2008
    i don't think I'll be adding anything new to this thread, but then again there's no need to. It's pretty crazy for anyone to hope to use their shiny new MBA for anything other than the basics. That's the truth, and so the MBA may or may not be suited to you, depending on your needs. Personally I'm just a university student, so I only need a laptop for word-processing and internet, and maybe I bit of music playback when I'm bored. So the MBA is perfect for my needs. (Yes, I coulda bought a regular MB, but I also happen to be a rather stylish uni student.)

    If you wanna do more with the MBA, stiff cheddar. :) You'll have to find a better notebook (MBP or maybe a MB), or else a decent desktop.
  10. macrumors 65816


    Jul 6, 2000
    I've been using a MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz (160GB 7K drive). I picked up the MacBook Air 13" 1.8GHz (64GB SSD). I like the form factor a lot but I am having to rethink what I need a laptop to do. I've decided, for example, to move my iTunes files (tunes, movies, etc.) to my desktop to conserve storage space. I've removed Photoshop CS3 and only use it on my desktop.

    I've come to realize during this transition the three things I use a laptop for most:
    a) To surf the net (Safari)
    b) To read and respond to email (Mail)
    c) To take notes and write articles (TextEdit)

    Of course there are other things I use in support of those three such as Address Book, Calendar, Dashboard, Preview, and Calendar.

    I'll probably add iWork this week so I can have a spreadsheet (Numbers).
  11. macrumors regular

    Feb 5, 2008
    South Florida
  12. macrumors 6502a


    Nov 29, 2005
    Red Sox Nation
    Almost an iPhone. I'm sure, once the SDK is released, there will be some form of word processing. With the potential addition of a bluetooth keyboard, tadaaaaa, no more laptop needed! Well, the small screen over a long period of time might be annoying.
  13. macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2002
    metro New York area
    I'm out in the field all day so the MBA has lightened my load. I'll use it for setting up and checking networks. I also have a verizon 3G USB device for internet anywhere in the US (almost). After doing a clean install and regaining close to 7 GB I installed on Photoshop CS3, Lightroom, Bento and iWork. I have MS office suite 2008 on my other computers but am trying to avoid it on my MBA.

    I plan to use it for photo storage while traveling though I will carry USB/FW 2.5" and 1.8" HDs (I know the FW isn't going to do me any good with the MBA but it will on the other end). I don't plan to do major processing or editing just viewing and sorting. My MacBook Pro will now rest at home most of the time and I'll sell my old black macbook.
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 29, 2008
    I've been doing that for a while now, and the iphone isn't something i want to use for extended periods. Browsing is fatiguing after a while as you have to scroll so much and so your natural reading movements are broken up.
    Its brilliant when you don't have access to a computer, but i'm looking forward to my air so i don't have to use the iphone too often
  15. macrumors 6502

    Oct 1, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    Student. Laptop is on me whenever I'm on campus. Word, powerpoints, and surfing the web.

    I store my music on my iphone. I want to use up as little space as I can on the MBA.
  16. macrumors 68000


    Jan 17, 2008
    Seaford VA
    I bought my Air to carry to and from class. I use Office, and the web for porn and email and stuff like that. :)

    That extra weight I save by not carrying my Dell laptop helps out very much badly.
  17. macrumors newbie

    Feb 5, 2008
    Screenplays and Novels

    Planning to write quite a few screenplays on it. Can't imagine a better "pad" of paper. Truly the moleskine of laptops.


  18. macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2008
  19. MRU
    macrumors demi-god


    Aug 23, 2005
    ilife (iweb, iphoto, itunes)
    iwork (pages & keynote)
    internet (safari)
    web design away from the office (freeway 4 pro + dreamweaver CS3)
    graphic design touch ups or showing to client (photoshop / indesign / illustrator)
    Drawing & illustration away from my main computer (corel painter X)

    Entourage for my email, and the occasional use of word.

    That's my air usage.
  20. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2005
    Orlando, Florida
    I trust I will get flamed for this, but I'm not sure why everyone accepts tha fact that an MBA cannot be used as a primary system.

    Coming from one of the original MBP 2.0 systems, the performance difference is not noticable, and in some ways the difference between the processors (core duo vs core2 duo) favors the MBA. Memory is the same, as is drive space.

    I'm a technology consultant - primarily Microsoft technologies, and lots of network architecture. I run Omnigraffle when I can get away with it, but much of my work is in Visio via Fusion. I'm often forced to use Outlook for client email if I am stuck on their messaging system. I rely on Office 2007 in a VM for much of my documentation and documentation review. Natively in OS X I'm trying to determine if I can switch full over to NeoOffice, rather than dropping another copy of MSFT Office onboard. Not because I don't have the space, though - I currently have about 30GB of space free.

    I don't play many games on it, and nothing graphically demanding if I do, during my downtime.

    There are downsides to the MBA, such as lack of an integrated optical disk (I did grab the SuperDrive) as well as an ethernet port (Again, I bought the USB dongle) but really, what's the other disadvantage? It has one less USB port than the MBP? Sure, it's less convenient to have to use a USB broadband card, but that's not my model, so I don't care. And for an external mouse, I have a bluetooth one that works just fine.

    At my office, I have a 20" display and USB hub that I run everything into. I rely on wireless there so it works fine.

    Are there nits? Sure, I have less screen real estate on the road, but I expected to make that compromise for a lighter system. I had a Dell x300 so I understand about compromises in a subnotebook. In this case, the compromises - performance, display, keyboard - are significantly less than with other subnotebooks.

    It's not a solution for everyone, but people who disregard it as a serious business system are missing the boat. It's limitations are those faced by every subnotebook, and less so in each case. In general you pay a price for scale, and that's the case here. That doesn't mean it won't work as a primary system for many people.
  21. macrumors 68040


    May 16, 2006
    Central Florida!
  22. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2008
  23. macrumors 6502

    Aug 12, 2007
    - Internet surfing (it seems faster/zippier than all my other machines for some reason)

    - Gaming (see my "Gaming on Air" thread)

    - Email

    - TV on the go (slingplayer)

    I don't do a lot of word processing, but I installed iWork and am planning to do more with it eventually. I love the feel of the keyboard.
  24. macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2008
    I use it for everything that I need, e-mail, web, and basic network administration. Basically everything my IMac does but everywhere around my house. I take it with me from office to office and well, pretty much as close to a primary machine as you can get. I do not game so it works out fine.
  25. macrumors 6502

    Dec 29, 2007

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