'AirBar' Accessory That Gives 13-Inch MacBook Air a Touchscreen is Now Available

Discussion in 'Mac Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jul 18, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Neonode today announced that AirBar for the 13-inch MacBook Air is now available to purchase for $99 at select retailers in the United States, including Fry's Electronics and Evine.com. It'll also be available online through Amazon, Best Buy, and Staples, but it doesn't appear to be in stock on those websites yet.


    AirBar, a CES 2017 Innovation Awards Honoree, is a thin aluminum bar that magnetically attaches below the 13-inch MacBook Air's display, connects to a USB port, and transforms the notebook into a touchscreen device.

    AirBar projects an invisible light field on the surface of the MacBook Air's display. When a finger, stylus, brush, or other object breaks the light, users are able to interact with the screen without actually touching it, including gestures such as tap-to-select, swiping, scrolling, and pinch-to-zoom.

    Neonode said AirBar requires 17mm of free space below the display, so it won't fit any MacBook Pro, 12-inch MacBook, or 11-inch MacBook Air.

    AirBar is a plug-and-play sensor that "instantly activates" upon being plugged into any USB port on the right side of the 13-inch MacBook Air. Neonode also offers multi-touch software as a one-time installation to enable additional gestures.

    AirBar is also available for select Windows laptops with displays sized 13.3 inches, 14 inches, and 15.6 inches.

    Article Link: 'AirBar' Accessory That Gives 13-Inch MacBook Air a Touchscreen is Now Available
  2. CerebralX macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2013
    Looking for a place of freedom and rationality
    This is absolutely useless. When will people learn that touch screen laptops don't work unless you are able to detach the screen in which case it's just a tablet...
  3. pat500000 Suspended


    Jun 3, 2015
    All that touching makes that mac feel very unsafe.....
  4. KaliPaige macrumors member


    Feb 9, 2016
    The Mac needs an adult!

    In all seriousness though, awesome piece of tech. I'd love to see this thing make its way to the rest of the MacBook lineup. More input options are never a bad thing!
  5. JosephAW macrumors 68020


    May 14, 2012
    I'm surprised no one has figured out how to do this with the built in camera. Maybe with an little mirror attachment.
  6. Starflyer macrumors 6502a


    Jan 22, 2003
    I don't even like using my iPad sitting upright on a desk. This would be torture.
  7. jblagden macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2013
    There was a device like this called the Leap a few years ago, but it didn't really take off. The implementation of this one is much better, as it does not allow the sensor to move. The leap probably needed to be recalibrated every time it was moved.
  8. Jakewilk macrumors regular

    Jul 21, 2014
    But can you still close the screen with it? And if not then where do you put it when you put your MacBook Air back in your bag? Sounds liable to break.
  9. jblagden macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2013
    It would be nice if Apple just built the touchscreen into the laptop, but I expect that the reason Apple hasn't done that is because they're worried that doing so might cannibalize the iPad.
  10. Mobster1983 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 8, 2011
    Great concept, if extremely limited in execution. Not for me, as I have no want for fingerprints on my screen (Yes, I know you don't NEED to touch the screen) and think a touch screen on a laptop is just not worth the effort.
  11. jonnyb098, Jul 18, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017

    jonnyb098 macrumors 68030


    Nov 16, 2010
    So will all the people complaining they want a touch screen mac finally shut up and buy this? Probably not because as much as everyone "SAYS" they want a touch screen mac, they would soon find out it sucks.
  12. Squirreladd macrumors member


    Feb 29, 2016
    Speak for your own use case. I for one find a touch screen useful in many situations. Is it a selling point for me no but it is an added benefit I enjoy and use daily
  13. Erdbeertorte Suspended

    May 20, 2015
    Yes seems really great. I sometimes accidentally touch my MacBook's screen and am dissappointed nothing happens.

    No-one is forcing the complainers to purchase anything like that. It's better than nothing for the ones who could have a some use of it.
  14. DanielDD macrumors 6502

    Apr 5, 2013
    They are if they do not offer any advantage to existing input options and come with a series of drawbacks (more expensive, drain battery life, added bulk to the device)
  15. CerebralX macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2013
    Looking for a place of freedom and rationality
    What added benefit would this give though?
  16. Pezboy macrumors member


    Nov 23, 2015
    This is an outstanding piece of technology that I am so impressed by (if it works as advertised) that being said, I don’t see any point in it. macOS is not designed to utilize touch (I don’t think it should, but that’s a different discussion), so this will never feel like it should. If you feel that you need a touch screen so badly just get a windows computer, don’t hinder your exceptional user experience by getting this... but once again, super amazing tech.
  17. bjet767 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 2, 2010
    It would also validate what Microsoft has done with the Surface and Windows; something that would cause Steve Jobs to rise from the gates of..., ok roll over in his grave. :mad:
  18. dazzer21-2 macrumors regular

    Dec 3, 2005
    Am I just being silly or is the hand in the demo not throwing shadows onto the actual screen, especially on the drawing bit at the end? Somehow all looks a little bit fake to me...
  19. TechViking macrumors regular

    Mar 3, 2009
    Best usage scenario for a touchscreen laptop is when laying down on a sofa or in bed with the laptop on your chest. Surfing the web on a laptop is then a much better experience than using the touchpad and keyboard only.
  20. Sunny1990 Suspended


    Feb 13, 2015
    The real problem is that Mac OS isn't made for Touch Screens
  21. TechViking macrumors regular

    Mar 3, 2009
    I believe it comes with a pouch to put the Airbar in and keep it safe when not attached to the Macbook Air.
  22. djeeyore25 macrumors 6502


    Dec 23, 2014
    New York City
    I'm always looking for things to fill up the overabundance of USB ports on my MacBook Air.
  23. rp2011 macrumors 65816


    Oct 12, 2010
    For You. Useless for you.
  24. jblagden macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2013
    Linux can also handle touchscreens.
  25. KaliPaige macrumors member


    Feb 9, 2016
    Then don't buy one. Simple as that.

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