Anyone consider that you may be buying a MacBook instead of Air with this update?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Scottsdale, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #1
    So with all of the rumors:
    4GB RAM standard for all Macs sold with Lion
    Mac mini update coming soon
    Mac Pro update coming soon
    Lion coming soon
    MacBook Air update coming soon
    and Apple called the October 2010 MBA the "next generation of MacBooks"
    Seems like no white MacBook update near

    Does anyone else think that they might be buying a MacBook come later this week instead of a MacBook Air? I really believe that the apparent lack of a MacBook update, and the fact that the MB is the last of the non-eco friendly Macs with its polycarbonate shell, means the plastic MacBook may be going bye bye.

    With the cost of the MBA dropping with nearly every release, and Apple focusing on marketing the MBAs, it seems both MBAs could just become MacBooks this week and drop the Air moniker.

    I know a lot of people have great reasons for wanting white MacBooks over other Mac notebooks, but Apple consistently does what's best for it. I think many people would be happy with such a transition as long as the prices reflect an entry-level model availability. A $999 low-end 13" MacBook that is aluminum and has 4GB RAM and 128GB SSD and maybe even a lower resolution LCD again instead of the 1440x900 the MBA had.

    I will not be surprised either way, but I think there's a possibility that everyone here that thinks they will be buying MBAs will actually be buying Macs labeled with just "MacBook" instead.
     
  2. Eggtastic, Jul 18, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011

    Eggtastic macrumors 6502a

    Eggtastic

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    #2
    i can't see apple updating macbook's, but i also can't see them changing the name of the new air's (if thats what you are arguing).

    i have also seen people argue the existence of the macbooks, but look around college campus's, coffee shops, or in public in general and what do you see? mbp's and tablets. the air will definitely be more mainstream.

    also, check out the marketing apple does, i see more imacs, mbp's, and airs before i come across seeing a macbook. the general public is drawn to the sleekness of apple products and the macbook doesn't appear as sleek as its big brothers.
     
  3. Scottsdale thread starter macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #3
    Yes, my point is I think Apple could just change the name of the MBA to MacBook. It wouldn't make sense as a consumer, but my argument is Apple does what it can make the most money with and provide the best user experience. If Apple can provide 13" MBAs as entry level MacBooks for $999, I think a lot of people would be upset, but many would be happy. In addition, it can lower costs by creating one less model and focusing production of the new model.
     
  4. Eggtastic macrumors 6502a

    Eggtastic

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    #4
    right there haha. i feel that apple has been looking into that for a long time and as you mentioned with the lack or hearing rumors for an updated macbook, we wont see it again. as for the name change, i thought about it, and now see your point more clearly. if the new MBP's (whenever they are updated) sport a similar air design, then the pro's will keep their name, and the air would just be a macbook.
     
  5. Jobsian macrumors 6502a

    Jobsian

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    #5
    Interesting idea Scotts RE the Air becoming the MacBook. Especially with Jobs himself saying that the Air is the way forward for notebooks.

    The only disadvantage that I can think of is that next to the MacBook Pro (unless Apple change its name too), the Air might be seen to assume a less 'premium' status.
     
  6. Alvesang macrumors regular

    Alvesang

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    #6
    If the white MB really gets cut I might consider getting one, even though it'd be my third MacBook (next to MBP and MBA). I really like the look of the white machine. ;)
     
  7. Obi Wan Kenobi macrumors 6502

    Obi Wan Kenobi

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    #7
    I think the "Air" part of "MBA" is all part of the marketing strategy for the product. It emphasises its USP of being lightweight and thus ultra-portable. Anyone talking about the product has to mention the USP, because its part of the name.
     
  8. jackyyeow macrumors 6502

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    #8
    If MBA no longer carrying the name "air", I'd assumed we'd give nickname to the MBP the BrickBook?:D

    Macbook is macbook, and will remain macbook. Just like iMac, PowerMac, MacPro, iBook, Powerbook G3/G4, Powerbook Ti, Powerbook Alu, Macbook Unibody, Macbook Black, etc. Those name represent particular product at particular timeframe/history.
     
  9. rhinosrcool, Jul 19, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2011

    rhinosrcool macrumors 65816

    rhinosrcool

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    #9
    My thoughts, too. The Air name is unique and Apple knows this.

    Also, I'm not so sure that the MACBOOK is done. In fact, some people thought that the Air was done, and voila, look what we have! Its update took a long time.
     
  10. Scottsdale thread starter macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #10
    Okay, after posting this last night, now there is a front page rumor that indeed the white MacBooks will be EOL'd.

    I know there is a "premium" perceived value in the "Air" branding, BUT SJ himself said the MBAs are the future of the MacBooks. In addition, that "premium" has now been reduced to no premium at all... the base configuration MBA is the same price as the white MacBook. Want a Mac notebook, two of them are entries at $999.

    Another point of my post is that Apple has reduced the price with every MBA update to date. Every single one of them, check it. What if Apple introduces a 13" MBA that is the base configuration with 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, and lower resolution LCD at $999. That is how they could get both 11" and 13" MBAs down to $999.

    Then, provide premiums in both models to get them up to higher price points. For example, there can be 8GB RAM upgrade, 256 and 512GB Flash SSD upgrades, 1440x900 LCD upgrade, backlit keyboard upgrade, and etc. That way they can sell them at price points from $999 all the way above $2000 for those that NEED 512GB SSDs, 8GB RAM, backlit keyboards, and etc.

    I just think it's a possibility. In addition, I see there being a need for a "MacBook!" Since the price premium is gone, and the MBAs are the next generation of MacBooks why not just label them MacBooks. The "Air" moniker is far less important now that there's no real premium in the pricing model. The "Pro" models are more important and real upgrades.

    In addition, I see the MBPs all being merged with MBAs in the next few years. Call them all MacBooks. Look what Apple has done to the 13" MBP... lack of a real GPU, no real Pro about it. The MBPs are all rumored to be a lot more like MBAs with their next updates. Apple seems focused on providing iOS devices and wants to streamline their Mac offerings. The fewer Mac models they can provide, the more money they can make. It is a lot less expensive to offer one model with a bunch of options for configurations than three models like Apple currently has. Then, offer four sized MacBooks... all without optical drives, as people can use external if they need them. All with flash drives to run the OS, as iCloud and remote wireless storage are quickly becoming the norm. Offer lots of models all with the same chassis basically.

    I don't know whether they will eliminate the white MacBook or call the next MBA the MacBook, but I am open to the possibility based on everything I have read. And now, there is a front page article on MR about the white MacBook being EOL'd and the MBA picking up the slack as the entry model Mac notebook.
     
  11. wdaleherring macrumors member

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    #11
    I don't think so. There's no way I'd spend over 1k on that. I would feel ripped off as if I was opening an already outdated piece of technology.

    Further, I used to love the look of the white MacBook, but with all of their new lines of machines that look much more professional, I just think the MB looks like a cheap piece of plastic. Just my $.02.
     
  12. Duke15 macrumors 6502

    Duke15

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    #12
    Yeah on appleinsider it also points out that the macbook is probably at its end
     
  13. joejoejoe, Jul 19, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2011

    joejoejoe macrumors 65816

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    #13
    Apple seems to have been struggling to place the Macbook for a while now. Remember after the years of the blackbook, Apple updated the Macbook to what is now known as the 13 inch MBP? It was aluminum, and looked identical to the MBP but carried the Macbook name. Then all of a sudden they beefed it up with a somewhat better processor, tagged on a Pro to the end of it's name and the white plastic Macbook arose from the dead.

    Seems like they already tried getting rid of the Macbook once, if you catch what I'm saying.

    Now it seems a lot more feasible that the Air can replace the Macbook. Right now there's a big discrepancy between the processors: 2.4 GHz Core2Duo in the Macbook, 1.4 in the entry level Air of the same price. That's a whole GHz on the same processor architecture. But now that the Airs will have Sandy Bridge (tomorrow as they say), it will be much faster than the white Macbook, and giving the white Macbook a Sandy Bridge processor would make it pretty much a 13 inch MBP in a plastic body.

    Apple MIGHT show off the new MacBook Airs tomorrow and call them MacBooks, but if the way they've treated the iPod classic is indicative of anything, they'll still call them Airs, they'll keep the old plastic Macbook around just to appease people who don't want something so delicate, and would rather have 250 gigs off the bat than 128.

    I think the Macbook will stay. One day, maybe a generation from now, they'll discontinue the Plasticbook. But for now, people are too reliant on CDs, not everyone even knows what cloud computing is... there's still a strong market for an entry level, sturdy, plastic Mac laptop with a good amount of memory and speed. The Air is not this, and is still somewhat of a niche, exotic product.

    I don't think the plastic Macbook will be disappearing tomorrow, but it's time is definitely coming to an end.
     
  14. onthecouchagain macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    #14
    There were some rumors that the Airs could see price reduction. If it turns out to be true, along with the upgraded standards (4 GB RAM, 128/256 SSD base for 11" and 13" respectively) that would be incredible. They would sell like hotcakes.
     
  15. pgiguere1 macrumors 68020

    pgiguere1

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    #15
    I don't think so. The white MacBook is basically inferior to the 13" MBP in every aspect and serves the same purpose. You just pay more for more performance if you chose the Pro. Same screen size and resolution, similar form factor and weight, same non-discrete graphics.

    The MBA is in another league. Of course it starts as 999$ as well, but much more people will be tempted to upgrade it or chose the 13" version while people who chose the white MacBook always get the base model. If they had more money to spend they would have chosen the 13" MBP. A 13" Air (even base model) would have a similar CPU (lower clocked ULV), same graphics, same RAM, Thunderbolt, higher-resolution display, and much faster storage (SSD).

    How exactly could a computer that is much easier to carry around, faster in most situations, higher-res and more expensive be considered the "Non-Pro" version of the 13" MBP? It would have to be slightly inferior in every aspect while being cheaper to be called MacBook. Now it's inferior in some and superior in others while not necessarily being cheaper. It's still a different computer.

    I don't think Apple would mind not having a computer called "MacBook". Notice how no iPod is called simply "iPod" now. Even the classic has a suffix, and they're probably gonna stop making it soon while still calling the iPod touch "iPod touch".

    I could only see the MBA be renamed MacBook when they release new thinner redesigned MBP's with SSD and high-resolution screens on all configurations. Not before.
     
  16. JusChexin, Jul 19, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2011

    JusChexin macrumors member

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    #16
    I wouldn't be too sure...

    Aren't the MacBook's the best selling computer for Apple, though? The mistake analysts make and that savvy consumers on a website like this make is that we are all far too logical and judge the possibility of the retiring of the MacBook in terms of product line conversion, perceived benefit/need, etc. In fact, I'm sure most consumers new to the Apple/MacBook world start off with white plastic MacBooks as the cheapest entry into the portable line (I know I did, back in 2007). While it's true the MBA is just as capable (and moreso if they don't refresh the MacBook when they refresh the MBA) at a price point exactly the same or slightly higher than the MacBook in a much sexier/slimmer shell -- I don't think it ultimately matters. I still think the majority of college students, new Apple customers etc won't do the cost/benefit analysis, won't understand a portable computer for $999 without a CDRom/DVD Drive, don't understand Apple refresh cycles, etc and will simply think "I'm getting a MacBook, woot!"

    I understand that by killing off the MacBook line completely you wouldn't have the problem of consumers having to decide between the MB and MBA, but even in 2011 I think entry level consumers want that whitebook and a superdrive. (Seriously -- I saw a "People's Court" on TV not too long ago where a guy bought a MBA from his neighbor and then tried to sue her to take it back and return his money because it didn't have a superdrive and he couldn't figure out how to use it. Judge Milian was like "Ummm, how did you think they got it so thin? You should have researched before buying" or something like that). I think if you just refreshed the Whitebook, made it a little slimmer, and maybe made it so the apple logo had a customizable color LED instead of just being white (tacky, but the kids will love it), that would be all Apple would need to do to keep the MacBook their best selling computer. Heck, they might not even need to do all of that to keep the MacBook at #1. Point: we're all too educated on the Apple product line, don't overestimate the savvy of new consumers! :D
     
  17. PraisiX-windows macrumors regular

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    #17
    About the discussion of the MBA becoming the macbook, sure, I think there's a good chance that would happen eventually (or with this refresh), but I don't think they'd change its name, as the "air" makes it sound more, I don't know, special?
    I don't see a need for them to have an "all-round" computer as well as a "power edition" lineup, why not just "Power edition" and "ultra portable"? I mean, the way it is now it makes sense to have the "all-round" macbook in the lineup, but when they're practically priced the same, why not have people choose, the ultrathin, that can do anything you need it to, or the beefier one that is just that, beefier?

    I don't know if I'm spewing hogwash, but I'd say the name air, is very indicative of the computer and should stay, it would lose its spoken touch without it.
    "Macbook" (without any "endfix") just sounds too plain and dull, just like it actually is at this time imo.

    Tbh, about the macbook being the best selling item, I don't really know, I mean, what does it even mean? That it is the one averaging most sales per day? Or that it has sold most over its entire life, or since the latest refresh?
    I'd bet my left leg and sock that the macbook hasn't been the mac getting most sales each day for quite some time now.
     
  18. wdaleherring macrumors member

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    #18
    Absolutely not. I just read an article today that states the MBs didn't even account for 10% of sales last quarter.
     
  19. fyrefly macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    Not really - estimates Peg the plain white MacBook as just 10% of Apple's sales.

    But if Apple can just push people who need the superdrive to the 13" MBP, then why does the White MB need to be there? If you want cheap $999, you get a MBA. If you want a Superdrive, you get a 13" MBP. Apple's *always* loved upselling people - I bet 1/2 the people who come into the Apple Store wanting a White MB end up with a 13" MBP anyway.

    And regarding the name change, I seriously doubt they'd change the name. If they kill off the White MB, then so be it, but I agree with those that say the Air name has cache to it. If nothing else, Apple'd come up with a totally different name, but I can't see that happening, as the "MacBook ______" moniker has really stuck in the zeitgeist.

    Has Apple ever changed a product's name/specs so drastically like that before? I can remember the Unibody MB Aluminum being upgraded to a Pro, but those were different sizes of the same machines. It's so different to me to have a MBA (which is a totally different machine) replacing the "MacBook" (aka "MacBook White") name with a completely different product... it'd be too confusing for consumers, IMHO.
     
  20. rhinosrcool macrumors 65816

    rhinosrcool

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    #20
    Well, Scottsdale was right. It's funny, it all seems so obvious, now.
     
  21. wdaleherring macrumors member

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    #21
    I'm definitely going to be getting the MB instead now. I was really hoping for 4GB standard and an HD facetime camera. Oh well. White Macbook here I come! :D
     

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