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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

AppleInsider reports that Apple is preparing to release an updated version of its compact AirPort Express wireless base station. Hints of the imminent refresh come from shortages of the existing model being observed at several third-party retailers, but the most concrete evidence comes from a source reporting that Apple is finishing work on its AirPort Utility 5.6 software which makes reference to the new model.
Although Apple's online store still reflects availability of "AirPort Express Base Station with 802.11n and AirTunes," authorized resellers like DataVision report that the same model (MB321LL/A) is discontinued, while Amazon estimates it will have new stock sometime in the next "2 to 5 weeks."

Additionally, a person familiar with the matter says Apple is wrapping up the release of AirPort Utility 5.6, makes reference to a second-generation 802.11n AirPort Express in its developer notes:

"Adds support for the AirPort Express 802.11n (2nd Generation) base station"
Similar references to updated Time Capsule and AirPort Extreme models were discovered in the public release of AirPort Utility 5.5.3 back in June, with the new models debuting a week later.

That update brought increased storage capacities for Time Capsule models, as well as improved range and performance. It is unclear exactly what changes Apple has in store for the AirPort Express, but similar wireless performance improvements may be the focus of the update.

Article Link: Apple Preparing to Release Updated AirPort Express Base Station


macrumors regular
Oct 15, 2005
I hope this isn't their way of "fixing" the wifi problem associated with Lion.

"Your old Airport works fine except when your Lion-run machine wakes from sleep? Obviously, you need to buy a new Airport."


Jul 8, 2010
Keep the price and give it an HDMI out, to wirelessly stream not only Music, but your entire desktop. That would rock, at least imo. Likely not to happen, though...


macrumors 6502
Jan 8, 2008
I wonder if it will have airplay as well as airtunes? Wifi N but what else would they add?


macrumors 6502a
Jul 11, 2007
I assume the software update will bring back to my mac icloud support instead of mobile me.


macrumors 68040
Apr 3, 2009
How come MacRumors talks about this but not that the MacBook was discontinued in favor of cheap MBPs...or did I miss an article?


macrumors 6502
Jun 15, 2011
How come MacRumors talks about this but not that the MacBook was discontinued in favor of cheap MBPs...or did I miss an article?

MacBook Airs, you mean. And they did. Back when it happened.
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macrumors 68020
Sep 25, 2009
Orlando, FL

This little fella is one of my favorite pieces of Apple stuff. Although the five that I have throughout my house are tucked away behind furniture or speaker systems, I would like to see a new form factor. As much as I love the AirPort Express, I think it looks rather dated.

Also, if they'd lower the price and offer an AirPlay-only version (drop the router functionality), I'd be even happier, since I only use them for streaming audio.
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macrumors 6502
Dec 7, 2007
I hope they will fix these things:

- If you have a printer connected to AE, it needs to be on 24-7 unless you want to reboot AE every time you want to use the printer. Same thing happens when the printer slips into power save mode. Nice environmentally friendly thinking.

- The frequent lost connections that require manual rebooting because the mac can not find the AE.

- Not directly the fault of AE but iTunes crashes every time it tries to connect to an Airplay device that's already in use by another app, for example Airfoil by Rogue Amoeba.

It would be about time.
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