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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Apple plans to release a new entry-level 13-inch MacBook in the second half of 2018, according to industry sources cited by DigiTimes. The report claims General Interface Solution (GIS) is expected to win more LCD display orders from Apple for the planned new model, after it began supplying the modules for existing MacBooks in the fourth quarter of last year.


Touch panel maker General Interface Solution (GIS) is expected to land more LCM (LCD module) orders from Apple, which reportedly plans to release an entry-level 13-inch MacBook in the second half of 2018, according to industry sources.

With new orders for MacBooks and other models, GIS is expected to ramp up its LCM shipments to 600,000 units a month by the end of 2018 compared to 300,000 units currently, said the sources.
Extrapolating from today's report, which is light on detail, Apple's next entry-level MacBook will likely replace the 13-inch MacBook Air, Apple's lowest-cost notebook starting at $999. Apple's long-term aim was for the 12-inch MacBook to replace the MacBook Air, which was introduced in 2008, but sales of the Air have remained strong mainly thanks to its affordability. In 2016, Apple tried to position the 13-inch MacBook Pro with no Touch Bar as a viable MacBook Air alternative, but the Pro starts at $1,299, which is $300 more than the entry-level Air model.

With its signature tapered design, the MacBook Air is the only notebook the company still sells that does not have a Retina display. To keep it viable for a while longer, Apple bumped the base model's processor from 1.6 GHz to 1.8 in June 2017, but it has only seen similar minor updates since its last major revision in March 2015. The 11-inch MacBook Air has been discontinued entirely, and we do not expect to see further substantial updates to the line.

It's unclear what form a new entry-level 13-inch MacBook would take, although Apple would likely make efforts to clearly distinguish it from any existing 13-inch MacBook Pro models. Apple is known to be exploring the possibility of using fullscreen OLED displays in future MacBook series, which could see the company retain LCD display technology in a new entry-level machine while eventually adopting OLED for its Pro line-up, similar to the OLED/LCD differentiation strategy it will take for this year's upcoming iPhone line-up.

Apple is also reportedly looking into using ARM-based core processor chips for future MacBooks, which would reduce the company's dependence on Intel, especially given the recent Spectre and Meltdown troubles. Apple's interest in building its own core processors for notebooks could also enable it to control next-generation display technology and some related key components, according to sources, which would further differentiate the company's computers from others on the market.

Article Link: Apple Said to Release New Entry-Level 13-inch MacBook This Year, Likely Replacing MacBook Air


macrumors 68020
Jun 13, 2016
Kind of expected, and a very good move.
And it’s needed, even more so than it has been in the past 18 months, with the 13” MacBook Pros being quad-core, there is more space for this MacBook in the lineup.

While the Air certainly isn’t just selling well because of the price, this will probably take off despite the slightly higher pricing.


macrumors 6502
Apr 20, 2010
I actually hope so!
The 13" MacBook Air was the best laptop I ever had.

Sold it and bought a used 15" MacBook Pro.
While the Pro is so much faster, it doesn't provide the same extremely nice feel when working with it as the Air.

And because MacOS is very performant even on slower machines, I can definitely imagine buying one of the new "cheap" MacBooks, should they become reality.


macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
The best thing they could do - just update the air with a higher resolution (1920x1200?) IPS screen, modern chipset, and maybe a TB3/USB C instead of the TB2/ Mini display. If they really want to go to town then a force touch trackpad too. (a 15" option would also be nice though not holding my breath for that one)


macrumors regular
Feb 12, 2008
New York, NY
Makes sense to me. Current 12” MacBook drops to $999, new 13” Macbook (with two TB3 ports) replaces 13” Pro without TouchBar at $1299. So for the same money as the old entry level MacBook Pro you get one with a thinner chassis and slower specs, which wouldn’t surprise me because it’s Apple, and they believe the vast majority of their casual users can live with the 12” MacBook’s power anyways. It will also keep the appeal of the $1799 MacBook Pro (maybe a price drop to $1499?) which now only sports a TouchBar and 4 TB3 ports, making it seem like Apple now takes the TouchBar seriously.


macrumors member
Apr 21, 2017
Nice, I really want to get a simple apple laptop just to be able to code and browse the web when I go out. No need for anything fancy. Perfect timing for me.
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macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
As an alternative, perhaps they could just 'SE' the 2015 13" pro at a lower cost - new chipset and USB C instead of Mini Display. No new design means cheaper production and design costs, no teething issues, ideal solution?


macrumors 68020
Jun 2, 2016
Cornwall UK
For my use I'd be interested to see what becomes of this rumour.

my 2012 air copes with what I do so this new air should be just as or more capable.


macrumors Core
Oct 14, 2008
Very much expected and would finally bring some order back to Mac laptop line. Two MacBooks (12/13) with dual core cannon lake and two MacBook pros with quad/hex’s core CPUs, that’s what I expect to see by the end of the year.
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macrumors member
Feb 13, 2009
They better put some decent storage into their base models. 128GB is a joke for a desktop OS machine in 2018. They keep repeating this 5400rpm/Combodrive/RAM ******** over and over.

I don't care about touch bar and super-thinness. And I'd like to have a keyboard with keys that are actually moving when I press them ...


Jun 25, 2009
Enough ports, RAM, retina, horsepower, battery life, keytravel please
(to become a regular supplier again)


macrumors 6502
Feb 3, 2008
I don't like the sound of this rumor. Why not drop the price of the 12" MacBook (possibly by making a 128GB model) and then releasing a 14" MacBook model. The 14" model should get two TB3 ports. Keep the MacBook Pro at 13" (eliminate non Touch Bar model) and 15". Bump the capacities in the Pro to differentiate further.

I'd also be interested in a 12" or 14" "iCloud" model. Sub $900 with little onboard storage and you get increased iCloud storage for free for that device.


macrumors 6502
Jan 23, 2018

Apple is also reportedly looking into using ARM-based core processor chips for future MacBooks, which would reduce the company's dependence on Intel, especially given the recent Spectre and Meltdown troubles.
Apple A-SoC:
Even Apple has a Problem with Spectre and Meltdown.

"The Meltdown technique can enable a user process to read kernel memory. Our analysis suggests that it has the most potential to be exploited. Apple released mitigations for Meltdown in iOS 11.2, macOS 10.13.2, and tvOS 11.2. watchOS did not require mitigation."

It is unlikely that the problem will be solved quickly in Hardware.

Currently AMD would be the best solution in this regard.
Meltdown doesn't affect AMD Ryzen; Spectre 1 and Spectre 2 affect AMD. As far as I know it is harder to exploit Spectre 2 on AMD-System compared to Intel (and maybe Apple A-SoC?).

From this point of view it would be nice to see AMD chips in Macs.
Ryzen(2), Threadripper, Raven Ridge APU ...


macrumors regular
Dec 12, 2016
I'd love a 12" and a 14.2" MacBook with thin bezels (which would fit in the case of a 13" rMBP). 13" is slightly too small for me and the bezels aren't on par anymore with what competitors nowadays offer or what iPhone X offers. Having just some more screen space in a small notebook would be perfect.

But when we see such a step forward, that probably will only be in the expensive models, so we'll have to wait until around 2020 for the next MacBook Pro redesign..
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macrumors 603
Apr 2, 2008
New York.
The article says “Apple's long-term aim was for the 12-inch MacBook to replace the MacBook Air, which was first introduced in 2010, but sales of the Air have remained strong mainlythanks to its affordability.”

The MacBook Air was introduced in 2008 no?


macrumors G3
Sep 12, 2017
Sunnyvale, CA
Come on, this is Apple we’re talking about.
When was the last time they just made something cheaper?
Last month the iPhone battery replacement from $79 to $29 , Sept 2017 iPhone SE $399 to $349, Mac Pro dropped about $1,000 iirc in April 2017, 128GB iPad mini 4 from $499 to $399 in March 2017.

Longish post at:
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