How much life left in Macbook Air Mid-2011

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by automan98, May 5, 2017.

  1. automan98 macrumors regular

    Apr 25, 2005
    I purchased by first Mac laptop 6 years ago. It was a Macbook Air Mid 2011. I'm happy to say I'm just as happy with it as when I first purchased it. I had to replace the battery, but other than that it's been running great.

    Any thoughts how much longer this laptop could live for? I'm used to having Windows computers that typically die in 3 to 4 years (max!)?

  2. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

    Apr 13, 2017
    As long as it works,and Apple support it with software,just keep it going.
  3. dborja macrumors 6502a

    Sep 13, 2007
    Northern California
    I also have a 2011 MBA and it's still going strong. I'm running Sierra and the only thing to consider is that any new OS versions after this year are not going to support it, technically.

    And, yes, Windows machine lifetimes are typically three years...
  4. Rory76 macrumors member

    Apr 24, 2017
    Why won't new OS versions after this year support it? I'm curious because I have a 2015 MBA, and although the model was last updated in 2015, it's still being sold by Apple right now. Do you know when mine will no longer support new OS versions? Thx!
  5. Boyd01 Moderator


    Staff Member

    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    I had a 2011 MBA and it was a great computer but I upgraded in 2013 and there was a huge difference. The 2011 only has USB 2.0 which really matters if you use external drives. For example, I have a 1TB Samsung USB SSD. Connected to a USB 3.0 port it will transfer data at over 400MB/sec. Connect that same drive to your 2011 MBA and you will only get about 30MB/sec.

    Then there is the old wifi on the 2011 MBA. Starting in 2013, the 802.11ac wifi on the MBA is at least 5 times faster. This makes a big difference if you access shared drives on a local network.

    Arguably the biggest shortcoming is battery life, starting in 2013 Apple switched to more power-efficient processors that deliver close to twice the battery run time on the MBA.

    Now many people might not use their computers in a way that they would notice these things. I definitely did however, and am glad I sold the 2011 machine back in 2013. If, as you say, you're still happy with the 2011 then just keep on going with it. Also there is no law that says you need to install every new version of MacOSX. I am still running 10.8.5 on a couple of my machines. :)
  6. dborja, May 6, 2017
    Last edited: May 6, 2017

    dborja macrumors 6502a

    Sep 13, 2007
    Northern California
    Your 2015 should be good for a couple more years.

    and this

    I may be mis-speaking but computers more than 7 years old are declared obsolete so new OS versions are not required to support them.
  7. cincygolfgrrl macrumors 6502


    Apr 2, 2012
    Somewhere In Time
    My 2011 MBA still runs like a champ with Sierra. My battery is at 85% of original capacity. I don't believe I'm the exception. At some point in the future I'll need to replace it, but that should be at least a few years away.
  8. ApolloBoy macrumors 6502a


    Apr 16, 2015
    San Jose, CA
    I'd say you're fine, I was using my old 2007 white MacBook for over six years when it got too slow even for YouTube.

    Funnily enough my mom's 2011 Toshiba is still going strong, albeit after a new keyboard and an SSD upgrade.
  9. whohasaquestion macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2011
    Mine is running El Cap and it's just fine. Not seeing a need to update to Sierra.

    Not sure if this is just me. The keyboard and the trackpad have its minor problems. The forward arrow key only works intermittently and the trackpad requires several attempts to register a tap-click.
  10. drsox macrumors 65816


    Apr 29, 2011
    My 13in 2011 MBA is still going strong. I had to get a new battery last year but nothing else has broken. Now relegated to a second use laptop, it's in daily use. One upgrade I would recommend is to swap out the SSD for a Transcend version. The upgrade is a 240GB TS240GJDM500 (says System Information). Much faster and you can still use the original SSD in an external housing (provided free).

    PS Also running 10.11.6
  11. Pugly macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2016
    Think of the low end 2015 MacBook. Apple should support that for a long time, and the 2011 Air is close to that in performance.

    Computers are slowly turning into all other consumer electronics... get a new one because it breaks. The performance upgrades are marginal, and there are no hard cutoffs anymore to make something unsupported... except maybe ram...
  12. Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Feb 5, 2007
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    Well said, I further believe, we all, buy way more computer than we need, I'd be perfectly happy with a Ver.2 IPP, if it had a Mac OS! Computers are like PU TRUCKS, it's a LIBIDO thing
  13. Aston441 macrumors 65816

    Sep 16, 2014
    Someone above said future OS updates are not coming to mid 2011 MBA? Where is that from? I've never seen that.
  14. Boyd01 Moderator


    Staff Member

    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    Here is Apple's policy on obsolete and vintage hardware, but that is really about what they will repair and not about the operating systems the computer can run. At this point, the 2011 MBA is a "vintage" computer.

    "Vintage products are those that have not been manufactured for more than 5 and less than 7 years ago.

    Obsolete products are those that were discontinued more than 7 years ago."

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