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Redesigned MacBook Air Reportedly Planned for 3Q 2013 Launch, Possibly with Retina Display

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Taiwanese newspaper Economic Times reports [Google translation, via Mac Otakara] that Apple is lining up suppliers for its next-generation MacBook Air for launch in the third quarter of this year.

According to the report, the MacBook Air will not only be receiving internal upgrades to Intel's new Haswell platform but also a "facelift" with new external features, including the possibility of a Retina display. The report also claims that suppliers will begin shipping components to Apple's assembly partner Quanta during the second quarter of the year.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo had previously included an updated MacBook Air in his 2013 Apple product roadmap, predicting a late second quarter or early third quarter launch for the device. He did, however, indicate that the update would not include Retina displays, which would require substantially more battery power than the current displays and likely force a redesign to also accommodate a somewhat thicker display assembly.

Pricing remains another question for Apple, as the MacBook Air is the company's entry-level notebook and Apple will likely be very hesitant to raise that floor. But while Apple's Retina MacBook Pro models carry significantly higher pricing than their non-Retina counterparts, a significant amount of that cost is related to a shift to solid-state drives, which are already used in the MacBook Air.

Consequently, a shift to a Retina display for the MacBook Air may add a much smaller price premium to the lineup. Apple could also choose to separate the MacBook Air into Retina and non-Retina lines as it has for the MacBook Pro, or offer Retina displays as higher-end options on a unified lineup.

Article Link: Redesigned MacBook Air Reportedly Planned for 3Q 2013 Launch, Possibly with Retina Display
 

Ddyracer

macrumors 68000
Nov 24, 2009
1,786
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[url=http://cdn.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogodarkd.png]Image[/url]


Taiwanese newspaper Economic Times reports [Google translation, via Macotakara] that Apple is lining up suppliers for its next-generation MacBook Air for launch in the third quarter of this year.

According to the report, the MacBook Air will not only be receiving internal upgrades to Intel's new Haswell platform but also a "facelift" with new external features, including the possibility of a Retina display. The report also claims that suppliers will begin shipping components to Apple's assembly partner Quanta during the second quarter of the year.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo had previously included an updated MacBook Air in his 2013 Apple product roadmap, predicting a late second quarter or early third quarter launch for the device. He did, however, indicate that the update would not include Retina displays, which would require substantially more battery power than the current displays and likely force a redesign to also accommodate a somewhat thicker display assembly.

Pricing remains another question for Apple, as the MacBook Air is the company's entry-level notebook and Applw will likely be very hesitant to raise that floor. But while Apple's Retina MacBook Pro models carry significantly higher pricing than their non-Retina counterparts, a significant amount of that cost is related to a shift to solid-state drives, which are already used in the MacBook Air.

Consequently, a shift to a Retina display for the MacBook Air may add a much smaller price premium to the lineup. Apple could also choose to separate the MacBook Air into Retina and non-Retina lines as it has for the MacBook Pro, or offer Retina displays as higher-end options on a unified lineup.

Article Link: Redesigned MacBook Air Reportedly Planned for 3Q 2013 Launch, Possibly with Retina Display

About time. I guess if it was their flagship product it would've had Retina before the MacBook Pro.
 
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FSMBP

macrumors 68030
Jan 22, 2009
2,535
1,562
Don't they already have 13" Air Retinas...13" rMBP? It's not like Apple didn't try to design the 13" rMBP to be as thin as possible.
 
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Dwalls90

Contributor
Feb 5, 2009
5,006
2,966
That would almost require a dedicated GPU, and would provide too much cross over with the Air and Pro w/ Retina. I don't think the 11" could drive retina, and there is already a 13" Pro w/ retina.

Seems like a bogus rumor.
 
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Gemütlichkeit

macrumors 65816
Nov 17, 2010
1,276
0
Call me crazy but the Air doesn't need retina or any of the performance hits when it comes to displaying that high of a resolution on a portable machine.

The pixel density is already good :confused:
 
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S

syd430

Guest
If it gets any thinner and lighter I will have to find a Surface Pro to use as a weight so it doesn't float away
 
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pancakedrawer

macrumors regular
Dec 13, 2010
190
6
Melbourne
Retina isn't going to happen without discrete graphics. The current rMBPs struggle as it is and Apple will want something to differentiate the two lineups.
MacBook Airs are about portability and affordability.
 
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iphone495

macrumors member
Sep 13, 2012
86
0
I would be shocked if the next MacBook Air doesn't come with a retina display. REAL SHOCKED!
 
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Astroexe

macrumors member
Feb 19, 2012
57
0
Netherlands
Of course the next line is going to have Retina, the question is, however, what else?

If Apple really want to make this product the next thing in their range along an iPad they're going to need something else than super-thin.. maybe Microsoft's "Surface" Tablet-and-PC-hybrid will have an effect on Apple's flagship Light, Portable and Ultra-useable Notebook.
 
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smiddlehurst

macrumors 65816
Jun 5, 2007
1,226
22
That would almost require a dedicated GPU, and would provide too much cross over with the Air and Pro w/ Retina.

Nah, the 13" rMBP doesn't have a discrete GPU and it manages just fine. With the big improvements Haswell should bring to that side of Intel's processor offerings running the display shouldn't be an issue. What may be more of a problem though is the CPU requirements that are causing trouble on the current rMBP's when it comes to maintaining the framerate of the OS. If Apple can't resolve that via software the lower power CPU's in the Air's might really struggle to deliver a solid user experience.

Honestly though the bit that would worry me is power requirements for that screen. This being Apple I'm sure they'll work it out before launching a retina Air but unless they've got something up their sleeves in terms of display tech I'd think getting one out this year might be tricky. As always it'll be interesting to see where this goes...
 
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maccuser

macrumors regular
Aug 28, 2007
108
14
Retina isn't going to happen without discrete graphics. The current rMBPs struggle as it is and Apple will want something to differentiate the two lineups.
MacBook Airs are about portability and affordability.

Thats if they choose retina it comes after June (Hassewell) which doubles the current graphics performance and has a better battery life

seems plausible to me
 
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Cynicalone

macrumors 68040
Jul 9, 2008
3,212
0
Okie land
We are headed to a point where the Air & Pro line's will be consolidated. The Air with Retina display would be one step closer to that.

Eventually you will just have the 11, 13, 15 inch MacBook with Retina Display.

I think this year it is more likely that we would see a 1080p IPS panel in the Air, at least the 13 inch model.
 
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Dionte

macrumors 6502a
Aug 29, 2011
559
63
Detroit
Thanks for the heads up, soon I will need a new laptop to replace the brick I currently carry around.
 
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syd430

Guest
Retina isn't going to happen without discrete graphics. The current rMBPs struggle as it is and Apple will want something to differentiate the two lineups.

They will just introduce Retina on Air and add a discrete GPU to the 13" rMBP. Problem solved ;)
 
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Heresiarch

macrumors member
Jun 17, 2012
77
0
Netherlands
MacBook Air with Retina will be a complete overlap of the 13" MBP Retina. Call me crazy but I think a even thinner and lighter MBA without retina will be much more attractive.

Unless of course, they could somehow make a MBA with Retina while still retain the MBA form, and somehow make a 13" MBP with Retina but this time with a DGPU in it, then it'll make sense to have both products coexisting.
 
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