Who's going to buy a new 2018 Air, and why?

Howard2k

macrumors 68030
Mar 10, 2016
2,558
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My arguments are simple:

First, I am ok with the introductory price of the MBA. It is $100 less than the 2010 introductory price. So, while the technology has significantly improved over 8 years, the introductory price has dropped. Also, you shouldn’t compare the price of the new MBA to the current price of the old MBA, since the old one was in production for 8 years and has been cost optimized.

Second, you quoted a price of $899, and I am wondering where you got that number. Apple is selling an inferior rMB that has had more production optimization for $1,299, or $100 more than the new MBA. Why would you expect them to sell the new MBA for $400 less than this price point?

What is your reference point? Clearly it isn’t the introductory price of the MBA, which is lower than it was 8 years ago. Clearly, it isn’t the current prices of Apple’s other laptop offerings. So, are you just complaining because Apple won’t sell you a laptop at a price that is $400 below the historical or current pricing structure? Honestly, I don’t understand the expectation.
It’s irrelevant in either case. Apple sets the price of the MBA based in the highest price they believe that people will pay. The price of the previous MBA has no relevance. The prices of the current MacBook options are what it needs to be compared too.
 

marcel500

macrumors regular
Nov 18, 2006
172
35
I already placed an order for the base model, space grey. I don’t need much, just a more portable device with macOS.

I’ve had issues with two different MBP variants, so I’ll try my luck with the air. I’m excited for the Touch ID, which I liked on the MBP.
Same reason for me
 

stratokaster

macrumors member
Jul 30, 2011
73
54
Dublin, IE
After some painful deliberation, I decided to get the new MBA. Already ordered one with 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD and AppleCare+. The price of this thing is eye-watering (1961€ with educational discount), but I hope it serves me well for several years.

My reasons for getting it:

1) I know that 3rd gen butterfly keyboard is still a POS, however, there's no going back to 2015 MBP for me because I have a USB-C docking station and a sizeable number of USB-C peripherals that I bought over the last 2 years.

2) It looks like the performance should be very similar to my 2016 nTB MBP which is fine for my purposes. Battery life should be a nice improvement over my MBP.

3) I simply adore my wife's 12" MacBook, however I can't live with a single USB-C port. Two ports are OK. While the new MBA is still quite a bit larger and heavier than the MacBook, it's noticeably lighter than the MBP, and the power brick is smaller and lighter as well. In my book, "more portable" = "better". The best computer is the one you have with you :)

4) I could get a 13" 2018 MBP, however I don't like TouchBar. In fact, I would gladly pay more for the same laptop without TouchBar but with TouchID, and that's exactly what 2018 MBA provides.

5) I have a reasonably beefy Linux desktop with a Core i7 CPU and a NVIDIA GPU which I can use to run GPU-accelerated workloads. I can also use my iPad Pro for photo editing in Lightroom CC which is (surprisingly) much faster on iPad Pro than on any Mac I can afford.

What I will use it for:

1) Light coding / web development (this is possible on iOS to a certain extent, but definitely isn't practical)
2) Writing and formatting papers with LaTex/Groff (LaTex is possible on iOS thanks to TexPad, but groff isn't)
3) Filing and paying my taxes (this requires Java which doesn't run on iOS)
4) Light photo editing and printing (printing especially is much less painful than on iOS)
5) General multitasking which isn't always optimal on iPad
6) This laptop should hopefully get me through my part-time computer science programme.

So yes, if iOS was a bit more open and flexible, I wouldn't need a laptop at all, but currently I have to have a laptop and I want it to be a Mac.
 
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abeagler

macrumors newbie
Nov 4, 2018
3
0
4) I could get a 13" 2018 MBP, however I don't like TouchBar. In fact, I would gladly pay more for the same laptop without TouchBar but with TouchID, and that's exactly what 2018 MBA provides.
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That's sort of where I am. I like the nTB MBP, but would prefer the third-gen keyboard. I would not be surprised if down the road we get an OS X version that requires a T1 or T2 processor, but I think the touch bar is dead-end tech that is already more or less abandoned. So, ideal would be a nTB MBP with Touch ID, but that doesn't appear to be happening. Past that I guess I'd choose between a refurb TB MBP or the new MBA.

I'd been ready to buy a new MBA, but absent a really nice sale I think I'll stick with my 2015 MBA for the foreseeable future.
 

cyberone

macrumors 6502
Oct 24, 2005
283
38
My hesitation is whether Windows Parallels will work smooth and snappy on this machine. Have some software like Microsoft Publisher that has no Mac equivalent.

Tired of carrying an old Windows machine around just for the purpose of Publisher...

Or MBP only for Windows Parallels?
 

Falcon80

macrumors 6502
Oct 27, 2012
373
94
My hesitation is whether Windows Parallels will work smooth and snappy on this machine. Have some software like Microsoft Publisher that has no Mac equivalent.

Tired of carrying an old Windows machine around just for the purpose of Publisher...

Or MBP only for Windows Parallels?
Interested to know as well as I am using Windows Parallels on my iMac.
 

Howard2k

macrumors 68030
Mar 10, 2016
2,558
1,821
I’m skeptical of parallels.

I would wait for benchmarks but my gut feel is that the non-TB Pro, while dated, will work harder for longer, and might be a better option.

Again, I’d wait for real specs and benchmarks.

It’s surprising we haven’t seen any deep reviews yet.
 
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Mattsasa

macrumors 68020
Apr 12, 2010
2,328
735
Minnesota
The MacBook Air is the perfect notebook for me that I have been waiting for Apple to make for years.

It exactly fits my needs and desires.

I am ordering the MacBook Air 16GB 512GB for $1800

and also ordering a Matebook X Pro with similar specs for $1500 (would run Ubuntu 18)

Will pick one of these 2 laptops I like better and return the other.
 

Cape Dave

macrumors 68000
Nov 16, 2012
1,931
1,071
Northeast
Ordered MBA 16GB, 512GB, Space Grey. Downsizing from a 2014 15" MBP.

It meets my wish list of smaller, lighter, 8th-gen processor, Touch ID, Retina display, great battery life and no Touch Bar.

And it also looks very cool. :cool:
NO touchbar! That alone is reason enough for me to buy :) I hate that thing with a passion.
 
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raqball

macrumors 68000
Sep 11, 2016
1,948
8,890
I am still undecided.. If I do get one it won't be a serious use machine and I'll go base, bottom of the barrel 8 / 128 version.. Mainly to surf the web and do light office tasks..

Still debating between it @ $1199 or a base iPad Pro 12.9" with KB at the same $1199.. I am leaning towards the iPad but might change my mind...
 
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Mainsail

macrumors 65816
Sep 19, 2010
1,137
980
I am still undecided.. If I do get one it won't be a serious use machine and I'll go base, bottom of the barrel 8 / 128 version.. Mainly to surf the web and do light office tasks..

Still debating between it @ $1199 or a base iPad Pro 12.9" with KB at the same $1199.. I am leaning towards the iPad but might change my mind...
I am in a similar situation. When I look at my usage: mail, safari, iWork, notes, photo app/edits, maybe simple iMovie, Books/PDFs, it seems like I don’t really need a full MacOS. I can do most of this stuff easily on my $300 2017 iPad. So, I am wondering if I would be happier with an iPad Pro + KB case. Also, I think Apple is investing more into mobile technology.....both hardware and software. Like others, I suspect iOS13 could be a significant jump forward for productivity. Nevertheless, I love my 2014 MBA and this new MBA is very tempting.

Tough choices. First world problems.
 
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otherguy5

macrumors member
Feb 2, 2015
59
4
Simply put, what other options do I have for someone who needs a laptop and intensely dislikes Windows 10?


My needs are fairly simple. Basically surf the net, watch and listen to media, and write and read documents - all allowing me to have multiple applications open, and all feeling as if it were seamless and smooth to go back and forth from. Now one would think that that would not require a lot of power, but you'd be surprised how much RAM and CPU gets used up even for these simple tasks. Yeah, I considered going the Chromebook route, but the high end ones are far too pricey for what you get back. Plus, I need something that I can at least get the battery replaced and have the device retain their value so that I can sell it. All in all, as much as it's painful given the price point, the Macbook Air seems like the best option for me. My main worry is the 3rd gen keyboard.
 

Dave245

macrumors 604
Sep 15, 2013
7,331
5,188
If it's the same KB as the 2018 Pros (very likely) it's already been shown debris can still work it's way inside the mechanism, it's not fully sealed.
It’s suppose to be 4X more stable according to the keynote, also didn’t they put a membrane in the 2018 keyboard in order to reduce the risk of it happening?
 

Falhófnir

macrumors 68040
Aug 19, 2017
3,474
3,862
It’s suppose to be 4X more stable according to the keynote, also didn’t they put a membrane in the 2018 keyboard in order to reduce the risk of it happening?
Yes the mechanism reduces key wobble, it also didn't have to be made to only depress 0.5mm; indeed some windows machines (and even Apple's own magic keyboard) have achieved more stable keys using a scissor mechanism. Keyword being reduce or even better yet delay the risk, not eliminate it or deal with the underlying causes. It's quite literally a sticking plaster over a problem rather than a remedy.
 
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in2tech

macrumors regular
Aug 23, 2012
131
6
I'll get the base model early next year, as long as there aren't keyboard reliability issues. I will have to wait for a few of months to see if there are reports of failures similar to the Gen 3 keyboard on the MBP 2018. If so, then I will hold onto my 2014 MBA until Apple figures this thing out.....which could be a couple of years.

Otherwise, it checks all of the boxes for me:
  • Long battery life....which is owing to the low power CPU. Sorry, you don't get something for nothing
  • Retina Display
  • Touch ID
  • USB - C
  • Much smaller foot print and smaller bezels than my current MBA
There have been a lot of complaints about the low power Y CPU. This is just not going to be a problem for me. The early geek bench data looks fine for my purposes: Mail, Messages, Calendar/Reminders, Safari, iWork, Notes, editing in Photo app, and occasional short video creation with iMovie.....usually just glorified family event slideshows. My 2014 MBA has 4GB of RAM and a slower processor, so this new MBA will be a performance improvement for me.
[doublepost=1541272716][/doublepost]

When the wedge shaped MBA model first came out in 2010, it was $1,299. This is not to be confused with the 2008 model, which was a different body style and design and retailed for $1,799. Anyway, the 2010 model added numerous improvements over the years: 2GB RAM went to 8GB RAM standard, Better CPU and other internals, Thunderbolt 2, Backlit keyboard, etc... Meanwhile, as production ramped up and components became more readily available, the price drifted down from $1,299 to $999. I think it is a little unreasonable to expect the the new MBA model would be priced at the same $999 as the older MBA model, which has been optimized over 8 years of production.

Honestly, I think the introductory price for the new MBA is ok. It is $100 less than the 2010 introductory price, and it is a far superior machine.
This is what I am waiting on and expecting. Over the years the price will drop to the $999 ( maybe retail stores will offer an additional discount or online retailers) , and at that point I would imagine the OLD air will be dropped if not sooner than that ( like maybe even next year ). And it also might get a few minor updates to the rMBA in the next few years, I will be in the market for a rMBA! Best of luck to everyone getting one now. Let us know what you think!