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avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
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Im starting to struggle with multi tasking on a small 13 inch screen. At home Im plugged into a monitor, but when Im away its getting to be a pain. Is there a reason they don't make larger mb airs? Was there ever a 15 inch one previously? The 16inch pro is just too expensive when I don't actually need the power it brings, but Id really love a larger screen. Does anyone else feel like a 16 inch non-pro version would be perfect for them?
 
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Geepaw

macrumors regular
Jan 15, 2021
131
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I think there should be a Pro model and an Air model at 16". The Air should be for mobility (thin/light/minimal ports) and the Pro should be more desktop for replacement. It does not make sense to have the Pro and Air to be so similar product lines with the same chipset even.
 
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retta283

Cancelled
Jun 8, 2018
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16" seems like a lot for a consumer laptop focused on portability. I can see it going to 14" but that's it.

13.3" is the largest size the MacBook Air has ever been offered in. There was also an 11.6" model that was targeted to replace netbooks, from 2010-2016.
 

avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
58
29
Probably correct on portability. Although there are probably many aging sets of eyes out there that would be grateful for it :) If I have to buy the pro its about 2,500 pounds here....and all I will use it for is word processing/email/internet browsing. The current 16inch is complete overkill and way over budget for my needs. But I feel stuck as am struggling with the 13 inch screen :(
 
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avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
58
29
I think there should be a Pro model and an Air model at 16". The Air should be for mobility (thin/light/minimal ports) and the Pro should be more desktop for replacement. It does not make sense to have the Pro and Air to be so similar product lines with the same chipset even.
Yes, I definitely agree. I just want more screen real estate, I dont need a very powerful machine. My current 5-6 yr old 13inch pro still does everything I need without any issues (other than it cant grow a bigger screen :p)
 

James_C

macrumors 68030
Sep 13, 2002
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The Air is currently the entry level Mac Laptop, I can't see Apple bringing out a 16" Air, it would confuse the Price structure between the entry level laptop (Air) and the more expensive Pro line. It looks like Apple may be dropping the Touch Bar for the new Apple Silicon Pro's, which is why I and a few others went for the M1 Air, as I have used the Touch Bar and hated it. I would agree with you a 16" Air with the MBA design would be nice, but I can't see Apple doing it.
 
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skaertus

macrumors 601
Feb 23, 2009
4,061
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Brazil
Im starting to struggle with multi tasking on a small 13 inch screen. At home Im plugged into a monitor, but when Im away its getting to be a pain. Is there a reason they don't make larger mb airs? Was there ever a 15 inch one previously? The 16inch pro is just too expensive when I don't actually need the power it brings, but Id really love a larger screen. Does anyone else feel like a 16 inch non-pro version would be perfect for them?
I agree with you. But looking at Apple's price structure, even if they released a 16-inch Air, it would probably cost around $2,000. Due to the nature of things I do with my computer, I benefit a lot from larger screens.

I do not need all the horsepower that Apple usually attributes to larger screen products. I do not edit photos or videos, and I am not a creative artist. I can hardly justify buying a 16-inch MacBook Pro to use Microsoft Word. Or buying a 12.9-inch iPad Pro to read PDFs. However, this sort of work (reading/writing), even though it is not hardware intensive, largely benefits from a large screen. Apple either seems to ignore that or compels users to pay a premium to have access to such screens.

The bottom line is that I would love a cheaper 12.9-inch iPad or a 16-inch MacBook, even if that meant less processing power. It is very frustrating that Apple does not provide such products and one of the reasons that made me move away from Apple's offerings.
 

avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
58
29
I agree with you. But looking at Apple's price structure, even if they released a 16-inch Air, it would probably cost around $2,000. Due to the nature of things I do with my computer, I benefit a lot from larger screens.

I do not need all the horsepower that Apple usually attributes to larger screen products. I do not edit photos or videos, and I am not a creative artist. I can hardly justify buying a 16-inch MacBook Pro to use Microsoft Word. Or buying a 12.9-inch iPad Pro to read PDFs. However, this sort of work (reading/writing), even though it is not hardware intensive, largely benefits from a large screen. Apple either seems to ignore that or compels users to pay a premium to have access to such screens.

The bottom line is that I would love a cheaper 12.9-inch iPad or a 16-inch MacBook, even if that meant less processing power. It is very frustrating that Apple does not provide such products and one of the reasons that made me move away from Apple's offerings.
I was recently looking at the refurb stores for 16inch pros but I just cant justify the cost when it will mainly be used for word processing. It would be complete overkill for my needs (and for a lot of people I would imagine). Sadly I am also starting to look at other brands at the moment. A 13 inch just isnt cutting it for me anymore when I need to have multiple documents open and I really need to get something bigger relatively soon....before my poor eyeballs explode. Its a pity - I think they would definitely have a market for a non pro, cheaper, larger screen. I have noticed at work that similar aged colleagues seem to be going for 15 inch laptops now more and more. There is a point in life where portability is no longer the priority - I'm not lugging it around all day. It usually goes house --> car --> place I need to use it. Ditto for ipads - Im sure the last ipad air flew off the shelves as its just more affordable. A 12.9 inch version without all the bells and whistles of the pro would probably do very well (Id certainly pick one up). They have done this with the iPhone to a certain extent - I hope they will eventually follow suit with the mac too.
 
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Falhófnir

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Aug 19, 2017
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Some sort of lower cost option with a larger screen would be ideal. That could take any number of forms, but from a recent rumour it seems Apple experimented with a 15" Air and decided not to proceed to market with it for whatever reason. It's odd Apple's cottoned on to the idea people like larger screens at all price segments for all their product lines except the MacBooks. iPhones keep getting bigger, iPads keep getting bigger, even the watches keep getting bigger. Yet Apple continue to insist if you want a larger than 13" laptop display you must be a video editor or something and want more power to go with it.

16" might be too big for an entry level and portability focused line like the Air, though I would say a 15" would be absolutely perfect. 14" is too small, it doesn't fundamentally change what you can do on the built in display vs a 13.3".

Perhaps a better option would be to use the previous 15" MacBook Pro chassis with the new keyboard and an M1 chip, but just call it the 15" MacBook. the M1 MacBook Pro could be rebranded to sit alongside it as a 13" MacBook, so you end up with a 13" portability focused Air, 13 & 15 inch all rounders, and 14 & 16 inch Pros. That sounds like a lot of models, but it's only one more than now, and each has a more defined use case than the 13.3" heavy muddle they've got at the moment.
 

avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
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29
16" might be too big for an entry level and portability focused line like the Air, though I would say a 15" would be absolutely perfect. 14" is too small, it doesn't fundamentally change what you can do on the built in display vs a 13.3".
Agreed, Id be fine with 15inch if they did that. One extra model wouldnt be too much in my opinion. If it was reasonably priced (as much as can be with apple) then it would fly out the door. The current 16 inch is a great machine, but way beyond most peoples budgets - even second hand.
 

skaertus

macrumors 601
Feb 23, 2009
4,061
1,140
Brazil
I was recently looking at the refurb stores for 16inch pros but I just cant justify the cost when it will mainly be used for word processing. It would be complete overkill for my needs (and for a lot of people I would imagine). Sadly I am also starting to look at other brands at the moment. A 13 inch just isnt cutting it for me anymore when I need to have multiple documents open and I really need to get something bigger relatively soon....before my poor eyeballs explode. Its a pity - I think they would definitely have a market for a non pro, cheaper, larger screen. I have noticed at work that similar aged colleagues seem to be going for 15 inch laptops now more and more. There is a point in life where portability is no longer the priority - I'm not lugging it around all day. It usually goes house --> car --> place I need to use it. Ditto for ipads - Im sure the last ipad air flew off the shelves as its just more affordable. A 12.9 inch version without all the bells and whistles of the pro would probably do very well (Id certainly pick one up). They have done this with the iPhone to a certain extent - I hope they will eventually follow suit with the mac too.
I am not sure how Apple will handle this, but I suspect it will as it has always done: bigger should mean more powerful and more expensive. The way I see it, Apple is not really evolving in handling this situation.

5.4-inch iPhone 12 mini, $729.00
6.1-inch iPhone 12, $829.00
6.1-inch iPhone 12 Pro, $999.00
6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max, $1,099.00

10.2-inch iPad, $329.00
7.9-inch iPad mini, $399.00
10.9-inch iPad Air, $599.00
11-inch iPad Pro, $799.00
12.9-inch iPad Pro, $999.00

13-inch MacBook Air, $999.00
13-inch MacBook Pro, $1,299.00
16-inch MacBook Pro, $2,399.00

Mac mini, $699.00
21.5-inch iMac, $1,099.00
27-inch iMac, $1,799.00
27-inch iMac Pro, $4999.00
Mac Pro with 32-inch Pro Display XDR, $10,998.00

There is no 6.7-inch non-Pro iPhone. There is no 12.9-inch non-Pro iPad. There is no 16-inch non-Pro MacBook. And no iMac with a 32-inch display. There are a few exceptions (the 10.2-inch iPad is cheaper than the 7.9-inch iPad mini), but the rule seems clear.

It is a pity, as not everybody is a creative designer or a professional working with photos or videos. Some of us would just benefit from larger screens to do regular office work. One can certainly connect a larger screen to a MacBook Air, but that is not possible on the go. A 16-inch laptop would be very useful for many office workers, but it is hard to justify paying $2,399.00 for it when there are other laptops costing less than a half which are perfectly capable of handling the same work without any hiccups.

In addition to price, there is portability. Apple's 16-inch MacBook Pro weighs 4.3 lbs, which is perfectly fine, especially for the size. It could be lighter, though. Apple insists on using aluminum, which makes it feel more premium, but also heavier. In addition, Apple puts a large battery to handle the dedicated video card. But the thing is, office workers would not need a dedicated video card for their work. If Apple could create a 16-inch MacBook Air, it could let go the dedicated video card and the larger battery, and make it lighter as well.

As an example of what could be, I look at the 17-inch LG Gram. It seems to be a fine laptop, with a large 17-inch 16:10 screen with a 2560x1600 resolution, a 2.98 lbs weight, a 10-hour+ battery life, and a sub-$1,500 price tag. It may not feel as premium as the 16-inch MacBook Pro, and it certainly does not have the same performance, but it would be way more suitable for many people due to the combination of its larger screen, lighter weight, lower price, and decent battery life.
 

Falhófnir

macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
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@skaertus it's true the largest size is part of the premium offering across the lineup, but unlike MacBooks, iPhones and iPads are getting bigger across the board.

iPad has gone from 9.7" to 10.2" and soon 10.5", iPad Air 10.5" to 10.9", both of these are more budget oriented options.

Excluding plus size options the core iPhone model has gone from 4"(5/s + SE) to 4.7"(6-8 + SE) to 6.1" (XR/11/12).

If the MacBooks had followed suit the MBA would be a 14" or even 15" with minimal bezel by now. You could pretty much fit a 15.0" screen in the old (2017 era) footprint, and I don't think anyone was complaining that was too big or heavy a machine.
 
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Boyd01

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 21, 2012
6,100
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New Jersey Pine Barrens
There was also an 11.6" model that was targeted to replace netbooks, from 2010-2016.

Still have my 11" 2013 MacBook Air, it was my all-time favorite Mac Laptop! No real need for a laptop now, my old eyes spend their time looking at a 32" screen on a Mac Mini. :)

I would be very surprised if Apple ever offered a 16" or 15" MacBook Air, but they regularly prove me wrong with new products!
 
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phillytim

macrumors 65816
Aug 12, 2011
1,431
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Philadelphia, PA
Unlikely. My guess is that Apple considers 16" to be Pro territory.

However - if there is money to be made, then Apple may well do it; so I'd never say never.
 
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avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
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Still have my 11" 2013 MacBook Air, it was my all-time favorite Mac Laptop! No real need for a laptop now, my old eyes spend their time looking at a 32" screen on a Mac Mini. :)

I would be very surprised if Apple ever offered a 16" or 15" MacBook Air, but they regularly prove me wrong with new products!
Unfortunately my old eyes are still required to work from multiple locations. At home Im always hooked to a monitor too :)
 

skaertus

macrumors 601
Feb 23, 2009
4,061
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Brazil
@skaertus it's true the largest size is part of the premium offering across the lineup, but unlike MacBooks, iPhones and iPads are getting bigger across the board.

iPad has gone from 9.7" to 10.2" and soon 10.5", iPad Air 10.5" to 10.9", both of these are more budget oriented options.

Excluding plus size options the core iPhone model has gone from 4"(5/s + SE) to 4.7"(6-8 + SE) to 6.1" (XR/11/12).

If the MacBooks had followed suit the MBA would be a 14" or even 15" with minimal bezel by now. You could pretty much fit a 15.0" screen in the old (2017 era) footprint, and I don't think anyone was complaining that was too big or heavy a machine.
Yes, Apple is making the screens larger, but not by much. The iPad going from 9.7" to 10.2" represents an increase of 5% over the course of years. The products are getting slightly larger, but that still does not make a huge difference for many people using them.

If you want a large iPhone, you have to disburse $1.099 to get the 6.7-inch version, because it has to be a Pro. Samsung offers the Galaxy A70, with a 6.7-inch AMOLED screen, for $350. It is certainly not half as powerful as the iPhone 12 Pro Max. Although it will not win any speed contests, it is still a capable product, with a large beautiful screen, decent cameras, and powerful enough to browse the Internet and run applications. If you are an old person with stressed eyes who praises a large screen and does need the phone to be as powerful as a computer, then perhaps a non-Apple product would better suit your needs.

Apple is making its products larger over the course of years. But perhaps it is not enough for many people. I could understand when Steve Jobs thought that Apple was offering too many choices to consumers, making it difficult for them to decide which product to buy. When Steve Jobs simplified Apple's line-up, there was little choice, but there was some reason to it. Apple offered the iPhone and the iPad in just one size each, and that was all. Now Apple offers seven different iPhone models and five different iPad models. It is already a convoluted line-up. There is no reason for Apple not to offer more affordable large-screen products, other than wanting consumers to pay a premium for them.
 

GrumpyCoder

macrumors 65816
Nov 15, 2016
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Conjecture from Max Tech at YouTube on 15" MBA:

They should just make it a 15" iPad that works like a full macOS when docked to a magic keyboard and like iPadOS when removed from the keyboard. That'd be perfect. I've gone through pretty much every hardware from Apple over the years and given I'm getting older and older, I find the 16" much more enjoyable to work on than a 13". Sure I can make the font larger but can't fit as much on the screen then (say two documents side by side). Since Apple removed support for pretty much any tools I need these days (no Nvidia, focus on Metal so working with AMD GPU for my tools is a pain, etc.), the Mac is becoming a Internet-browsing, email, research/writing and occasional photo processing / video encoding tool for me for which I won't need anything like my fully loaded MBP16 anymore. I could do with less hardware these days since I need a Linux/Nvidia box for the processing power anyway. I'd welcome a 15"/16" iPad/MBA which is more than enough for "browsing the web and reading/writing papers".
 
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theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
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This rumour is quite recent


In my view it would make more sense if we got 16" Macbook Airs differentiated from the MBP like the current 13" MBA and MBP are, since we can be about 99.9% certain that the refreshed Macbook Pro will be 16" like the current one is.

The reason for the 16" screen is because in general the more you buy of stuff, the cheaper it will be. Of course we have no real insight into Apple's deals with manufacturers, but if I am planning to make 1 million large screen Macbook Airs and 1 million large screen Macbook Pros, then it is very likely that I would pay less overall by buying 2 million 16" panels, then I would pay if I bought 1 million 15" panels and 1 million 16" panels.
 

Falhófnir

macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
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This rumour is quite recent


In my view it would make more sense if we got 16" Macbook Airs differentiated from the MBP like the current 13" MBA and MBP are, since we can be about 99.9% certain that the refreshed Macbook Pro will be 16" like the current one is.

The reason for the 16" screen is because in general the more you buy of stuff, the cheaper it will be. Of course we have no real insight into Apple's deals with manufacturers, but if I am planning to make 1 million large screen Macbook Airs and 1 million large screen Macbook Pros, then it is very likely that I would pay less overall by buying 2 million 16" panels, then I would pay if I bought 1 million 15" panels and 1 million 16" panels.
That economy of scale only works if you’re using the exact same panel in both, which doesn’t seem to be the case for the 13” Pro and Air. They have the same resolution and colour gamut but the Pro is brighter and seems to have slightly better response times, so they share some specs but likely aren’t the same panel. I would imagine if this is the case it must mean they get the Air’s panel at enough of a discount to more than cancel out any lost economy of scale savings.

I’d love to see a 16 inch air (honestly even a 17 inch) but if a larger screen MBA happens I think it’s overwhelmingly likely to either be the 13” bumped to 14”, or else eventually they cave and make the 15” option - and probably at 15.0” rather than 15.4” as the previous MacBook Pro was, to keep size and weight down a little more (and so they can still offer the 16” Pro as the ‘biggest and best’ flagship model).
 

avalon68

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 6, 2015
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It is already a convoluted line-up. There is no reason for Apple not to offer more affordable large-screen products, other than wanting consumers to pay a premium for them.
I think I disagree on this a little bit - the reason is to prevent people from switching away from apple. Im pretty much all in the apple ecosystem - Ive never really thought about other phone - just bought the iphone as it syncs with my ipad and computer. Have apple TV, iCloud subscription etc. If I have to change my laptop to a non apple product, then as I renew other things I will likely be switching to a matching ecosystem as well so they would be losing a lot of money over time. I don't want to leave, I really prefer macOS to windows and ios to android. I think even with a non pro version they would still be charging a premium - apple has never exactly been reasonably priced.
 

Wordman

macrumors regular
Jan 14, 2010
120
75
Im starting to struggle with multi tasking on a small 13 inch screen. At home Im plugged into a monitor, but when Im away its getting to be a pain. Is there a reason they don't make larger mb airs? Was there ever a 15 inch one previously? The 16inch pro is just too expensive when I don't actually need the power it brings, but Id really love a larger screen. Does anyone else feel like a 16 inch non-pro version would be perfect for them?

Yeah, I'm in the same position as you. I like the portability, don't necessarily need bags of power (I'm a writer rather than a video editor or designer), but need more screen space for multiple documents or windows. The rumoured 15" Macbook Air would be perfect.
 
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Boyd01

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 21, 2012
6,100
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New Jersey Pine Barrens
Thing is, if you actually need a laptop with a bigger screen right now, you're gonna have to pay the "Apple Tax" and get a MacBook Pro. Those rumors about the larger MacBook Air are interesting, hadn't seen them before. But they suggest it won't come for awhile. And really, it's hard to believe that Apple is too concerned about losing customers because they don't have a budget laptop with a big screen.
 
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