After introducing the new MacBook Pro and iMac in 2021, Apple is rumored to be planning a completely revamped MacBook Air sometime in 2022.
The 2022 MacBook Air could feature a new design, a new M2 processor inside, and more. Head below as we round up all the rumors we’ve heard about the new MacBook Air so far.
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MacBook Air 2022
Just like the new 24-inch iMac and the new MacBook Pro, one of the biggest changes to the 2022 MacBook Air is expected to be its design. Leaker Jon Prosser said that the new MacBook Air will have a flat-edged design, which will notably mean the end of the iconic MacBook Air’s tapered body.
Since its introduction by Steve Jobs, the MacBook Air has a curved design that is slimmer in the front and thicker in the back. This leads to the illusion that the MacBook Air is much thinner than it actually is. The renders shared by Prosser, which are allegedly created based on photorealistic images, show the MacBook Air with a flat-edged design similar to the iPad Pro and iPad Air.
Prosser and trusted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo both report that the 2022 MacBook Air will come in additional colors, similar to those of the 24-inch iMac.
Other design tweaks we’re looking at with the new MacBook Air are said to include a white keyboard for the first time, as well as white bezels around the display. Again, this would be similar to the 24-inch iMac, which also features white bezels.
If all of these rumored changes pay off, it’s likely that the new MacBook Air’s design will be completely flat on the back and front. As we’ve seen with the 24-inch iMac, not everyone likes the different color options and white bezels. We’ll have to wait and see if Apple makes any design tweaks when it comes to the MacBook Air to address these concerns.
CPU M2 Chip
The new MacBook Air is expected to be the first Mac with Apple’s next-generation M2 chip. Designed for the perfect balance between power and efficiency, the M2 chip will be the direct successor to the M1, but it won’t be as powerful as the M1 Pro and M1 Max.
According to a report from Bloomberg earlier this year, the M2 processor will have the same number of computing cores as the M1 but run faster. Additionally, it will have an increased number of graphics cores, with configuration options changing from seven or eight to nine or ten.
It remains to be seen whether or not the M2 chip will address some of the limitations of the M1 chip. For example, the M1 chip is limited to one external display and two Thunderbolt ports. Ideally, the M2 chip will alleviate some of these concerns, but only time will tell.
With the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models introduced in 2021, Apple is expanding its premium Liquid Retina XDR display technology — or mini-LED — to Macs for the first time. According to a number of rumors, the 2022 MacBook Air is also expected to feature a mini-LED panel.
But while the MacBook Air is said to have mini-LED technology, ProMotion isn’t among the expected features. ProMotion is Apple’s variable refresh rate technology used in the iPad Pro, iPhone 13 Pro, and MacBook Pro, allowing screens to refresh at 120Hz.
Finally, what about the bump? Some leakers have claimed that, just like the new MacBook Pro, the 2022 MacBook Air will also have a small hole. This will allow Apple to reduce the size of the bezels around the screen and place the FaceTime camera inside the bump.
While the new MacBook Pro signals the return of ports like the HDMI connector and SD card slot, the 2022 MacBook Air isn’t expected to get the same treatment. Instead, the new MacBook Air is rumored to have two Thunderbolt ports, one on either side.
On the bright side, leaker Dylandkt, who accurately predicted many details about the new iMac and MacBook Pro models, reports that the new MacBook Air will have MagSafe for charging. In theory, this could mean that your new MacBook Air has two Thunderbolt ports for charging and other needs, plus MagSafe for charging only.
Finally, Prosser and other sources indicated that it is possible, but not guaranteed, that Apple will abandon the MacBook Air branding. Alternatively, this device may simply be referred to as a “MacBook.”
It’s important to keep in mind that Apple’s marketing plans are generally kept secret until the last minute.
Availability and pricing
So when will you actually be able to buy that new MacBook? According to multiple sources, the new MacBook is slated for a release sometime during mid-2022. This could mean that Apple is announcing a special event in March, or that it’s holding it at WWDC in June.
In terms of pricing, the new MacBook Air is said to be “a bit” more expensive than the current MacBook Air, which starts at $999. This is likely due to the added cost of mini-LED display technology.