Apple’s latest MacBook Air has arrived.
During a hardware event on Tuesday, Apple took the wraps off the new MacBook Air, Apple’s thinnest and lightest laptop. The event was Apple’s third in three months following its iPhone event in October and the unveiling of its new line of Apple Watches in September.
The new MacBook Air will have improved performance and better battery life than is predecessor, a higher-quality camera, Touch ID, and more vibrant display. Apple says the MacBook Air will not have a fan, meaning it’s completely silent.
The MacBook Air starts at $999, and $899 for education.
The new laptop is notable because it contains Apple’s new M1, a new computer chip designed in-house. Previous MacBooks have run on Intel’s chips, making this shift the biggest change to Apple’s Mac lineup in years.
The homemade processor will offer several key advantages for Apple: Because the chips are based on Apple's A14 Bionic processor — which currently powers iPhones and iPads — the Mac experience will feel more consistent with that of Apple's other hardware products.
The M1 chips should also offer better power efficiency and improvements to machine learning, and because all of Apple's devices will now run on the same architecture, iPhone and iPad apps will now run directly on MacBooks.
During Apple's WWDC event earlier this year, CEO Tim Cook said the transition to Apple silicon will help the company bring new products to life — Apple will have more flexibility when it comes to releasing new Macs, since it won't have to rely on a third-party for the chips, and it should be able to more easily integrate hardware and software features on the Mac.
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