13-inch MacBook joins Pro family, Air gets updated

Not to be left out, the MacBook's been updated too, and it's no longer just a MacBook. Also: the MacBook Air gets a price cut.

Apple's entire laptop line gets revamped. CNET

Not to be left out, the MacBook's been updated too, and it's no longer just a MacBook. Following in the wake of the 15-inch MacBook Pro updates , the 13-inchers will also be called MacBook Pros (because as Phil Schiller noted onstage, "At what point isn't this just a MacBook Pro?") The mid-range unibody aluminum laptops launched last October now have upgraded color screens, SD card slots, FireWire 800 ports, and backlit keyboards across the board. Prices start at $1,199, $100 less than before for the low-end aluminum MacBook, for an upgraded 2.26 GHz Core 2 Duo with 2 GB DDR3 RAM, GeForce 9400M graphics, and a 160 GB HDD. $1,499 gets you a 2.53 GHz Core 2 Duo, 4 GB of DDR3, and a 250 GB hard drive. RAM can now be expanded up to 8 GB, and hard drives can be upgraded up to 500 GB.

They will also have non-removable 7-hour batteries. This makes the entire Apple laptop line a family of sealed-in batteries, except for the lowest-end white MacBook, whose specs were bumped last week.

Also updated, to some applause, was the MacBook Air, upgrading the processor speed to 2.14 GHz and lowering the price range, now $1,499 to $1,799. That's required in light of CULV Windows laptops that are emerging at very competitive price points. It's available in two configurations: $1,199 for a 1.86 GHz Core 2 Duo, 2 GB DDR3 RAM, GeForce 9400M graphics, and 120 GB HDD, or $1,799 with a 2.13 GHz Core 2 Duo and 128 GB SSD. For the SSD model, the cost is $700 less than before.

About the author

Scott Stein is a senior editor covering iOS and laptop reviews, mobile computing, video games, and tech culture. He has previously written for both mainstream and technology enthusiast publications including Wired, Esquire.com, Men's Journal, and Maxim, and regularly appears on TV and radio talking tech trends.


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