Suppliers hint at changes to MacBook Air -- Digitimes

While it's a given that the MacBook Air is coming up for a redesign, it's a question of degree. The industrial design won't change much, according to a report from the Taiwanese site.

The MacBook Air's industrial design to see few changes? That's what an Asia-based report claims.
The MacBook Air's industrial design to see few changes? That's what an Asia-based report claims. Apple

One of the first MacBook Air rumors of the season alludes to internal changes but few external tweaks.

A fresh report from the not-always-reliable Taipei-based Digitimes claims the "industrial design will not see any major changes" in 2013.

Apple introduced the accentuated wedge aesthetic in late 2010 (see photo above), so about a year and a half will have transpired if new MBAs are introduced in the first half of 2013.

The report makes no mention of displays, but that's an area of intense focus for Apple. The high end of the MacBook Pro line now sports Retina displays with edge-to-edge glass versus the wide metal bezel on the non-Retina Airs.

And there has been little, if any, chatter in the Asia supply chain so far about Retina-equipped MBAs.

But one thing is certain -- a new chip platform, which Digitimes does mention. Intel is expected to introduce its fourth generation Core "Haswell" processor at the Consumer Electronics Show in January. That processor should make its way into new MacBooks by midyear.

Haswell is all about better power efficiency. So, Apple could feasibly squeeze Haswell into the same or slightly thinner design with longer battery life. Haswell is also expected to include a graphics processing unit (GPU) that delivers a bigger jump in performance compared with past generations of Core processors.

Both 13- and 15-inch MacBook Pros have donned Retina displays.  Would Apple go there with the MacBook Air?
Both 13- and 15-inch MacBook Pros have donned Retina displays. Would Apple go there with the MacBook Air? Apple
About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.

 

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