The new MacBook retains the same chassis as the previous version. It's already been a year since that one came out and now CNET editor Dan Ackerman has seriously warmed up to the size -- it's become his default go-to for instances when he needs a laptop that's quick and easy to use.
One thing you might miss if you're switching over from a Windows laptop is the lack of a touchscreen, although Apple's intuitive multitouch touchpad gestures make up for a least some of that missing functionality.
According to Dan's review of the original 12-inch MacBook last year, you probably won't fall in love with the keyboard right away (which remains unchanged on this update), but over time he grew to like it more than he expected.
The nearly edge-to-edge keyboard has larger key faces than you're used to with legacy models, but the keys are also shallow, barely popping up above the keyboard tray and depressing into the chassis only slightly.
The overall shape and industrial design is familiar, based on the past seven-plus years of MacBook design, but with the same super-thin design that we saw debut in the last model. Here it is sitting on a MacBook Air.
The new MacBook starts with a current-gen Intel Core M3 processor, the step-up chip from the first-generation Intel Core M in the 2015 model. While faster, it's not as muscular as Intel's full-fledged Core-i processors found in all Apple's other Macs.
With this 2016 update, Apple has addressed some, but not all, of the issues with the original. Based on our CNET Labs testing in other computers with the second generation of Core M processors (confusingly part of Intel's sixth generation of Core chips, also known by the code name Skylake).
It's still certainly a limitation to have only a single USB-C port for all your connection needs (with the exception of a standard audio jack that also made the cut), so be prepared to arm yourself with a pocketful of dongles and adaptors.
The $1,599/£1,299 step-up Core M5 version still features 8GB RAM and a 512GB SSD, too. But the MacBooks get improved Intel HD Graphics 515, faster PCIe flash storage and an optional extra upgrade to a 1.3GHz Core M7 processor.