Report: Apple will finally give us Retina MacBook Air, new Mac Mini

We've been waiting half a decade for Apple to update the MacBook Air's screen.

Sean Hollister Senior Editor / Reviews
When his parents denied him a Super NES, he got mad. When they traded a prize Sega Genesis for a 2400 baud modem, he got even. Years of Internet shareware, eBay'd possessions and video game testing jobs after that, he joined Engadget. He helped found The Verge, and later served as Gizmodo's reviews editor. When he's not madly testing laptops, apps, virtual reality experiences, and whatever new gadget will supposedly change the world, he likes to kick back with some games, a good Nerf blaster, and a bottle of Tejava.
Sean Hollister
2 min read

We've been staring at the MacBook Air's low-resolution display for far too long.

Sarah Tew/CNET

I can't believe it's actually happening. Seriously, I can't and won't believe until Apple says it on stage -- Bloomberg reports that Apple is finally updating its Mac mini desktop, and updating its lowest cost MacBook with a high-resolution Retina Display screen.

Technically, Bloomberg says it's a new low-cost MacBook, not necessarily a MacBook Air, which lines up with rumors we've heard before. But the publication also says it'll look like a MacBook Air and will have a similar size screen around 13 inches. If it quacks like a duck... 

Some context: 

  • The Mac Mini hasn't been updated since October 2014. Your phone might legitimately be more powerful than a Mac Mini today. CNET's Ian Sherr gave up waiting, and built his own Hackintosh in protest.
  • We've been wondering why the heck Apple wouldn't give the $1,000 MacBook Air a competitive, high-resolution screen since 2013 -- five years ago. And though other components have been updated since, the laptop's basically been in a holding pattern since 2015

We've heard rumors that these updates might finally come to pass, but they've been wrong before, so we're still taking this report with a grain of salt. 

But Apple CEO Tim Cook did recently hint that the Mac Mini was still on his mind...  and Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who's got a solid track record for Apple predictions, did suggest that we'd see a new MacBook and the return of the Mac mini this year.  

Bloomberg says the Mac mini will be focused on pro users, which makes us wonder if it'll lean heavily on external graphics boxes. Apple's been building support for those, and TechCrunch got a sense from a recent Apple tour that modular processing power might be key to Apple's pro strategy going forward.

Apple declined to comment.