Apple mulling carbon-fiber parts for MacBook Air?

The MacBook Air can never be too thin, in Apple's mind, if it really is considering an expensive material that would shed just 0.2 pounds in weight.

Tom Krazit Former Staff writer, CNET News
Tom Krazit writes about the ever-expanding world of Google, as the most prominent company on the Internet defends its search juggernaut while expanding into nearly anything it thinks possible. He has previously written about Apple, the traditional PC industry, and chip companies. E-mail Tom.
Tom Krazit
A new carbon-fiber cover for the underside of the MacBook Air could help the notebook lose some weight. Apple

Apple may be searching for ways to make the MacBook Air even lighter.

AppleInsider reports that the company is investigating using materials enhanced with carbon fibers in some of the parts on a future MacBook Air. Given the time and energy Apple poured into the latest redesign of its notebooks, developing a new unibody chassis milled from a single block of aluminum, it's unlikely that the entire chassis would be replaced anytime soon.

But AppleInsider thinks the company could shave 0.22 pounds off the overall weight of the Air if it used some sort of carbon-fiber material for the bottom cover of the notebook. That may not sound like a lot, but it's within shouting distance of 10 percent, and could make for a really nice marketing slogan at some point in the future.

Apple considers the MacBook Air a sort of halo product for the Mac lineup, a demonstration of its engineering prowess that it knows won't be adopted by the mass market. Given the weight-loss formula could increase the production costs of the system, any future carbon-fiber MacBook Air would likely stay in that category.