We’ve been hearing rumors about a new, larger MacBook Air for a while now, but according to a new report from an accurate source, the laptop might make finally make its debut in the next few months.
According to a report via Twitter to his super followers, Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants, claims that display panels for a 15.5-inch MacBook Air will start production in the first quarter of 2023, which means the new laptop could be revealed in the spring. Apple is reportedly planning several Mac announcements at its annual spring event, including refreshes to the MacBook Pro and Mac mini, and possibly a revival of the iMac Pro.
A 15.5-inch MacBook Air would place it, size-wise, between the 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro. But the key technical differentiator between the displays is that the MacBook Pros use a Liquid Retina XDR mini-LED display with ProMotion, while the current MacBook Air uses a standard LED display. Young previously reported that the new MacBook Air would not gain the high-end features that are exclusive to the MacBook Pro.
Since Young is a display specialist, he doesn’t provide any insight into the other components or features that could be in the new MacBook Air, such as the processor and design. The newest model has an M2 chip and received a significant redesign this past spring. It’s likely that a larger MacBook Air would be extremely similar but with a bigger display. However, we’ve heard that Apple is ramping up production of the M3 chip in 2023, so it’s possible that it gets a newer chip.
The question is where it fits in Apple’s lineup. The M1 MacBook Air is $999, the M2 MacBook Air starts at $1,199, the 13-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,299, and the 14-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,999. Presumably, a 15.5-inch MacBook Air would cost around $1,499, not unlike the price difference between the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, making the 13-inch MacBook Pro that much more irrelevant.
When Apple first released the MacBook Air in 2008, it came with a 13-inch display, a size Apple continues to offer to this day. In 2010, Apple expanded the lineup with a smaller, 11-inch model that was discontinued in 2016. Apple currently sells two versions of the MacBook Air in very similar sizes—an M1 model with a 13.3-inch display for $999 and an M2 model with a 13.6-inch display.