The super-thin, super-pretty Apple MacBook is an expensive luxury, but it also justifies its price with the fact that it’s by far the thinnest and lightest Mac notebook ever, with a full-fat, not-actually-a-tablet laptop experience in a body that weighs barely 920 grams. Apple has just given the MacBook a mid-lifecycle refresh, with Intel’s latest energy-efficient Core M chips and an extra hour of battery life.
The new-for-2016 12-inch Retina MacBook now has Intel’s sixth-generation Core M processors, which follow the same good-better-best specification as the more powerful Core i3, i5 and i7 chips. The MacBook now has three purchasable variants rather than the previous two, and is also available in a Rose Gold finish — alongside the existing silver, space grey and gold.
You’ll pay a premium for the MacBook’s crazy thin design, though — which is 13.1mm thick at its bulkiest point, tapering off along its depth. Despite the almost complete lack of internal space, Apple has crammed 10 hours’ worth of battery inside the MacBook, up from 9 hours in the previous model. That’s for Web browsing, too — use it to watch a video on a plane and you might reach 11.
The fanless MacBook has only a single port on its unibody frame, using the same USB Type-C connector as the HTC 10 and Nexus 6P smartphones for power, data and video transfer. We’d still love a second USB Type-C port on the other side of the laptop, but we’d also like more USB Type-C accesssories to hit the market too. C’est la vie.
Buying a new Apple MacBook, available today online and in stores tomorrow, will set you back $1999 for the 1.1 GHz dual-core Intel Core m3 CPU with 256GB of (super-fast) PCI-E flash storage. The next step up is the $2,449 1.2GHz Core m5 model with 512GB of flash storage, while a more powerful 1.3GHz Core m7 model is available as an additional configurable option on top of the Core m5 variant for a further $240. [Apple]