What We Know About The Upcoming 15-Inch MacBook Air: Release Date, Specs, Price & MORE!
Will Apple FINALLY release an affordable large-screen MacBook?
Wondering about the upcoming 15-inch MacBook Air?
For years if Mac lovers wanted a small, portable, versatile laptop, the best option was the MacBook Air. And if you wanted a large-screen, pro-level laptop packed with the latest technology, your best option was the super-powerful MacBook Pro.
But Mac users were left with one big glaring hole in their laptop options. Apple didn’t make a large-screen, affordable laptop. If you wanted a big-screen MacBook your only option was to spend at least $2000 getting a 16-inch MacBook Pro. Or, save a packet and buy a refurbished MacBook Pro like I did.
But if you wanted a more affordable Mac laptop, you only have the option of two screen sizes: 14-inch (MacBook Pro) or 13-inch (MacBook Air).
But god help you if you wanted a 15-inch or larger Mac laptop but didn’t have multiple thousands to drop.
But all that is set to change, at least according to a host of reports from supply chain experts in recent weeks. Apple is now rumored to be working on a 15-inch MacBook Air at this very moment. Here’s what we know about it.
15-inch MacBook Air: Release Date
We first got wind of a 15-inch MacBook Air from a report by Display Supply Chain Consultants (via MacRumors). This report confirmed Apple was working on a 15-inch MacBook Air, which was music to many Mac fans’ ears.
However, while Apple unveiled a new MacBook Air in 2022, its size was 13.6-inches. This new 15-inch model won’t debut until 2023.
Still, at least we know a 15-inch MacBook Air is now coming. As the MacBook Air is a line that is primarily aimed at students, it’s likely Apple could debate the 15-inch MacBook Air sometime during the summer of 2023 before the back-to-school season starts.
Indeed, a recent report suggests Apple will launch the 15-inch MacBook Air in the second quarter of 2023, which runs from March to June. Per MacRumors, display industry analyst Ross Young says the 15-inch MacBook Air will launch in April 2023. Young says the production of the display panels are now underway.
However, given that April 2023 is almost over – and WWDC23 is just about six weeks away, it’s highly likely the new 15-inch MacBook Air will debut at Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference in June.
15-inch MacBook Air: Size
While the device is colloquially referred to as the “15-inch MacBook Air”, the new Apple laptop is rumored to be a little larger than 15-inches. Specifically, insiders are now predicting the 15-inch MacBook Air will have a 15.5-inch screen size.
That would make it one of Apple’s largest laptops ever. The current MacBook Pro tops out at 16-inches. It would also place the “15-inch” MacBook Air right between the 16-inch MacBook Pro and 14-inch MacBook Pro models in terms of size.
15-inch MacBook Air: CPU
It has long been rumored that the new 15-inch MacBook Air will feature the M3 Apple Silicon chipset, which uses a 3nm process. However, Apple has yet to unveil the M3, and there are rumors the chip won’t be ready until the end of 2023.
So if Apple is launching the 15-inch MacBook Air earlier than that, it will likely have the M2 chipset with the M2 Pro chipset as an optional upgrade. Of course, Apple could surprise everyone and debate the M3 chipset sooner than expected.
But in a recent tweet, respected analyst Ming-Chi Kou revealed he expects the 15-inch MacBook Air to come with the M2 chip. However, don’t expect the 15-inch MacBook Air to get the M2 Pro. Instead, Kou believes the 15-inch MacBook Air will be available in two chip options, both M2, but just with a different number of cores. As Koe noted in his tweet: “To reiterate, the upcoming 15″ MacBook Air will feature the M2 series and offer two processor spec options. However, two options are more likely to be M2 with different cores (similar to the M2 13″ MacBook Air).”
This is a bit of a letdown because Apple is widely expected to debut the M3 chip by the end of 2023. The M3 chip is built on a 3nm process – versus the 5nm process of the M2 series. That means the M3 could have much greater power efficiency characteristics and battery life.
15-inch MacBook Air: Name
The next rumor about the 15-inch MacBook Air regards its name. Super analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has previously said on Twitter that the 15-inch MacBook Air “might not be called MacBook Air.”
So what could it be called? Perhaps just the MacBook. This naming convention does make some sense. By 2023, Apple could call its most powerful laptops the MacBook Pro, and its lightest, smallest laptops the MacBook Air. But the 15-inch MacBook Air could fit somewhere between the two devices in design, size, and power and thus get the moniker “MacBook.”
However, in a more recent tweet, Kou said he believes the new 15-inch MacBook Air will now be branded as a 15-inch version of the “MacBook Air.” This makes sense from a branding perspective.
15-inch MacBook Air: Power Adapter
In the earlier tweet, Kuo revealed Apple is planning on using a 30-watt power adapter for the new 15-inch MacBook, the same size currently used on the MacBook Air. As Kuo wrote: “Although a larger display generally consumes more power, the design goal is to use the same 30W power adapter as MacBook Air.”
15-inch MacBook Air: Display Tech
While the 15-inch MacBook will have a size closer to that of the MacBook Pro, it likely won’t support the advanced mini-LED technology of the MacBook Pro at the time. Instead, the 15-inch MacBook will retain an LCD display, reports MacRumors.
However, other analysts say mini-LED is still possible.
15-inch MacBook Air: Cost
So what most people want to know is how much will the new 15-inch MacBook when it debuted in 2023?
There’s no telling right now, but it will likely be somewhere in the $1399 to $1799 range, likely with multiple models at those price points.
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Michael GrothausApple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.
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