Why the Macbook Air design never changes

PC Magazine:

Why would one of the most innovative technology companies in the world be glacial in redesigning one of its most iconic products? Why would it want the MacBook Air to look…dated?

The answer seems pretty simple. The design hasn’t changed because, frankly, it hasn’t needed to.

What changes, if any, would you make to the Air?



  • Nicholas Chan

    liquid metal enclosure.

    • http://www.laugh-eat.com/ kyron

      what does that mean to me as a normal consumer? im not familiar w/ that material so what beneficial value does it add?

      • Nicholas Chan

        liquid metal is stronger than titanium and can be bent like plastic.

  • BGC

    Retina Display.

    • Sigivald

      That’s not a “design” change in this context*, though it’s the obvious and welcome feature change.

      (*Per Jobs, “design is how it works”, so Retina is design at that level, but that wasn’t the context of the article, which was aesthetic design.)

  • frikova

    Design-wise, it only needs the most obvious one: SMALLER BEZEL.

    • http://www.laugh-eat.com/ kyron

      ive seen people posting that recently. i have never found myself contemplating the bezel when looking at the screen and its content (my work). what is the added value of reducing the bezel? shrinking the entire chassis to match?

      • http://www.lazyprogrammers.com Eugene Kim

        When comparing the new iMacs to the older ones with bezels, the appeal is immediate. Like matthewmaurice said above though, structural reasons would definitely be a big obstacle.

  • Fletchergull

    I’d make the bezel of the screen smaller (as non existent as possible), making the MBA itself smaller… I’d have it in two colors, space grey and silver (and why not even gold when (and if) the iPad is released in Gold too)… other than that, I can’t think of anything else…

    • GFYantiapplezealots

      Can you imagine the complaints from scratched space gray and gold Macbook Airs? Just stick with the natural metal.

      • Fletchergull

        The MBA is less likely to be scratched than an iPhone or an iPad since those last two are more used on the move. Yet this didn’t stop Apple from making them in Space Grey (and Gold for the iPhone)… I don’t see why the MBA can’t have the same treatment…

  • Anon Techie

    Smaller Bezel Rounded endges, at least, where I rest my palm.

  • http://www.thegraphicmac.com/ JimD

    Smaller bezel w/larger screen. A 15″ non-retina (for cost reasons) would be ideal for me.

  • matthewmaurice

    RE: the bezel–I’m no materials engineer, but with a display assembly that thin already, you have to wonder if a big part of that bezel is required for structural stability.

    • http://www.yourmaclifeshow.com/ Shawn King

      Agreed. I bet that’s a big reason why it’s as thick as it is.

      • http://kosmatos.com/ Odi Kosmatos

        And you think that’s the end of the line? I doubt that. Human ingenuity will find a way, and Apple can now afford to spend on that.

  • http://frankodwyer.com/blog Frank O’Dwyer

    Cellular Data built in

    • http://www.yourmaclifeshow.com/ Shawn King

      That would be interesting.

    • Sigivald

      I saw a lot of Windows laptops advertising that a few years back, and especially netbooks.

      Then they seem to have stopped.

      (Dell used to have several; now only their tablet seems to, or their own search is broken. Probably the former.

      Lenovo seems to make one or two, still, but they’re bad at telling you that.)

      Is that a [non-niche] selling point, or just something that looks cool on a list and sounds awesome for a few people until they see the data metering costs?

      Makes me wonder if The Market Has Spoken about that…

  • Tim W

    Thinner! It should not be thicker than Samsung’s thinnest laptop.

  • http://mikeintosh.cz/ Michal Žďánský

    The metal bezel. I would prefer a black one that rMBP has.

  • GFYantiapplezealots

    Not much. Retina display and rounded edges. Of course lighter is always better.

  • http://kosmatos.com/ Odi Kosmatos

    “What changes, if any, would you make to the Air?”

    Frankly, I’m surprised you would even ask this question. It may not NEED change, until, of course, someone else’s is faster, thinner, uses better materials, gets less hot, is lighter, has better battery life, higher resolution, the bezel will get smaller, etc.

    Apple doesn’t wait for others to do that, they’ll do it themselves. Look at the iPhone – it will get thinner and faster, the design will change, everything will be tweaked, not just the processor.

    It’s “how Apple rolls.”

  • dr.one

    iPad Screen Tech aka IGZO. iPad DPI 16:10 ratio black bezel fan-less think Dyson tech.

  • George

    Design-wise? Nothing. It’s great the way it is.

  • tylernol

    the bezel blows on the current one, going to black like the rmbp would be a good step.

  • http://geekfun.com/ Erik S.

    Speed holes and tail fins!