MacBook Air (2020) is the Apple laptop most folks should buy

Some people love Windows, while others prefer Mac. There are even some wacky folks (such as yours truly) that enjoy using Linux. Hey, you should use whatever makes you happy. Believe it or not, macOS is quite good -- it is a joy to use and absolutely beautiful. Of course, the big problem with Apple computers -- other than their notoriously unreliable keyboards, lately -- is they are wildly expensive. And so, consumers that desire owning a Mac are often unable to realize that dream. True, there is the affordable Mac mini, but it hasn't received a meaningful update since 2018. The base model mini is woefully under-powered too.

Well, Apple has finally done something right with the MacBook line. You see, the company has released the all-new MacBook Air (2020) and it seems to be rather impressive. Long gone is the much-maligned butterfly keyboard, as this new Mac uses traditional scissor switches for the keys -- the same as the 16-inch MacBook Pro. In other words, the keyboard should prove to be more reliable and durable. Best of all, the price starts at a mere $999 ($899 with an education discount -- wink, wink), making it the new "Everyman's Mac." That price gets you an impossibly thin laptop with an enormous trackpad, T2 Security Chip, Touch ID, Thunderbolt 3, more storage capacity (NVMe SSD starting at 256GB), speedy 3733MHz LPDDR4X RAM, and of course, Apple's legendary Retina display.

"Offering quad-core processors for the first time, MacBook Air now delivers even more speed across everyday activities, from organizing photos and creating presentations to editing videos. Featuring the latest 10th-generation Intel Core processors up to 1.2GHz quad-core Core i7 with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.8GHz, MacBook Air delivers up to two times faster performance when compared to the previous generation. And with Intel Iris Plus Graphics, MacBook Air now delivers up to 80 percent faster graphics performance, so graphics-intensive activities like playing games and editing video are faster than ever," says Apple.

The iPhone-maker also says, "MacBook Air now features the new Magic Keyboard, first introduced on the 16-inch MacBook Pro. A redesigned scissor mechanism delivers 1mm of key travel for a comfortable and stable key feel, while the new inverted-'T' arrangement for the arrow keys makes them easier to find without looking down. MacBook Air features a stunning unibody wedge design made from 100 percent recycled aluminum and comes in three finishes -- gold, silver and space gray. The 13-inch Retina display delivers over 4 million pixels and millions of colors, so whether customers are reading an email, enjoying a movie or editing their photos, text is razor sharp and images are more true to life."

Apple shares more features and benefits below.

  • A three-mic array for more clear voice capture for FaceTime calls with friends and family.
  • The industry-best Force Touch trackpad for precise cursor control and multi-touch navigation.
  • Thunderbolt 3 ports for data transfer, charging and video output in a single connector.
  • Support for up to a 6K external display, a first for MacBook Air.
  • Advanced stereo speakers for immersive, wide stereo sound for activities like watching Apple TV+ content or playing games in Apple Arcade.

Tom Boger, Apple's senior director of Mac and iPad Product Marketing, provides the following statement.

From students and consumers buying their first computer to customers looking to upgrade, everyone loves the Mac, and they especially love MacBook Air. Today we’re giving it a huge update, with two times faster performance, the new Magic Keyboard, double the storage, a new lower price of $999 and an even lower price of $899 for education. With its stunning, thin and light design, brilliant Retina display, all-day battery life and the power and ease-of-use of macOS, MacBook Air is the world’s best consumer notebook.

ALSO READ: Apple unveils iPad Pro with trackpad support, signaling eventual death of Mac

So, does that $999 starting price get you a MacBook Air with top specifications? No, of course not. What you do get, however, is a 1.1GHz dual-core 10th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. That is actually very good for average home users, and I probably wouldn't suggest any upgrades for most folks. The fact that the base model is so good is actually quite rare for Apple computers, and I truly thank the company for that. If you do want better specs, you can pay more for an i5 or i7 quad-core processor, 16GB of RAM, and up to 2TB of storage.

If you want your own 2020 MacBook Air, you can order it here immediately. You have your choice of three colors -- silver, space gray, and gold. All three look nice, but the gold is undoubtedly the most stunning of the three.

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