Yesterday at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC 2022), Apple announced new MacBook Air models, featuring a new M2 processor and new chassis design.
The new MacBook Air with M2 is an excellent computer, which will provide good service for years to come. If budget is an issue, or if you upgrade regularly, the old-style MacBook Air with M1 is still available and may be a better choice.
The MacBook Air with M2 starts at $1199. But this is a config that I would not recommend, as it only has 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. Most users should upgrade the memory to at least 16GB and the storage to at least 512GB. Anyone who works with audio, photos or video should get as much storage as you can afford and consider upgrading the RAM to the 24GB maximum. Following this advice, you will have a minimum price of $1699.
And it comes in colors!
They will be available “next month”. At this writing, Apple has not given a more specific availability date. If you are interested in getting one of these, please watch for a pre-order date. I expect these to sell very well and posisbly be in short supply for the first several months.
The M1 MacBook Air is still available, and is an excellent option for most people. It’s entry point is also a configuration that I would not recommend, as it has too little memory and storage for most people (also 8GB/256GB). My recommendation is to move up to the 16GB/512GB option, which means the configuration I recommend is $1399.
In both cases, the entry-level configuration is a fine little machine. But both resale value and useful life of the computer are significantly enhanced by bumping up the options a little. I do think these entry-level configuration could be good for someone who has very limited needs or is getting this as a secondary computer.
Note also that I may have other advice depending on your situation. Apple Silicon is also available in MacBook Pro, Mac mini and Mac Studio models that all have excellent value for people who need them.
I recommend against any Intel-based Macs now, except for those with very specific needs. Those folks know who they are.
The M2 is Apple’s latest processor in the Apple Silicon line. It’s faster and more capable than the M1 processor, while also being very energy efficient. The speed increases include faster bandwidth to memory and dedicated hardware processing for media encode/decode. Because of these improvements, it’s an especially good upgrade for anyone working with video or doing other intensive workloads.
It’s generally expected that over the next years, Apple will introduce more powerful variants of the M2, as they did with M1.
Here is Apple’s announcement for the M2 processor, for those interested in that detail: