I’ve changed my mindset toward some Apple products over the last few years. While I was staunchly anti-Apple as a blanket default back when I wrote this post in mid-2011, I’ve changed my mind a… a little bit. As a part of my job I now support a lot more Apple clients and, to facilitate that, my employer got me a MacBook Air. It’s at the lower end of the spectrum since it’s not my primary machine, but I have to admit that I like it quite a bit. It’s small and light, with a great display (though it’s only 1366 x 768) and amazing battery life. When I’m at conferences, I’m reaching for the Air as opposed to my hulking Windows laptop that weighs far more with worse battery life and an equally shitty screen resolution.
That being said, I still can’t get behind any of Apple’s mobile products; iOS is just heinous to me. It’s far more limited when compared to Android, though I could see arguments being made for that as both a pro and a con. Likewise, I have a difficult time supporting the company itself and would be loathe to spend my own hard-earned cash on them. They aren’t quite at the level of being as evil as your average State-side ISP, but they’re not far away.
So the moral of the story is that their laptops are really the only Apple product that I enjoy. I make a point of this to provide some context with my shock at just how terrible the newly announced MacBook is. I’m literally awestruck that Apple has the gall to charge a starting price of $1299 USD.
Announced yesterday, the device has a base configuration with the following specs. Again, keep in mind that this will run you $1299.
- 1.1 GHz dual core Intel Core M processor (!!!)
- 256 GB SSD
- 8 GB RAM
The RAM seems solid. 256 GB of solid state storage seems a bit low to me for something as expensive as this. And a 1.1 GHz dual core processor is, honestly, just downright embarrassing. You can practically start comparing that to the Intel processor in my Toshiba Chromebook 2. That’s just nuts. To make matters worse, you barely get much improvement if you decide to bump things up to the $1599 configuration. Your SSD hits a ceiling of 512 GB and you now get a 1.2 GHz Intel Core M. Now it’s worth mentioning that these two Core M models have the ability to burst up to 2.4 and 2.6 GHz respectively, but that’s still a far cry from even being passable on such an expensive device. And, of course, they’re still dual core procs.
The one thing that it has going for it is a 2304 x 1440 screen resolution, which is pretty epic. But I guess you’ll be spending a lot of time admiring that screen to distract yourself from how you can’t plug anything into it. You get one (!) USB-C port. You have to use that for power… and peripherals… and any displays. You’re going to spend another $100 on adapters alone.
If you want a good look at the device, MKBHD had a really good YouTube video from the event. One thing that I found particularly accurate from the video was the following comment he made:
“People won’t buy this laptop for the power. They’ll buy it for for how pretty it looks.”
It’s hard to argue with this statement. It’s a mind-blowingly thin device that’ll undoubtedly turn some heads if you use it in public. Beyond that, it’s exceedingly overpriced for the hardware, and pretty much anything else will give you more bang for your buck. I just can’t see how anyone would think purchasing this device is a good idea.