Apple is becoming better known for tooting it’s own horn, especially where price point/performance improvements are concerned. Yet, the recent drop of $500 off the price of the high-end MacBook Air ($400 less for the SSD drive and $100 for the 1.8GHz CPU) breaks with that pattern; no press releases or fanfare of any sort. Why?
Popular speculation is that a newer, faster, better Air may be just around the corner.
Lack of attention to the price drop may indicate a wish on Apple’s part to sell off the older models faster, if not in larger volume….then perhaps in order to clear space for the new MacBook Air.
Such a price drop could facilitate an early clear out of the old models to make room for the new models in time to avoid an even bigger price drop down the road.
Apple would be wise to hedge it’s bet in such a manner with consumers spending more cautiously than ever.
There are certain weaknesses that could stand to be fortified with a new model that would be music to the ears of any Apple user in the market for a new laptop.
With a few relatively minor changes, the MacBook Air could far better serve as the only computer most users will need; as virtually everyone, particularly the spec-savvy power users who are the backbone of Rumors readership, knows…..the current Air displays several crucial weaknesses in value and performance — as well as functionality, largely arising from its lack of Firewire and single USB2 port/bus — which make it a poor desktop replacement candidate compared with even the most basic 13.3-inch Macbook model, which costs a whole lot less than any model of Air.
Given the substantial advancements being made by Intel with their 45-nanometer mobile processors this year, it seems clear that the awkward timing of the original Air’s introduction just as the 45nm revolution was beginning — well before the Air could be spec’d with such processors and still meet cost or availability requirements set by Apple — was its greatest hurdle.
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