by Jason Snell
Apple’s compromised mobile laptop
Here’s me in 2008:
More of a compromise is the pathway by which users can attach peripherals to the MacBook Air: a single USB 2.0 port. First let’s address that port on its own merits: if you want to attach more than a single USB device to the MacBook Air, you’ll need to invest in a USB 2.0 hub. In a desk-bound configuration, this can actually work quite well. I tested the MacBook Air attached to the USB port of the aforementioned 23-inch Apple Cinema Display, and then on to a Belkin-powered four-port USB 2.0 hub. I managed to attach an external hard drive, an iPod, an iPhone, an Apple keyboard, a Kensington trackball, and the MacBook Air’s own USB Ethernet adapter all at once, without any trouble.
That was the original MacBook Air model. I used the word “compromise” ten times. The more things change, the more they stay the same. As I wrote in January:
In other words, would Apple release a laptop with no dedicated power cable, ditch a bunch of traditional ports, and funnel every bit of power and wired connectivity through a connector that it has never before used, all in the name of creating a thinner and lighter laptop? Are you kidding? Of course it would.