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By Jason Snell for Macworld
Back in March I wrote a column for Macworld called “MacBook Air: Why won’t it die?“. I got a lot of angry feedback from people who apparently read the headline and not the article and evisioned me as the executioner of their beloved laptop.
I’m about as far away from that as I could possibly be. I have loved and used the MacBook Air from the time the first one shipped ten years ago. My point back in March was actually that Apple has been trying to kill the MacBook Air for a few years now—ever since the 12-inch MacBook was first released—but has never managed to finish it off.
A whole bunch of features that Apple views as old-tech liabilities—MagSafe charging, USB-A ports, an SD card reader, the new “butterfly” keyboard mechanism, and of course the lack of a Retina display—don’t seem to have fazed MacBook Air buyers. Instead, I keep hearing that the MacBook Air is one of Apple’s best selling computers. Certainly the $999 price tag is a huge reason why, and it’s a price the $1299 MacBook and $1299 13-inch MacBook Pro (without Touch Bar) haven’t been able to approach.
Anyway, Bloomberg reported last week that Apple is readying a low-cost replacement for the MacBook Air, a report that makes a lot more sense than the earlier report that Apple was going to update the Air itself.
So, is this it? Is it the swan song for the MacBook Air? And if so, what will replace it?