Apple plans to announce a redesigned MacBook Air with a 13.3-inch Mini LED display in the middle of 2022, according to a new investor note from reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo seen by 9to5Mac and MacRumors. The prediction is in line with Kuo’s previous reports, but offers a more specific timeframe. It also suggests the new Air will have a slightly smaller display than the 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros that are said to be on the way this year.
Mini LED is a relatively new display technology that’s designed to offer some of the benefits of OLED — such as better contrast levels and improved dynamic range — without the risks of burn-in. It made its Apple debut on this year’s 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Kuo has previously listed around half a dozen Apple devices scheduled to migrate to the new displays, including a 27-inch iMac Pro, 14.1-inch MacBook Pro, 16-inch MacBook Pro, 10.2 iPad, and 7.9-inch iPad Mini. Apple is able to include the more premium displays because of cost-savings associated with using its own silicon, according to Kuo.
Alongside the new display technology, the upcoming MacBook Air will reportedly feature MagSafe charging, a thinner and lighter design, as well as two USB 4 ports. Bloomberg previously reported that the new Air will be powered by a “direct successor” to this year’s M1 processor. The new chip is said to include the same number of CPU cores, running at faster speeds, and an increased number of GPU cores. The current M1 processor is available with seven or eight GPU cores, while the new model will reportedly include nine or 10.
The new MacBook Air is likely to follow revamped MacBook Pros, due to arrive in the third quarter of this year. The laptops will reportedly be available with 14 or 16-inch displays (Mini LED, according to Kuo) with a new, more squared off design. MagSafe charging, HDMI ports, and SD card slots, are also said to be included. The MacBook Pro’s much derided OLED touch bar, could also finally be dropped with these models.