Rumors of White MacBook’s Demise Appear as Supplies Dwindle
Along with the bevy of reports
in the last forty-eight hours that many popular third-party Apple retailers were running extremely low on Apple’s consumer-level laptop, the MacBook, there are some reports
that this supply constraint is not indicative of an upcoming refresh, but instead a planned discontinuation.
An argument can be made that if the entry-level MacBook Air, priced the same as the current white MacBook at $999 US, can match the performance of the current MacBook, then there would be no need for Apple to make both products. It would be pretty safe to assume that if Apple were to only keep one of those products, it would certainly be the MacBook Air, which received a design overhaul only some nine months ago, and many expect new models to appear within the next month, featuring current-generation Intel Core processors.
However, the one glaring difference between the two products, besides the obvious aesthetic differences, is hard drive space. With space at a premium in the MacBook Air, the MacBook Air uses Flash Memory SSDs that feature incredibly fast performance, but limited disk space. Although the top-of-the-line MacBook Air Models allow users to have up to 256 GB of storage (officially, compared to the white MacBook’s 250 GB Hard Drive), the current MacBook Air that retails for $999 only contains a 64 GB Hard Drive. Although there are external expansion options, including the relative certainty of Apple adding a Thunderbolt port to the new model, this is a significant difference. Big enough for me, that I believe Apple should continue to sell the White MacBook along with the MacBook Airs until they can match hard disk space and price point together.
We’ll have to see what occurs when Apple releases their new notebook offerings, possibly near or alongside the release of Apple’s next version of OS X, Lion, which is due to drop sometime in July. I’d be surprised if Apple stops selling a MacBook, but the coming months will certainly tell.