The Macbook Air Turned Four Years Old Today, Everyone Else Just Now Making Ultrabooks
Four years ago Apple introduced the Macbook Air to a fawning public. The devilishly thin build, unibody construction, and speed when paired with a SSD was compelling, but expensive.
Fast forward to the present day, the MBA is faster, just as thin, and priced within the stratosphere. The MBA’s original $1,799 entry price has given way to a $999 11” model complete with 64GB of flash storage and a 1.6 Mghz i5 dual core processor.
When Steve Jobs pulled the MBA out of manila envelope on stage during 2008’s MacWorld keynote speech he put the rest of notebook world on notice. This was the future of laptops and the current popularity of netbooks would soon die by the hand of the MBA and the still unannounced iPad.
The exclusion of a SuperDrive was an early indicator of Apple’s intentions for physical media now fully realized with Mac App Store. Apple completely supplanted physical software distribution. Apple did it to music, it was only a matter of time until they did it to software.
A brief glimpse at CES 2012 headlines shows an overwhelming coverage of “Ultrabooks.” This new class of notebooks sport ultra-thin designs, incredibly fast processors, and a marketing emphasis that they are the future of notebooks.
Huh? How can they be the future, when they’re biggest influence, and biggest competitor is over four years old?
It's difficult to imagine these products getting any thinner, but I wouldn't be surprised if the name Macbook Air takes on an all to literal meaning before all is said and done.