We were impressed with the 1.1GHz MacBook Air Apple introduced in March 2020, and then Apple blew that out of the water with the M1 MacBook Air in November 2020. But November 2020 is now more than a year ago so thoughts are turning to the next MacBook Air, what we can expect and when it will arrive.

The good news is that apparently there is a new-look MacBook Air in the works, and Apple is planing a colourful redesign to boot.

According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman (who seems to have access to some pretty good sources), Apple is developing a “thinner and lighter version of the MacBook Air“. This new MacBook Air will apparently no longer have the tapered design it is famous for. In fact, it may not even be called the MacBook Air: Apple could bring back the MacBook.

Plus a leak from Jon Prosser suggests that this new Mac laptop will come in a variety of colours – just like the 24in iMac. Prosser got some images mocked up of what that might look like, and six months after these images first appeared he has had them updated to incorporate the notch and MagSafe ports seen on the 2021 14in MacBook Pro. We have more on the new design for the MacBook Air below.

Another rumour indicates that Apple might even launch two different sizes of MacBook Air – a new 15in model could be coming in 2023. More on that rumour below.


Goodbye, old friend. Hello, new one.

In this article we’ll investigate what’s in store for the new MacBook Air. We’ll evaluate when in 2022 a new MacBook Air will launch, if it will have an M2 chip, and we’ll take a look at the anticipated features and improvements.

It’s worth noting that these rumours could point to a new MacBook Air or the reincarnation of the MacBook. Prosser notes that the information he has received from his source suggests that this is not a MacBook Pro. We also have a roundup of rumours about the 2022 MacBook Pro.

Release date

We expect the new MacBook Air to launch in autumn 2022. An earlier appearance at WWDC in June is possible, but at this point we’d count it as a long shot.

There were suggestions early in 2021 that we could actually see a new MacBook Air that year! Obviously that didn’t transpire, but it does indicate that this isn’t a new project at Apple.

There was some expectation that the new Air would appear at the Apple Event on 8 March 2022 after a February 2022 filing with the EEC (Eurasian Economic Commission) revealed that Apple was working on three new Macs, of which one was listed as a portable. Two desktop Macs did launch at the spring event – the M1 Max Mac Studio and the M1 Ultra Mac Studio. The Studio Display also launched, which could theoretically have been the third product seen in the database.

A new MacBook Air before the end of June still remains possible, though. Twitter account Dylandkt wrote in July 2021 that he believed that a new MacBook Air with M2 chip will arrive in the first half of 2022.

Note that by January 2022 Dylan had changed his prediction to the second half of 2022 though:

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has been saying for some time that Apple will launch a new, more “affordable” ‌MacBook Air‌ in 2022. He reiterated this 2022 launch prediction in a note to investors back in March 2021. At that time he suggested that Apple would launch a new model of MacBook Air with mini-LED in 2022 and that it would be the first entry-level Mac to feature mini-LED display technology.

Kuo, like other pundits, no longer thinks the new Air will arrive in the first half of 2022. In September 2021 Kuo said he expects Apple to start mass production of the redesigned MacBook Air in the late second or early third quarter of 2022. Read: Redesigned MacBook Air to begin production next summer.

Kuo then tweeted in March 2022 that he predicts production of the new MacBook Air will start in late 2Q22 or 3Q22 – so a October or November launch looks most likely.

You’ll notice that Kuo also suggests that the new MacBook Air will include an M1 chip, contrary to other reports that suggest the M2 will make an appearance in the new MacBook Air. We’ll discuss the processor in more detail below.

Luckily the current model is still an excellent purchase. If you don’t want to wait to buy a new MacBook Air you can find the best deals right now here: Best MacBook Air deals.


According to the Bloomberg report mentioned above, this new laptop will be positioned as a higher-end version of the current MacBook Air with the current models remaining on sale. In fact, rather than being a MacBook Air, this new model could just be known as a MacBook.

The current MacBook Air is priced as follows.

  • M1 MacBook Air, 8-Core CPU, 7-Core GPU, 256GB SSD £999/$999
  • M1 MacBook Air, 8-Core CPU, 8-Core GPU, 512GB SSD £1,249/$1,249

Should the new model come in at the top of the range we would expect Apple to drop the price of the current models, which could mean that the entry-level MacBook Air sees a price drop to £849/$899 while the new model, with its new design, comes in at £1,349/$1,399.

The lower starting price complements Kuo’s suggestion that the MacBook Air will see a price drop. It’s just not clear if the price drop will be on an older model, rather than an update.

MacBook Air or MacBook?

This new colourful MacBook variant could be a replacement for the 13in MacBook Pro as well as a successor to the MacBook Air.

The range is a little complicated currently, with two MacBook Air, two 13in MacBook Pro and then the two 14in MacBook Pro and three 16in MacBook Pro. The 13in MacBook Pro are great, but should they be classed with the 14in and 16in Models that are truly pro machines?

Perhaps it is time for Apple to revive the singular MacBook name and launch a model that sits in the middle. Or maybe the MacBook Air, which launched in 2008, will be no more and the MacBook, discontinued in 2019 will return.


Jon Prosser’s source – who just happens to be the same person who revealed that Apple was going to launch iMacs in different colours back in 2021 – has indicated that new MacBook Air in a variety of colours, and with an all new design, is coming. Read: A colourful MacBook launch is coming.

Back in May 2021 Prosser had RendersbyIan (Ian Zelbo) create images based on the information his source provided about the new MacBook Air. He claimed that they had quite a lot of information to work with.

In October 2021 Prosser and Zelbo returned to those render to add two new features based on the launch of the 2021 MacBook Pro and “recent reports”, as he put it in the FrontPageTech report.

There’s now an image showing a notch, see: What a MacBook Air could look like with a notch.

MacBook Air with Notch

MacBook Air with Notch

If there is a notch at the top of the screen to accommodate the webcam, and the frame is white, then we can expect the notch to be white too.

Prosser and Zelbo have also creted an image showing how a MagSafe port might look: 

MagSafe on MacBook Air

MagSafe on MacBook Air

The original May 2021 renders were based on information Prosser was able to obtain at that time, for example that the bezels and keys on the keyboard are white, for example.

Prosser also revealed that the tapered look that the MacBook Air is famed for will be no more. Instead it will have a flat design and the case will be only fractionally thicker than a USB-C socket, of which Prosser indicated there are two.

New MacBook Air blue

New MacBook Air blue

As for colours, Prosser claimed that there will be blue and green options and he suggests that they will be “very close, if not identical” to the 24in iMac.

The 24in iMac comes in seven different colours: blue, green, pink, silver, yellow, orange and purple.

MacBook Air colours

MacBook Air colours

Read more about the information used by Prosser to create the images here: First look at colourful MacBook Air.

It’s not only Prosser who has information about the new MacBook Air. Both analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman expect the company to launch colourful MacBook Air models in 2022.

In an August 2021 note to investors Kuo claims that Apple plans to give customers more colour choices with the new MacBook Air. More here: Redesigned, colourful MacBook Air on way, says analyst.


In a Bloomberg article from January 2021 Mark Gurman described how the upcoming MacBook Air will be thinner and lighter while maintaining the current 13in screen size. In order to achieve this Apple will reduce the size of the bezels around the screen.

Right now the dimensions of the MacBook Air are 30.41cm x 21.24cm x 0.41-1.61cm.

The closest we can get to a prediction of how much smaller the MacBook Air could be while maintaining the same screen size is to look at the 16in MacBook Pro compared to the 15in model. When Apple updated the design of its larger MacBook Pro it increased the size of the screen partly by reducing the bezel size and partly by increasing the size of the Mac itself.

But this time the plan appears to be to keep the screen size the same while shaving a little off the edges. On that basis we’d expect Apple to shave off at least a centimeter from the over all dimensions. So we could be looking at around 29.5cm x 20cm.

There’s once thing that could stop the laptop getting any smaller. The optimum keyboard size. Apple’s Magic Keyboard is 27.9cm wide so it’s unlikely that the new MacBook Air would be any smaller than that – reducing the size further would mean that the keys were too close together.

Other clues come from the past: back in 2016 Apple discontinued the 11in MacBook Air. You might be thinking that would have been tiny, but the measurements were 30cm x 19.2cm, which isn’t much smaller than the current dimensions.

The other dimension that could change is how narrow the MacBook Air is. There are rumours that the classic wedge shape will be eliminated in favour of adding more ports, although it’s unlikely we’ll gain HDMI or a built-in card reader.

New 15in MacBook Air

According to the Bloomberg report from January 2021 mentioned above, Apple actually considered making a 15in version of the MacBook Air, but scrapped that idea.

However, just over a year later it seems that the 15in MacBook Air could be in the works at Apple. According to the Quarterly Advanced IT Display Shipment and Technology Report from Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC), who’s CEO is analyst Ross Young, Apple will introduce a 15in MacBook Air in 2023.

This won’t be the first time Apple has sold a 15in MacBook of course, the 15in MacBook Pro was sold until 2019 when Apple introduced the 16in model in a not much larger case. Nor is it the first time Apple has sold two sizes of MacBook Air – previously there was a smaller 11in model (the 13in model is now almost as small as the 11in model was).

Young told 9to5Mac that the new 15in model will be a variant of the MacBook Air that will not replace the current model, but complement it.

Young’s predictions regarding displays have been reasonably accurate in recent years (although his expectations that Apple would update the 27in iMac turned out to be based on information relating to the 27in Studio Display.)

Apple is still expected to launch a redesigned MacBook Air with a slightly larger screen and an M2 chip later in 2022, the new 15in size just won’t be introduced until the following year.


It is likely that we will see the same kind of mini-LED screen found in the new MacBook Pro models in the MacBook Air in 2022.

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the first MacBook Air with a mini-LED screen will launch in the middle of 2022. He outlined his expectations for this in notes to investors in August and July 2021.

Mini-LED is a screen backlighting tech that provides better colour reproduction, blacker blacks, higher contrast and greater dynamic range. The technology is already used for the iPad Pro and is expected to come to the MacBook Pro in 2021.

Apple is expected to move much of its Mac (and iPad) range to mini-LED displays, although there have been delays due to supply constraints. Mini-LED displays bring the following improvements:

  • Deeper and darker blacks
  • Brighter, richer colours
  • Better contrast
  • Without the burn-in issues of OLED
  • More power efficient
  • Allowing for thinner and lighter products

One other screen-related change that some people would love to see is a touch screen Mac. Especially now that you can run iOS apps on the Mac. Will there ever be a touch screen Mac?

Notch or not?

We’ve already shared Prosser’s renders of what the MacBook Air will look like with a notch above, but will the MacBook Air really have a notch like the 2021 MacBook Pro does?

Apple could make the screen bigger without adjusting the size of the MacBook Air by incorporating a notch, as it has with the MacBook Pro. But does Apple need to increase the screen size, or reduce the overall size of the MacBook Air? We don’t think it really does.

But, now that we have a notch – well really the camera housing – overlapping the screen of the MacBook Pro, it certainly looks like the next version of the Air will gain a notch to the top of its screen.

The inclusion of the notch has been surmised by Chinese leaker Ty98 who, according to a Macrumors report in October 2021, believes that the new ‌MacBook Air‌ will incorporate the notch seen on the MacBook Pro. Read: More evidence for MacBook Air redesign.

MacBook Air with notch

MacBook Air with notch

For those complaining about the notch on the MacBook Pro, Apple’s Shruti Haldea (Product Line Manager, Pro Mac) has this to say: the notch is a “really smart way to give you more space for your content” because the menu bar has moved up into new space on either side of the notch while the rest of the screen has the same 16:10 aspect ratio as before.

“What we’ve done is we’ve actually made the display taller,” she points out. More here: Apple exec defends MacBook Pro’s screen notch.


We also hope that Apple adds a better webcam. The current 720p FaceTime camera is terrible, we’d hope for a HD (1080p) webcam as seen in the iMac and the 2021 MacBook Pro models. To be honest if Apple doesn’t do this it would be a travesty! 

Even better if it also offers Face ID. Read about Face ID on the Mac?


If this new MacBook Air is to be thinner and lighter than currently what does this mean for the components on the inside?

Right now the Air can be limited by the fact that it lacks space for cooling and heat dissipation – the current model doesn’t even have a fan. Without a means of cooling itself Apple has to stop the MacBook Air from getting too hot – which generally means slowing it down when the going gets tough.

With that in mind we shouldn’t expect the upcoming MacBook Air to be much more powerful than it is currently, and certainly not as powerful as the MacBook Pro, but we can expect some improvements.

Processor & Graphics

As mentioned above, Twitter account Dylandkt believes that the new MacBook Air will feature an M2 chip. Other Apple pundits expect the same with the exception of Ming Chi Kuo, who wrote in a tweet on 9 March that the processor in the new MacBook Air will be an M1 (see tweet above).

The inclusion of an M1 chip in a new MacBook Air two years after the first M1 MacBook Pro launched would be very surprising. While the new design may be an incentive to purchasers, the M1 chip will be looking old by then.

However, it is possible that Apple’s schedule for chip developments will be a lot longer than what we were used to with Intel. Rather than the yearly or 18 monthly updates we are used to, perhaps we could be waiting a lot longer for the next generation. If the M2 isn’t ready in 2022 we would expect to see the next generation in 2023, but, as Macworld’s Michael Simon suggests, perhaps the M2 MacBook Air won’t arrive until 2024.

Hopefully we won’t have to wait that long for the M2 though. There are plenty of reports suggesting that the M2 could be ready later in 2022.

The new chip (apparently it’s codenamed Staten) is thought to have the same number of processor cores as its predecessor, the M1, but will feature more graphics cores: there are suggestions that there could be up to 10 such cores instead of 8 graphics cores. We can expect some leaps in performance for the M2 compared to the M1. 

Dylandkt indicated that the new MacBook Air will not feature the M1X (which we now know to be called the M1 Pro and M1 Max) will be reserved for pro devices.

The graphics prowess of the M1 Pro and M1 Max would certainly be overkill for a consumer focused Mac laptop like the MacBook Air. While the M1 Pro and M1 Max have excellent energy management they would definitely be unsuitable for a Mac that lacks fans, as the MacBook Air does.

Read about the M1 Pro and M1 Max.


The memory is thought to be likely to remain at a maximum of 16GB. This is because an adaptation of the powerful chips of the MacBook Pro that support more RAM will not be possible due to the excessive power consumption and the fact that the MacBook Air lacks a fan.


Should Apple abandon the classic tapered ‘wedge’ shape in favour of a new uniform shape for the Air it could mean there’s room for more ports. However, it doesn’t mean that the Air will be thicker than it is currently: The housing itself could become thinner: renders have shown how a MacBook Air could look if it was just thick enough to feature a normal 3.5 mm jack for headphones

The MagSafe charging port has made a return to the MacBook Pro, so it may also return to the MacBook Air. However, not all MacBook Pro owners have been happy with MagSafe 3. Some have complained that the magnetic connection is too strong and doesn’t detach as easily as the previous generation did. It seems that MagSafe is no longer going to stop your Mac laptop crashing to the floor if someone trips on the cable.

It is unlikely that we will see the return of the SD card slot, although the addition of an HDMI port would allow users to plug in more screens than is currently possible with the MacBook Air. Read: How to connect two or more external displays to M1 Macs.