Apple MacBook Air (2019) review

Apple MacBook Air (2019) review

Our Verdict

A stable entry with an very neutral appropriate new conceal, however the 2019 MacBook Air’s twin-core processor is starting up to feel underpowered. Even with a lower entry ticket, it’s mild very costly with a mild-weight starting up specification and dear upgrades.


  • Pleasing compose
  • Screen is broad
  • Unprecedented battery existence
  • Unique lower ticket


  • Underpowered
  • Lack of storage set apart
  • Expensive to give a utilize to
  • Handiest two Thunderbolt 3 ports
  • Expensive

The brand new MacBook Air (2019) is right here after a tumultuous few years for Apple’s thin and gentle-weight MacBook. The MacBook Air venerable to be essentially the most affordable skill to fetch a MacBook, however then it gave the impression to plunge out of desire as Apple repositioned the12-drag MacBookas both the thinnest and most price-efficient of its laptops.

Alternatively, in a rather stunning circulate, Apple hasditched the 12-drag MacBook linewhile releasing a refreshed MacBook Air for 2019.

So, with the MacBook Air again in what many of us delight in in thoughts its rightful set apart as essentially the most affordable Apple pc, will this year’s mannequin be in a set apart to enlighten Apple’s vaunted compose and create quality to a brand new viewers who are lengthen by the MacBook Professional’s excessive ticket?

MacBook Air 2019

Apple stunned us all with a brand new MacBook Air for 2019.

(Image credit: Future)

Spec sheet

(Image credit: Apple)

Here is the MacBook Air (2019) configuration sent to TechRadar for review:

CPU:1.6GHz Intel Core i5-8210Y (twin-core, 4 threads, 4MB cache, as a lot as 3.6GHz)
Graphics:Intel UHD Graphics 617
RAM:8GB (2,133MHz LPDDR3)
Screen:13.3-drag, 2,560 x 1,600 Retina Lawful Tone show (backlit LED, IPS)
Storage:256GB PCIe SSD
Ports:2x Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C), 3.5mm headphone jack
Connectivity:802.11ac Wi-F, Bluetooth 4.2
Digicam:720p FaceTime HD webcam
Weight:2.75 kilos (1.25kg)
Size:11.97 x 8.36 x 0.61 inches (30.41 x 21.24 x 1.56cm; W x D x H)

Mark and availability

Apple’s announcement of a brand new MacBook Air (2019) became once shiny for a sequence of reasons. Initially, we hadn’t essentially been anticipating a refresh, however Apple also announced that the entry-level MacBook Air (2019) became once getting a ticket lower to $1,099 (£1,099, AU$1,699).

Whereas that’s mild removed from funds territory, it makes the MacBook Air more affordable than ever, and it’s continuously nice to seem prices going down with updates – as hostile to up.

For comparison’s sake, the MacBook Air (2018) began at $1,199 (£1,199, AU$1,849) when it launched.

The nasty mannequin of the MacBook Air (2019) comes with a 1.6GHz twin-core eighth-generation Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost as a lot as 3.6GHz, 8GB of LPDDR3 RAM, 128GB storage and Intel UHD Graphics 617.

There’s also a mannequin with the identical specs, however with twice the storage at 256GB, which payments $1,299 (£1,299, AU$1,999).

That usually skill you’re getting 128GB more for $200/£200/AU$300, which is a pleasant dear give a utilize to. It’s a itsy-bitsy bit frustrating that Apple has kept that gargantuan jump in ticket for a rather small quantity of extra storage set apart. Meanwhile, it’s seemingly you’ll perchance double youriPhone XRstorage for one other $50/£50.

It makes way more financial sense to fetch the 128GB version, after which both make investments in an exterior exhausting power (strive our preserve shut of thesimplest exterior exhausting drives for Macsfor solutions), or explain cloud storage delight in iCloud to build your files.

As is unfortunately the case with Apple’s hardware, there’s no easy skill to begin up the MacBook Air your self and presents a utilize to the SSD.

So, while we’re happy to seem the rate plunge for the MacBook Air, shipping a top price – and while the Air is largely the most price-efficient MacBook, at this ticket it’s mild top price – pc with moral 128GB of storage appears to be like pleasing imply in 2019 – especially when Apple then prices so mighty for a storage give a utilize to.

One in every of the ideal threats to the MacBook Air (2019) is that Windows laptops within the meanwhile are thinner and more extremely efficient than ever. Apple now no longer has the monopoly on thin and gentle-weight laptops, and there are Windows-based entirely mostlyUltrabooksthat supply identical (or better) specs for the identical ticket. And, it’s seemingly you’ll perchance guarantee that they all delight in bigger exhausting drives than 128GB. To illustrate, theHP Spectre x360 (2019)is at some level of the identical ticket and supplies 256GB storage and a mighty sooner processor.

The lower entry ticket of the MacBook Air (2019) is effectively welcome within the occasion you’re plan on shopping a MacBook, however some of Apple’s much less appealing habits are mild evident, and with elevated competition from Windows laptops, there are seriously better price alternatives accessible.

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As with the newMacBook Professional (2019), Apple has no longer modified the out of doors compose of the MacBook Air (2019) from final year’s mannequin.

Substantial news within the occasion you delight in the compose of the MacBook Air, however tainted news within the occasion you were hoping for a more broad substitute.

So, you fetch a thin pc with dimensions of 11.97 x 8.36 x 0.61 inches (30.41 x 21.24 x 1.56cm) and a weight of 2.75 kilos (1.25kg). It remains an impressively lightweight pc, and while it’s no longer as thoughts-blowingly gentle as laptops delight in theAcer Swift 7, the Apple MacBook Air (2019) is a instrument it’s seemingly you’ll perchance with out divulge lift around in a rep or backpack.

It also feels grand and stable, so although it’s thin, you’re no longer panicked about it getting zigzag or dented. That is due to the MacBook Air being constructed out of an aluminum alloy that appears to be like huge and feels sturdy. By conserving the identical compose as final year’s mannequin, the new MacBook Air (2019) is but again made out of 100% recycled aluminum – which implies that no new metal has been mined to construct this instrument.

That’s a gargantuan selling level for anyone excited regarding the ambiance, and something we commend Apple for.

Alternatively, by conserving the identical compose, it skill this year’s mannequin mild functions substances we weren’t too thinking about with 2018’s edition.

MacBook Air 2019

There are two Thunderbolt 3 ports on the left.

(Image credit: Future)

The reality that the MacBook Air ideal comes with two Thunderbolt 3 ports is maddening however understandable, concerned regarding the svelte compose of the pc. Alternatively, Apple’s resolution to set apart both ports on the left hand aspect baffled and aggravated us in 2018 – and it continues to originate so in 2019.

If one port had been positioned on all facets, it would delight in given other folks a itsy-bitsy bit more flexibility when charging the MacBook Air. As an quite loads of, you always must take a seat in a certain set apart with the flexibility adapter plugged into the left of the pc.

It also makes the MacBook Air feel a itsy-bitsy bit cluttered – and unbalanced – within the occasion you toddle in two (or more within the occasion it’s seemingly it’s good to an adapter) gadgets into the Thunderbolt 3 ports.

One set apart the set apart Apple has made a substitute – and a welcome one at that – is with the keyboard. The brand new MacBook Air (2019) now makes explain of the improved third-generation Butterfly keyboard that came with this year’s MacBook Professionals.

Earlier versions of the MacBook keyboards using older Butterfly switches were at possibility of problems akin to sticky and unresponsive keys. Apple has taken quite loads of flack for this – unsurprisingly, as when you’re spending quite loads of cash on a pc, you’d question the keyboard to work.

The controversy has been a stain on Apple’s on the full impeccable reputation for quality adjust and reliability. The as a lot as this level keyboard is geared toward making it much less probably for there to be elements – alternatively some other folks will inevitably reflect that this doesn’t slouch far ample. When spending this form of cash, ‘much less at possibility of slouch grisly’ won’t lower it. 

Whereas Apple’sKeyboard Service Program, which would per chance replace a deplorable keyboard freed from price, extends to this year’s MacBook Air, it also suggests that the mission is mild chronic. At this level, we hope that the next MacBook Air (and other MacBook objects) ditch the clearly problematic Butterfly swap altogether.

MacBook Air 2019

Contact ID is but again incorporated.

(Image credit: Future)

As with the earlier version, Contact ID is also incorporated, permitting you to log into the MacBook Air along with your fingerprint (or pay for stuff using Apple Pay). The elevated Pressure Contact trackpad is also repeat, and as with final year’s mannequin it feels shiny to make explain of and works effectively.

Total, the MacBook Air (2019)’s compose doesn’t substitute mighty, which in many methods is a moral element – however it completely’s also disappointing as effectively. Expectantly the next version of the MacBook Air will strive something as modern as the distinctive MacBook Air became once.

MacBook Air 2019

The Lawful Tone feature is nice, however no longer necessary.

(Image credit: Future)

Lawful Tone conceal

Probably essentially the most great substitute with the MacBook Air (2019) is that the conceal now supports Apple’s Lawful Tone skills.

This automatically adjusts the color temperature – most noticeably whites – shown on the conceal counting on the ambient gentle you’re using the MacBook Air in. It will delight in a shiny attain (when you first begin the MacBook Air (2019) it’s seemingly you’ll perchance toggle the environment on and off to seem the adaptation it makes), and while this surroundings would per chance well also merely no longer be for everybody, we stumbled on it did a pleasant job of constructing colors look more natural.

Lawful Tone has been incorporated in MacBook Professionals for a while now, and we’ve on the full knowing that wasn’t continuously the ideal fit – as MacBook Professionals are on the full venerable by photographers, video editors and digital creatives who require gorgeous colors – something that Lawful Tone messes with. Alternatively, with the MacBook Air, which is venerable as a more informal pc the set apart color accuracy isn’t as necessary, it makes way more sense.

It’s a pleasant feature, however doubtlessly no longer one which would per chance perchance plan off you to must ditch your 2018 mannequin for this year’s.

In diversified locations, the conceal remains the identical – so a 13.3-drag Retina show with 2,560 x 1,600 resolution that supplies interesting and interesting colors. Closing year’s mannequin presented impressively thin bezels at some level of the show, permitting the conceal to span nearly the full width of the MacBook Air. The conceal has lengthy been a number of the ideal functions of the MacBook Air, so we’re happy that – Lawful Tone apart – Apple hasn’t messed with the a hit formula right here.

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