I’m due for a new Apple laptop, and I’ve decided that Christmas will be a good time to buy one. I have a late 2010 13″ MacBook Air which I use to write these posts and for just about everything else that one does with a computer, except for reading the news (I do that on an iPad 2) or books (I do that on Kindle).
When Apple announced that Haswell chips resulted in 12 hours of battery life, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a new MacBook Air. I almost got one right after the Haswell update but I couldn’t make up my mind on whether I wanted an 11-inch or a 13-inch Air, so I took my time (months, actually) to decide. Since I spend most of my day on the computer, the 13″ finally won the argument. Bigger is definitely better the longer you are on it. By the way, that was not intended as a sexual innuendo, at all.
But as soon as I decided for the 13″ Air, Apple releases a new MacBook Pro Retina which is thinner and lighter than before (only about half a pound heavier than the Air) with a 9-hour battery life (again due to Haswell). Oh, and the price has been lowered too.
Suddenly, I don’t know what to do. Depending on whether I leave the Air at 4 GB of RAM or go to 8 GB, I’m at $100 to $200 less than the Pro Retina, respectively. The savings are not important enough to convince me to get the Air. In other words, for just $100 to $200 more I would have an amazing display which is not only gorgeous to look at but also better for the eyes.
The difference of 3 hours in battery life is also not a factor. For me, it usually becomes one when I go on long trips, about twice a year. But, at those times, I can manage to fill the long flights with a combination of laptop, iPad and Kindle.
So that leaves the weight difference. Yes, believe it or not, it’s that half pound that is making me hesitate. Although it doesn’t sound like a lot, it is. Gottabemobile explains that half a pound is the equivalent of 40 quarters. Have you ever had 40 quarters in your bag? That’s heavy, especially if you’re a woman already carrying half of your house in your handbag. Suddenly, deciding whether to add that extra half pound becomes a weighty decision.
So I can’t decide, and I don’t want to go in to an Apple store to weigh the laptops because I’m not ready to make a decision yet. One day I’m convinced that I’ll be buying the Macbook Pro Retina, the next day I think that it will be the Air. Reading several articles comparing the two laptops’ tech specs is not helping. They usually end up advising readers to get the laptop that fits better with their lifestyles. Well, my lifestyle could use both a gorgeous display and less weight.
Now, why didn’t Apple either make the Pro Retina even lighter or put Retina in the Air? Apparently it will, in 2014. Rumor has it that Apple will launch a 12-inch Macbook Pro Retina Air, thinner and lighter than the current Air, in the second or third quarter of 2014.
So, do I wait? Can I wait? It could mean a whole year! If I don’t, what will I decide? Either way it’s not looking good. Since, on average, I buy a new laptop every 3 to 4 years, I will either be stuck with a gorgeous display with more weight or an inferior display with less weight, all that time. In the meantime, thinner-lighter-gorgeous-display laptops will be popping up all around me. Ok, I’ll think about this some more.
The good news is that I’ve finally decided to buy a new iPad Air in February for my birthday (the black one because it’s more elegant). Yes, definitely the Air, not the mini. After all, the iPhone 6 is coming out with a bigger screen, and since I still have a 4S that I wish would be thinner and wider, it will definitely be time for me to get a new phone. It’s possible that the iPhone 6 will come in two sizes, which means I will have to decide which one to get. But, first things first.
MacBook Pro Retina or MacBook Air? Let me know what you think, preferably before Christmas. As you can see, Apple is driving me bananas.
Update: I’ve decided to wait for the new MacBook Air/Retina. My new iPad Air should keep me happy until then.
2nd Update: I got an 11″ (yes, not 13″) MacBook Air one month ago which I plan to give to my husband as soon as the 12″ MacBook Air Retina is launched this year (if the rumors are correct).