The MacBook Air may feel like the laptop that Apple forgot existed, but the company is reportedly planning to sell a less-expensive model this year.
This rumor comes to us from 9to5Mac, reporting on a pair of private investor notes from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo on Saturday (Mar. 3). Kuo stated that the new Air is due in the second quarter of 2018, but didn't reveal any other details about the product.
MORE: Which MacBook Should You Buy? MacBook vs. Air vs. Pro
Currently, the MacBook Air starts at $999, and gives users a low-res, 1440 x 900-pixel screen. So we're hoping Apple provides a sharper panel on the new model, as many affordable ultraportable laptops ship with Full HD (1920 x 1080-pixel) displays.
Windows machines that run circles around the current MacBook Air in terms of value, design and specs include the Dell XPS 13 (thanks to its edge-to-edge display) and Asus ZenBook 13 UX331UN, both of which start under $1,000.
The Air's lack of USB Type-C ports and its 5th Gen Intel processor are the other two aspects of the notebook that make it look like a relic. Its comfy keyboard, though, helps the Air stand out against the MacBook Pros and lighter 12-inch MacBook, both of which have flat butterfly-mechanism keyboards.
Apple could unveil the new Air at its Worldwide Developers Conference event, which typically takes place in June, though we've heard rumblings of an event taking place as soon as this month (Mar. 2018). Rumors suggest the event will see also Apple reveal new iPads and provide a release date for the AirPower charging mat.