How Apple Will Make A Thinner, Lighter 12-Inch MacBook Air [Rumor]

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The MacBook Air already feels impossibly thin and light, but it’s set to get even thinner and lighter if a rumor out of Asia is to be believed.

According to a leaker on Chinese forum Weiphone, Apple is planning a radical redesign of the MacBook Air “soon.” Don’t expect an ARM-based MacBook, though: we’ve previously explained why Apple’s not likely to do that any time soon.

Rather, Apple will make the new MacBook Air thinner by eliminating the fan assembly, which is part of what makes the Air thicker on one end than the other. It’s perfectly doable: the Haswell processors that the MacBook Air uses are efficient enough that there are already ultrabooks on the market without fans. Presumably, though, such a move will further increase the gaming performance gap between the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air.

In addition, the rumor suggests that Apple will save space within the new MacBook Air’s chassis by eliminating the physical clicking mechanism in the trackpad. If true, that’s sort of a bummer: the clickiness of Apple’s trackpads is very satisfying from a tactile perspective. I’d hate to see that replaced with a less tangible trackpad, like the Microsoft Surface.

In addition, the rumor suggests the new MacBook Air would come in a 12-inch variety. I wonder if this is the source of the iPad maxi rumors?

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About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his wife and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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