On March 9, the tech world awaited eagerly as CEO Tim Cook promised the unveiling of the Apple Watch at Apple’s (AAPL) media event “Spring Forward.” Between the ensuing social media storm and analysis, the 12-inch 2015 Macbook received muted praise for its new design and directive. But now its time is almost here, with the new Macbook’s release date coming up this month. We take a look at the new Macbook’s specs—including Retina display—along with its price and other details below.
The newest addition to the Macbook line symbolizes a deviation from the standard platform, built more like an ultrabook given its outdated Intel Core M processor and extremely light, high-battery capacity design. Apple decided to ditch internal components such as the fan and larger motherboard to make space for more battery packs.
Indeed, the entire motherboard of the 12-inch 2015 Retina MacBook would fit inside an iPhone. While the Core M processor delivers roughly the same performance as the 2011 MacBook Air, it is extremely energy efficient and in spite of doubts, Apple was still able to improve graphics — supporting a 4K and 2K display at the same time. The new Macbook essentially highlights Apple’s desire to quickly shift into the wireless, energy-efficient, ultra-mobile future it realizes laptops are heading into. Whether it took that dive too early is another question, entirely, but it may be a fair one to point out.
The new Macbook will be for sale in stores and online starting on April 10. Though many observers believed Apple would have used its developer conference to launch the new MacBook, it decided to announce it just before the April 24 release date of the Apple Watch at “Spring Forward.”
Model Prices and Specs:
The new 12-inch MacBook is available in Silver, Space Grey and Gold:
- Starts with a 1.1GHz Core M, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD model costing $1,299
- Every model brings a 12‑inch (diagonal) LED‑backlit Retina display
- The 1.2GHz Core M, 8GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD model costs $1,599
- On the Motherboard is an 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. chip
- Intel HD Graphics 5300 on every model
The Retina Display brings an edge-to-edge cover glass and resolution of 2304×1440 with an aspect ratio of 16:10 — roughly equal to the same 227ppi found on the new Retina MacBook Pro. The display is just 8.8mm thick and it uses 30 percent less energy, according to the Apple Store.
One of the more useful and exciting components of the new Macbook, which was unveiled at “Spring Forward,” was the butterfly mechanism keyboard: an all-new design, with keys 40 percent thinner, yet with 17 percent bigger keycaps. The mechanism makes them less wobbly when typing and more fundamentally consistent with a natural typing pattern. A new backlighting system, with one LED per key, will also be standard on all models.
The second functional design change Apple introduced is called the Force Touch trackpad. The redesign has created four force sensors that enable a “Taptic Engine,” similar to what the Apple Watch uses for feedback. These sensors are pressure sensitive so that users can control a Force click task that is different dependent on touch.
The 2015 MacBook is very thin, measuring just 13.1 mm thick when closed. The aluminum composite unibody case weighs just over 900g, making it the lightest Mac ever made and 24 percent thinner than its predecessor. The built-in 39.7-watt-hour lithium-polymer batteries can provide up to nine hours of wireless Web and 10 hours iTunes movie playback.
As you have more than likely heard, the 2015 MacBook’s chassis is too thin for a standard USB port. To alleviate this issue, Apple introduced the dreaded, previously rumored, new reversible USB Type C connector. Amazingly, it’s the only port on the entire laptop. Simply put, this means the microUSB sized port will be used for everything from transferring data to charging the unit, itself. By design the USB Type C connector is twice as fast as USB 3.0.