Macbook Air: Weighing the Pros and Cons

Apple’s subnotebook wunder-machine is nigh. I’ve been waiting for an ultralight Web and writing machine for a long time now. So, should I run out and pant outside my local Apple store until the first units arrive?

Based on the information available right now, let’s weigh the pros and cons …


The Macbook Air is slim and light.

The unit’s multitouch-equipped touch pad looks interesting, but I’d have to try it out for myself to gauge its worth.

The Macbook Air offers up to 5 hours of battery life.


Limited connectivity. There’s only one USB port, and USB hubs never seem to work as well as built-in ports do. There’s no Ethernet adapter, either.

Disposable? The battery is apparently not user-replaceable, nor is RAM, nor is the hard drive. It’s one thing to sell a disposable $300 mobile device, it’s quite another to sell a disposable $1,800 to $3,000 notebook. Who among us has never swapped a notebook battery, or upgraded our RAM?

Five hours of battery life sounds great, but I assume that’s for a Macbook Air outfitted with a solid-state drive, which adds $1,000 to the cost of the unit. I’d rather pay less for a device with much less storage. I can keep more data up in the AIR, right?

My Snap Judgment (subject to change):

If my checkbook were fat enough, I’d probably preorder the Macbook Air immediately. Of course, in the land of “ifs,” I’d probably also buy myself a whole branch of Fry’s Electronics to use as a personal playground of gadgetry and wires.

However, as things currently stand, I’ll probably wait for a few generations of Macbook Air notebooks to pass by (along with several friendly price drops) before I’d pick up one of these very slick-looking machines.

How does the Macbook Air strike you?