Reviews

Improvements for the Next Apple MacBook Air

In a recent post, I discussed whether or not I deemed the MacBook Air 2020 to be a a good device, and eventually came out with the conclusion that it was effectively the best laptop for your average consumer as of April 2020 (the time of writing). The MacBook Air boasts the new 10th gen. Intel Core Processor which makes it pretty snappy to use, as well as integrating the new ‘Magic’ Keyboard – this is the perfect laptop for students, and realistically, the majority of adults.

However… All laptops have improvements that need to be made and personally this is what I believe that Apple should aim to improve for their next MacBook Air. In short, this is what they need to improve:

  • The 720p front-facing camera
  • Fingerprint scanner/Face ID
  • Battery Life
  • Display Brightness
  • Touchbar

The 720p front-facing camera

How on earth this still exists on a device that retails starting from $999 is beyond me. Given the situation right now, video calling is becoming more important than ever, and honestly when you have to say the MacBook Air camera is grainy – it’s almost embarrassing. The camera only needs to be at least 1080p to notice a significant improvement to the quality. And finally meet the industry standard. Improving this for next year will be essential, when I believe that more people will take the work from home approach as many individuals will realise during this time that working from home is possible. Most people don’t want to call others when the camera is of the quality of a potato.

2020 MacBook Air showing 720p FaceTime Camera
Credit: Wccftech

Fingerprint Scanner/Face ID

Now, the fingerprint scanner is perfectly good and you can access your laptop very quickly (while not losing security), but I personally prefer Face ID. The current fingerprint scanner can be found on the top right hand side of the keyboard – it also appears like a blank button and so blends in with the keyboard anyway. I would love to see both Face ID and the fingerprint scanner in the next MacBook Air, as then people have the option to use what they prefer. Windows Hello is what I use on my Surface Pro all of the time, and the device is usually open before I have even touched the keyboard. Having Apple put their own spin on how Face ID would work on a laptop, intrigues me, and I hope they can do this for the next model.

Image showing macbook air 2020 keyboard and fingerprint sensor
Credit: CodingCurious

Battery Life

This is only a minor improvement, as the battery life on this laptop is relatively good. Apple claims you get 11 hours, but realistically, you will probably get closer to 9 hours if you use it like a normal person. While that is acceptable, it would be ideal if the battery could last for 2 days. Although, battery life is sometimes a trade-off for weight, especially since this is Apple’s lightest laptop. If you use this laptop throughout the day consistently, then it is fair to say, that like your phone, it will need to be charged every night. Everyone would love a bit of extra battery life, and so I hope that Apple can find a way to accommodate this in the next model.

Display Brightness

The display is a beautiful display, but the brightness is one area where it lacks – and this puts a lot of people off. If you work in the sun often or just generally prefer using a brighter screen, then this is probably something that will make you wait for the next model – or it will make you upgrade to the MacBook Pro. Let me explain why. The MacBook Air has a display brightness of a mere 386 nits, which is poor in comparison to the MacBook Pro lineup that have a display brightness of 500 nits. In the future, I would love to see a brighter display on the next MacBook Air, and I really think this would attract more consumers to the product.

MacBook Air (2018) Review: An almost worthy successor
Credit: MobileSyrup

The TouchBar

Admittedly, at the beginning, I was not a huge fan of the touchbar. However, there is a touch of class that it adds to the device. The MacBook Pro that has the touchbar looks levels above other MacBooks. While it is unlikely that the touchbar will be brought to the MacBook Air lineup, it would allow Apple to distinguish the MacBook Air from other laptops in a similar price range, by making the consumer feel as if the laptop is more premium.

Review Of Macbook Pro Touchbar 2017 - Taco Fleur
TouchBar on the MacBook Pro
Credit: Taco Fleur

Conclusion

As I said in a previous post, the MacBook Air is still a brilliant laptop, but nothing is ever perfect. Making these few improvements could really differentiate the MacBook Air from other similar laptops, and really allow the user to experience an almost seamless experience. If there are any other suggestions that you think I could have missed out on them – comment below.

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