Apple just refreshed its MacBook Pro laptops in May, but it’s already making a slew of other changes to its laptop line. The company has stopped selling the 12-inch MacBook and is announcing a new 13-inch entry-level MacBook Pro and a cheaper MacBook Air.
Apple is updating its entry-level $1,299 13-inch MacBook Pro with several upgrades, including the addition of the Touch Bar found on the pricier model, faster quad-core 8th generation Intel processors, and the company’s T2 security chip among other changes. Compared to the 13-inch Touch Bar-enabled MacBook that Apple had already been selling, the new model will offer faster processors and graphics and four Thunderbolt 3 ports.
The MacBook Air is getting a $100 price cut, bringing the price down to $1,099. Other than its new price, the only major difference between the new Air and the model Apple launched last year is its screen, which now comes with Apple’s True Tone feature. True Tone shifts the screen’s white point to match the color temperature of lighting in the user’s surroundings. It’s previously been available on Apple’s recent iPhone and the Touch Bar-enabled MacBook Pro models among other products.
Both launches coincide with the start of Apple’s back-to-school promotion, and each new laptop will be $100 cheaper for students.
Apple is cutting the 12-inch MacBook from its lineup after initially launching it in 2015 and updating it in 2016. The company has largely focused on its MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lines since then.
Apple positioned the 12-inch MacBook as being the next iteration of its consumer-grade laptops when it launched roughly four years ago. It was the first laptop to ship with the now-controversial butterfly keyboard, which has spurned complaints from customers who have experienced issues with it in recent years. While the laptop was praised for its super thin and portable design, some critics also found Apple’s decision to include only one port to be too limiting.
The removal of the 12-inch MacBook from its lineup also comes just after Apple updated the MacBook Air for the first time in several years in late 2018.