Apple Love: Is the Macbook Air Worth The Cost?

The Apple tax. You’ve heard of it before. But, is it worth paying for? Most people who deride Apple often cite its high price tag. Critics just don’t think the computer is worth several thousand dollars. But Apple fans might be onto something. Even if you’re very knowledgeable about computers, it’s hard not to be impressed by the build quality and the specs – especially on this year’s line-up.

Good Battery Life

While many people sell their old PCs to after 3 years, many MacBook Airs continue chugging along. That’s because Apple consistently sells very expensive products that last for years. This year, Apple continues to improve on its old design, boosting battery life to 9 hours on the 11-inch MacBook and 12 hours on the 13-inch version. More than that, it provides up to 1,000 full charge and discharge cycles and 30 days of instant on standby time.

It’s Thin

MacBook air models are known for their light weight and slim design. It’s really the perfect computer if you’re a student or you’re in business, but you go out into the field a lot. You can’t really go wrong with this, either way. The thin design also lets you tuck the computer away into tight spots when you’re not using it – something most other laptops just can’t do, and no one has been able to replicate the fit and finish of the Air while doing it.

Improved Storage

The all flash storage is 45 per cent faster on this year’s model. That’s incredible when you consider that the computer was already pretty fast. MacBook Air also wakes up faster than ever because of the upgraded processors Apple has fitted its Air model with. The 11-inch model even comes with double the storage capacity, 128GB, yet it still costs just $999.

It’s Got A Free OS

With every upgrade to the hardware, you expect a software update. Now, with PCs, Microsoft is there and ready to sell you an upgrade for hundreds of dollars. With Apple, the price is Free-99. That’s right, Apple has turned the software world on its ear by offering an entirely new OS for absolutely nothing – nada – zip. You just buy the computer, and you get the OS for free.

This is one of those things that may become a trend, and put serious pressure on software companies like Microsoft – whose business model relies on selling software, not giving it away.

Free Apps

Along with a free OS, Apple bundles free software, and not just the crappy stuff. It comes with iLife (iPhoto, iMovie, Garage Band) and iWork (Pages, Numbers, and Keynote). Those kinds of productivity apps would normally cost you several hundred dollars if you went with competitors’ offerings – and the reality is that Apple’s offering is at least as capable in most situations.

At the end of the day, you pay a lot for a MacBook Air, but you’re not just getting a computer. You’re getting a solution to a lot of problems – a hardware and software platform that simplifies your life and helps you get things done.

Mason Williamson loves technology. He frequently blogs about common questions and concerns everyday people have about technology and software.

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