Apple isn’t waiting until the fall and macOS Catalina to trot out Mac updates. The company has updated the MacBook Air and the entry 13-inch MacBook Pro with newer hardware and, in one case, a price cut. The Air now starts at an easier-to-swallow $1,099 (conveniently $999 for students) and introduces a True Tone display to the lineup. You won’t find a newer processor or other spec updates, unfortunately, but there’s now a clearer reason to buy the Air versus a 13-inch MacBook Pro. Oh, and there’s no longer a 12-inch MacBook to buy, so your choice for an ‘entry’ Mac laptop just became that much clearer.
The 13-inch base MacBook Pro, meanwhile, is now a much more compelling buy, at least if you like Apple’s current input methods. There’s finally a quad-core, 8th-generation Intel chip inside (either a 1.4GHz Core i5 or an optional 1.7GHz Core i7), and all models now have both the Touch Bar and Touch ID — there’s no longer a legacy keyboard for those who insist on dedicated function keys. That also means you’re getting the T2 chip and “immersive” speakers. A True Tone display upgrade comes along for the ride.
Don’t expect other overhauls, though. The Pro still starts at $1,299 ($1,199 for students) with 8GB of RAM, a 128GB SSD and two Thunderbolt 3 ports ($1,499 with a 256GB SSD), so you’ll still have to pony up if you need more memory and storage. Look at it this way, though: you won’t have to spend nearly as much to get a quad-core Mac laptop as you did in the past.