Recycled Computing

$999 MacBook Air Can Cost $1,399

- 2010.10.22

Like everyone, I don't like to miss Apple product intros, becausethere's always a "wow" factor in the new tech, and I can never getenough of those black turtleneck shirts. However, I was just a bitdisappointed about the latest offerings from the Apple mothership.

2010 11 inch MacBook Air

Yeah, I'd like to take a look at the Apple version of thenetbook. But that price tag?

I know, I know, we are all supposed to be privileged laptop andnetbook users and be willing to pay that "Apple premium" to buy thebest. The $999 price point is sacred to Steve Jobs, and there is no wayApple will build a cheap anything, let alone offer a $500 netbook.

I have sad news, folks. I have no problems updating "old" computers,but the new laptops that Apple is putting out have issues.

First, every road warrior carries a spare battery "just in case"they run out of juice on the road or something happens to the firstbattery. Well, you have to take off the bottom of the laptop to replacethe battery. There are tiny screws involved, and you just know what'sgoing to happen to tiny screws when you are trying to swap batteries"on the go".

Secondly, if you want to have more RAM in your MacBook Air, you haveto order it that way from the factory. I don't know if iFixit or anyoneelse has taken apart a brand new MacBook Air yet, but I bet if you wantto do-it-yourself, there would be some tricky soldering involved. So ifyou want more RAM, that $999 price point just got left behind.

Do you want to put in more internal data storage? You have to havethe factory do it for you, but the only way to get a bigger solid-statedrive is to order the $1,199 version of the 11" MacBook Air. And, ofcourse, it costs more.

And what about a faster processor? Apple can do that if you buy the$1,199 model.

That original $999 price tag has climbed a bit, hasn't it? Now itwill cost you $1,399 to buy an 11.6" MacBook Air with 4 GB of RAM, a1.6 GHz processor, and a 128 GB drive.

Compare that to the slew of other netbooks out there. And remember,if you plan to hang on to that computer and if you are buying somethingfor the long haul, you have to max out your purchase right now, becauseyou may not be able to upgrade later on.

If it doesn't bother you to buy a new computer every year or so, Isuppose it's not an issue for you.

I have to say that I'm disappointed. I'll admit that Apple sets thebar pretty high, but this time it appears that it isn't even trying toexceed it. LEM

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