20th April 2016

MacBook’s Anniversary

Although beautiful, there was a powerful argument to say that the MacBook was overpriced and underpowered. This week Apple quietly refreshed the MacBook incorporating Intel’s 6th generation Skylake M processors. Here we take a look to see what impact these changes have on Apple’s thinnest ever computer.

If you read any of the online reviews about the original MacBook, a common theme was quickly detected. Its thinness, Retina Display and Force Touch trackpad were huge positives but the original Core M processors meant that the MacBook was significantly slower than any of Apple’s current other offerings. It was great for surfing the web, could just about handle photo editing but don’t try to edit video on it.

Over the past year, we have leased a number of MacBooks but they have only gone to those customers who really only needed an office admin level machine. Without doubt, our advice was to lease the 13” Macbook Pro with Retina Display. Pound for pound, it is a more complete machine than the MacBook and cheaper.

So has this changed? The new MacBook now utilises Intel’s 6th generation Skylake M processors and there has been a significant improvement in both processing and graphics performance. Users should benefit from an increase of processing power by 20% and by 25% on the graphics side.

The Skylake processors are also more efficient. The Macbook now offers a battery life that lasts a full 1 hour longer than the previous model. This equates to 10 hours of web use and 11 hours of movie playback. The marmite USB-C port has been kept and a wider range of accessories have been added.

Apart from that the only other change is that the MacBook is now also available in Rose Gold. Meaning that you can choose between Silver, Space Grey, Gold and Rose Gold to suit your style.

The improved performance of the MacBook is noticeable but in our opinion it is still not a MacBook Pro, but then Apple do not want it to be. Recent analysis suggested that the old MacBook was Apple’s bestselling portable computer and as the saying goes if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. It is still eye catching and if you are attending presentations or doing work on the train there is surely no better Mac to draw admiring glances from surrounding people.

Having said that, we would still lean towards the MacBook Pro line up for those people who need something with a bit more oomph.