Thursday, March 13, 2008

Getting my hands on a MacBook Air

I spent yesterday morning hanging out with some of the Apple Canada folks at their Richmond, B.C. offices. It was my first opportunity to get my sweaty paws on one of the new MacBook Air portables.

On paper, the MacBook Air's 3 pounds doesn't seem like a big difference from the 5.8 pound PowerBook I currently lug around, but the difference - in the real world - is significant. The Air is light without feeling cheap or flimsy. It still has substance, y'know?

It's a slick, slim machine, with a bright display and a slightly recessed keyboard that doesn't touch the screen, so no more greasy outlines of keys on the monitor.

I'm still holding out, though, for a second generation model that recognizes that portable computers can do without lots of USB ports, but can't do without replaceable batteries.

Apple's Brian Hutchison also showed off the new Time Capsule device, which combines a hard drive with a 802.11n Airport router. I happen to have one of these on my desk, but haven't had time to unpack it yet.

I love the price points on these, though: $329 for a 500GB drive and $529 for a 1B drive. Priced for purchase!

The other thing that Hutchison walked us through was the major upgrade to Aperture 2. I'll confess that before today I had written this software off as strictly for professional photographers, but after seeing what Aperture can do, I'll be dumping iPhoto, thank you very much.

Stay tuned to my Straight "Techno Logic" column for a feature on this impressive software and its 100+ new features. I'll link to it from here when it publishes.

Always fun spending time with the Apple folks. They give us media types really nice t-shirts, too.

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rawbean said...

Ohhhhh my next computer is going to be a mac laptop. My brother has three! He said the new air one is significantly more expensive though.

That shirt btw was from off the net (the desmond shirt).

Blaine Kyllo said...

Does your brother have Bootcamp/Parallels running on any of his Macbooks? I'm wondering how well the Macs handle Vista, for eg.