Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

The Agony and the Ecstasy of the New MacBook Air’s Battery

The Next Web asked seven owners of new MacBook Airs just how great the battery life is. Unsurprisingly, pretty fucking great:

The increase is considered game changing to their every day life by many […]

For instance, let’s consider the weight. Obviously the Air’s light weight is its major draw – but honestly, don’t you end up carrying that charger, too? Now you don’t need to, so you just dropped the actual weight you’re lugging around by 25%. At this point, your fancy backpack is probably heavier than the computer it holds.

That’s pretty rad. The battery life claims also seem to match Apple’s estimates — a rarity, considering my 2012 Air is rated for seven hours, but gets about an hour less in regular use.

Remember how Steve Jobs described the redesigned 2010 MacBook Air as being the product of a “MacBook and an iPad [hooking] up“. That’s never more true; one of the points emphasized by the owners was “reduced use of [an] iPad”. But David Chartier isn’t convinced by this:

For all the incredibleness of the MacBook Air’s new battery, the device is still dependent on WiFi hotspots and, let’s face it, the internet is an essential ingredient these days for getting most things done.

An iPad is available with a cell modem in it, but no MacBook is, despite an old prototype with the capability. It’s a shame; I’d bet a lot of people would love an iPad-esque pay-as-you-go data plan for their MacBooks. Carrier locking, unfortunately, makes this a giant pain in the ass.