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Home / Hot Stuff / Apple’s MacBook Air gets a power upgrade with the M3 processor

Apple’s MacBook Air gets a power upgrade with the M3 processor

Both the 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Air are 60% faster than M1 thanks to the new M3 chip. Plus, these ones are less prone to fingerprints.

MacBook Air M3

Apple’s MacBook Air is a wildly popular laptop option – especially if you’re looking for something a little cheaper or lighter. And it just became a better option, thanks to an upgrade with the M3 processor. It backs even more power into last year’s redesign with the notch and killing the wedge design.

M3 is the big upgrade with the new MacBook Air models. It’s the first chipset in the industry made using 3nm technologies, just like the iPhone 15‘s chip. It lets Apple cram even more into the processor. The biggest change is the GPU, bringing the biggest upgrade to Apple silicon. Dynamic caching lets the GPU use local memory so only the exact amount that’s needed for each task gets used – bumping performance significantly. Apple reckons these new Air models are 60% faster than their M1 counterparts and 13x faster than the last Intel model. With the MacBook Air, you can spec out a model up to an 8-core CPU and 10-core GPU with up to 24GB of RAM.

Otherwise, things look pretty familiar with the new M3 MacBook Air. It offers the same current design: no wedge and notch at the top. You also get a better keyboard, two Thunderbolt ports, and MagSafe charging. It’s just 11.5mm thin, so remains just as lightweight as ever. The screen is a Liquid Retina Display, which will show up to one billion colours. It can crank up to 500 nits of brightness, so you can view content in all lighting conditions. With these new models, you can hook up to two external displays to the laptop.

You’ll find six dedicated speakers for superior sound. This includes force cancelling woofers, for more bassy notes. On top of this, Apple reckons you’ll squeeze 18 hours of battery life out of the machine. Plus, it’s fanless, so shouldn’t hear a peep while tapping away. And Apple brought over the anodization seal from the black MacBook Pro to make the Midnight model less prone to fingerprints.

As a MacBook Air, it’s one of the cheaper models you can find from Apple’s range. It starts at $1099/£1099 for the 13-inch model, and $1299/£1299 for the 15-inch model. Both are available in Midnight, Starlight, Silver, and Space Gray. You can order the machines today, and they’ll start shipping out on 8 March.

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Connor is a writer for Stuff, working across the magazine and the Stuff.tv website. He has been writing for around seven years now, with writing across the web and in print too. Connor has experience on most major platforms, though does hold a place in his heart for macOS, iOS/iPadOS, electric vehicles, and smartphone tech. Just like everyone else around here, he’s a fan of gadgets of all sorts! Aside from writing, Connor is involved in the startup scene. This exciting involvement puts him at the front of new and exciting tech, always on the lookout for innovating products.

Areas of expertise

Mobile, macOS, EVs, smart home

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