Apple MacBook Air 2013 – Specs, Features, Price and everything you need to know (Detailed Review)

Heidi Speare December 13, 2013 4

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Apple recently unveiled its latest version of Apple MacBook Air at WWDC 2013. This new model was named as Apple MacBook Air 2013 and came with a number of new features, changes and improvements. The most attractive feature on this notebook was the introduction of the Intel Haswell processor and an improved version of SSD that made it extremely fast and efficient.

At the event, there was a lot of talk about the new features and hardware that this new laptop was equipped with. Apple praised the device like always, but now its time to check out how good the new Apple MacBook Air 2013 really is. We bring to you a detailed review of this new portable computer that has set new benchmarks in the world of mobile computing and is on its way to becoming one of the best notebook computers ever.

Yes, we are positive about the Apple MacBook Air 2013 and we have our reasons. In this review, we will tell you anything and everything you might want to know before buying this laptop or gifting it to your loved ones. So let’s get down to business.

macbook air 1

APPLE MACBOOK AIR 2013
The Apple MacBook Air 2013 is the slimmest and one of the most efficient notebook computers offered by the company. The Apple MacBook Air 2013 is available in two screen sizes namely 11.6-inches and 13.3 inches. Both these models have the exact same hardware configuration, and there are hardly any differences that you need to worry about.

The 11-inch MacBook Air 2013 provides up to 9 hours of battery backup whereas the 13-inch model provides up to 12 hours. The other important difference is that the 13-inch model has a SDXC card slot that is not available in the 11-inch model. We have you have already considered the main difference by default – screen size.

Both these versions come equipped with low-power consuming Intel Haswell processors and have Intel HD Graphics 5000. They also use next generation flash storage system that is up to 45 percent faster than the previous generation. In addition to this, these notebook computers uses the latest 802.11ac technology for Wi-Fi. So you can experience wireless performance that can be up to 3x faster than the previous generation. And you don’t have to worry about compatibility either, because the notebooks are fully compatible with all older Wi-Fi standards and technologies.

So are you excited to know more about the MacBook Air 2013? If yes, good for you; if no, then you are soon going to change your mind as you read on. We bring to you all the details and information you might be looking for, so sit tight, relax and enjoy this MacBook Air tour.

1. OS X MAVERICKS
One of the most important reasons to get Apple MacBook Air 2013 would be to use OS X Mavericks on it! You can use this new OS on any other compatible Apple computer as well, but it just comes as an added bonus and a positive reason to get the Apple MacBook Air 2013!

As Apple likes to say, ‘OS X Mavericks is the world’s most advanced desktop operating system.’ And we would like to add saying, ‘Apple MacBook Air 2013 is one of the best computers to try it on!’ Even if you decide to go with the standard version i.e. Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage, these 3 specs will become a deadly combination and deliver performance like never before!

Screen Shot 2013-12-08 at 9.06.59 pm

Let us not forget that we talking about power and performance in a laptop that is as slim and light as it can get and at the same time deliver battery backup that’s even better than the Apple iPad! OS X Mavericks is FREE for download on the Mac App Store and here is a list of features that you should know about:

  • AirDrop
  • AirPlay
  • Dictation
  • Gatekeeper
  • Notification Center
  • Facebook Integration
  • Twitter Integration
  • Multiple Display Support
  • Finder Tabs and Tags
  • iCloud
  • iCloud Keychain
  • Dashboard
  • Mission Control
  • Spotlight Search
  • Safari Power Saver
  • App Nap
  • Power Nap
  • Compressed Memory
  • Built-in Sharing

2. BUILT-IN APPS
The Apple MacBook Air 2013 model comes with a number of built-in apps that will help you with your day-to-day work. Some of these apps are so good that you won’t need anything else for your work as well. And the best part is that if you have been using the Apple iPhone or iPad, the all these apps will make you feel at home from day one.

The Apple MacBook Air 2013 runs on the latest version of Mac OS, OS X Mavericks. The company has optimized all of these in-built apps in order to make full use of the hardware and deliver optimum performance. So if you are planning to get yourself an 11-inch or 13-inch MacBook Air 2013, then we strongly suggest that you check out the list of apps you will be ale to get without having to spend any extra money.

The best way to describe these apps is to tell you what Apple thinks about it. So go ahead, take a look at what Apple has to say about some of these apps. We have mentioned some of the best and important ones in the list here, but you can check out the entire list in the above image.

Screen Shot 2013-12-08 at 9.12.39 pm

Safari
Safari has great features and innovations that let you enjoy more of the web. With Shared Links, it’s easy to see web pages shared by people you follow on Twitter and LinkedIn. It’s also easy for you to share web pages. Just click the Share button to tweet, post to Facebook, or send to a friend. There are energy saving technologies that let you surf longer. And built in privacy features that protect you from being tracked as you go. With blazing performance and support for the latest web standards, there’s no better way to browse.

Mail
Mail is the simplest, most powerful way to manage email on your Mac. It’s easy to set up and works with popular email services like iCloud, Gmail, Yahoo!, AOL, and Microsoft Exchange. If you have multiple email accounts, add them to Mail and access them all from one place. With Mail, you can work with messages in your inbox when you’re offline, too. Searching is fast and powerful. Attaching files or images is as simple as dragging and dropping. And with a choice of views, Mail makes full use of your widescreen display. So it looks as great as it works.

iBooks
Launch iBooks on your Mac and any book you’ve downloaded on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch will automatically appear on your bookshelf. And there are over 2 million more to discover and buy in the iBooks Store. Reading is easy and intuitive – turn pages with a swipe and zoom in with a pinch. If you’re a student hitting the books, you can keep as many open as you like. And when you take notes or highlight passages on your Mac, iCloud pushes them to all your devices automatically. It even remembers which page you’re on, so you can always pick up right where you left off.

Mac App Store
Just like shopping the App Store on your iPad and iPhone, the Mac App Store offers thousands of apps to browse and purchase on your Mac. New apps install in one step right to Launchpad. And now the Mac App Store can automatically update your apps for you, so you always have the latest versions

iTunes store
iTunes is the easiest way to organize and enjoy the music, movies, TV shows, apps, and books you already have – and shop for the ones you want to get. And now with iTunes Radio, you can listen to free streaming radio stations featuring the best selection of music.

iPhoto
iPhoto gives you everything you need to do everything you want with your photos. Keep them organized and easy to find in lots of different ways. Use powerful yet simple editing tools to perfect each shot. Send your photos via Mail and Messages. Post them to Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr. Create entertaining slideshows, or share your pictures with friends and family using iCloud. You can even turn your favorite shots into gorgeous photo books, cards, calendars, and prints – all without ever leaving iPhoto.

iMovie
With iMovie, you have a great home for all your home video. An all new design makes it easy to browse and lets you share your favorite moments instantly. And when you want to transform a few clips into your all time favorite movie or trailer, iMovie gives you the tools to share it with your closest fans or make it ready for your world premiere.

Garageband
Creating great music on your Mac has never been easier. Or more fun. GarageBand gives you a dream collection of amps and stompboxes, an all new Sound Library of instruments and loops – even a virtual session drummer that follows your lead. And you can release your hit single to the world in seconds. From music lessons to mastering tools, GarageBand has everything you need to make and share truly great music, while having a blast doing it.

Pages (alternative to MS Word)
From the first letter you type, you’ll realize how natural it is to make beautiful documents in Pages. Paint a picture with words. Or add a picture, shape, or interactive chart. Tools for whatever you’re doing appear right when you need them. When you’re ready, you can share in lots of ways with a single click. Writing has never been so effortless. Period.

Numbers (Alternative to MS Excel)
Numbers helps you make spreadsheets more insightful – and more beautiful. Drop your data into a stunning, Apple designed template. Or start with a blank canvas. Add in some quick calculations. Then visualize the numbers with a dramatic interactive chart. Suddenly, you see what it all means. How beautiful is that?

Keynote (Alternative to MS PowerPoint)
Start by choosing a polished Apple designed theme. Bring in photos and videos, and tweak them with powerful graphics tools. Spotlight crucial points with animated, interactive charts. Then cue up cinematic effects and transitions. It’s all available from an intuitive interface. With Keynote, giving a spectacular presentation is astonishingly easy.

Special Offer – Pages, Numbers and Keynote for FREE
If you go to the Mac App Store, you will notice that the above-mentioned apps (Pages, Numbers and Keynote) have been priced at $9.99 each. But the good news is that consumers who have upgraded to Mac OS X Mavericks, and especially MacBook Air 2013 consumers can get all these apps for FREE!
All you have to do is download a trial version of iWorks from the Internet and install it on your computer. Once you have installed Pages, Numbers and Keynote, head to the Mac App Store and check for updates. You should see update notifications for each of the 3 apps; simply download them all and you are done!

3. HARDWARE SPECS and FEATURES
The Apple MacBook Air 2013 is a beautiful piece of engineering! Not only is it faster than all the previous models, but at the same time it delivers extremely great battery backup! An added advantage (in a way) is that the MacBook Air does not use retina display. Due to this, there is a lot lesser load on the processing system and lesser pixels have to be pushed for every frame.

Hence, there is very little heat generated and the computer is able to deliver great battery backup. So if you were planning to wait for a retina display enabled MacBook Air, we really do not think you should do so. The MacBook Air 2013 is already great enough and we do not feel the need of an even higher resolution display. We won’t stop you from getting a retina display model and we respect your choice, but that would be like getting a 5-inch smartphone with a 2K resolution. You will know that it’s there, but will hardly ever notice it.

macbook air 3

Apple MacBook Air 2013 (11-inch)
DISPLAY

  • 11.6-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen display
  • 1366 by 768 pixels native screen resolution
  • No Retina display

PROCESSING SYSTEM

  • Intel Core i5 chip
  • 1.3 GHz dual-core processor
  • 3 MB shared L3 cache
  • Turbo Boost up to 2.6 GHz
  • Intel HD Graphics 5000
  • 4 GB of 1600 MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory

STORAGE

  • 128 GB of internal flash storage ($999)
  • 256 GB of internal flash storage ($1199)

CAMERA

  • 720p FaceTime HD camera

DIMENSIONS and WEIGHT

  • Height: 0.11-0.68 inch (0.3-1.7 cm)
  • Width: 11.8 inches (30 cm)
  • Depth: 7.56 inches (19.2 cm)
  • Weight: 2.38 pounds (1.08 kg)

BATTERY

  • Built-in 38-watt-hour Li-Po battery
  • Up to 9 hours wireless web
  • Up to 8 hours iTunes movie playback
  • Up to 30 days standby time

CONNECTIONS and PORTS

  • Two USB 3 ports (up to 5 Gbps)
  • Thunderbolt port (up to 10 Gbps)
  • MagSafe 2 power port
  • Headphone
  • Dual mics

WIRELESS

  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi networking (IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n compatible)
  • Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology

AUDIO

  • Stereo speakers
  • Dual microphones
  • Headphone port

KEYBOARD and TRACKPAD

  • Full-size backlit keyboard with 78 (U.S.) or 79 (ISO) keys
  • 4 arrow keys (inverted “T” arrangement)
  • 12 function keys
  • Ambient light sensor
  • Multi-Touch trackpad
  • Supports various gestures

Apple MacBook Air 2013 (13-inch)
DISPLAY

  • 13.3-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen display
  • 1440 by 900 pixels native screen resolution
  • No Retina display

PROCESSING SYSTEM

  • Intel Core i5 chip
  • 1.3 GHz dual-core processor
  • 3 MB shared L3 cache
  • Turbo Boost up to 2.6 GHz
  • Intel HD Graphics 5000
  • 4 GB of 1600 MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory

STORAGE

  • 128 GB of internal flash storage ($1099)
  • 256 GB of internal flash storage ($1299)

CAMERA

  • 720p FaceTime HD camera

DIMENSIONS and WEIGHT

  • Height: 0.11-0.68 inch (0.3-1.7 cm)
  • Width: 12.8 inches (32.5 cm)
  • Depth: 8.94 inches (22.7 cm)
  • Weight: 2.96 pounds (1.35 kg)

BATTERY

  • Built-in 54-watt-hour Li-Po battery
  • Up to 12 hours wireless web
  • Up to 10 hours iTunes movie playback
  • Up to 30 days standby time

CONNECTIONS and PORTS

  • Two USB 3 ports (up to 5 Gbps)
  • Thunderbolt port (up to 10 Gbps)
  • MagSafe 2 power port
  • SDXC card slot
  • Headphone
  • Dual mics

WIRELESS

  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi networking (IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n compatible)
  • Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology

AUDIO

  • Stereo speakers
  • Dual microphones
  • Headphone port

KEYBOARD and TRACKPAD

  • Full-size backlit keyboard with 78 (U.S.) or 79 (ISO) keys
  • 4 arrow keys (inverted “T” arrangement)
  • 12 function keys
  • Ambient light sensor
  • Multi-Touch trackpad
  • Supports various gestures

4. CUSTOMIZABLE OPTIONS
If you have been pleased by the Apple MacBook Air 2013 but are interested in adding more power, performance and storage to suit your needs, you will be happy to know that you can do so! In order to help consumers get exactly what they want, Apple provides a number of custom choices.

And if you haven’t guessed it already, if you plan to customize your MacBook Air 2013, you will have to do so separately. These custom models are not available on the spot and aren’t directly offered by retailers either. You will simply have to go through a longer process, but it’s definitely going to be worth it. These changes can be made only when you place an order, you won’t be able to upgrade your computer later!

Finally, don’t forget that these changes will cost you extra money, so be sure to check your budget and then decide whether you really need these custom changes. As a matter of fact, even if you are open to spending, be sure that you really need these custom changes for your needs. Because the MacBook Air 2013 is already equipped with some of the best hardware in the market and performs extremely well.

Now, we bring you the most important point about customization! The only way to customize your Apple MacBook Air 2013 is by going to the online Apple Store and selecting the parts that you want. Officially, there is no other way to do this.

Processor
Instead of the standard Intel i5 chip, you have an option to choose the Intel i7 chip. The details of the Intel i7 chip are as follows:

  • Intel Core i7 chip
  • 1.7 GHz dual-core processor
  • 4 MB shared L3 cache
  • Turbo Boost up to 3.3 GHz

RAM
Instead of the standard 4GB RAM, you can choose 8GB of RAM. The details of the RAM are as follows:

  • 8 GB of 1600 MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory

Storage
Instead of the standard 128GB or 256GB of flash storage, you can choose 512GB of flash storage. The details are as follows:

  • 512 GB of flash storage

5. SOFTWARE TESTS
We know that this point is important, so we did some tests ourselves. We want you to know about all the things we have tried out on the Apple MacBook Air 2013. For all our tests, we used the standard 13-inch model with 128GB of flash storage. Later in the post, you will understand what we meant when we said ‘standard 13-inch model.’

What we wanted to focus on was software, because that is the most important reason why consumers buy computers – to run software. We won’t be getting into the details, but we want to assure you that we have done adequate amount of testing in order to confirm that the following software(s) ran smoothly on our MacBook Air:
Unity

  • Apple Xcode 4
  • Apple Xcode 5
  • Adobe Flash CS5
  • Adobe Photoshop CS5
  • Adobe Soundbooth CS5
  • MS Office (Word, PowerPoint and Excel all at the same time)

Each of this software had no problem whatsoever, and we ran them for almost half and hour each. We agree that there might be changes in the amount of load that the notebook will have to work with for software like Apple Xcode or Unity (tools used to develop game and apps for the Apple platform), and even Flash or Photoshop (tools used to design and animate stuff).

So yes, we know that there might be variations! But for regular use, and even standard use, none of these tools should create any kind of problems for you.

Screen Shot 2013-12-08 at 9.07.31 pm

6. IN THE BOX
No matter what screen size you choose and what configuration you pot for, you will get the same things inside the white box you will get. The Apple MacBook Air 2013 packaging is very similar to the Apple iPhone or iPad. Apple you get is the laptop, the power cord and very small piece of documentation. The box itself is so small and compact that it will remind you of the time you got an iOS device (i.e. if you have done so once at least).

  • Apple MacBook Air
  • 45W MagSafe 2 Power Adapter
  • AC wall plug and power cord
  • Printed documentation
  • Electronic documentation

7. PRICE TAGS
We have already mentioned the prices for all the different models of Apple MacBook Air 2013. But the thing is we ‘just mentioned’ the prices. We do not want you to go looking for them once again and do not want you to miss out on the pricing details even if you missed them earlier.

So if you are planning to buy any of the Apple MacBook Air 2013 models, it’s important that you know how much money you will have to spend. So we present to you the prices of all the standard models in a very simple way. If you plan to customize your computer, the prices will vary depending upon the items you want to upgrade.

Apple MacBook Air 2013 (11-inch)

  • $999 (128 GB flash storage model)
  • $1199 (128 GB flash storage model)

Apple MacBook Air 2013 (13-inch)

  • $1099 (128 GB flash storage model)
  • $1299 (128 GB flash storage model)

Custom parts and others accessories
Processor

  • Intel Core i7 chip
  • 1.7 GHz dual-core processor
  • 4 MB shared L3 cache
  • Turbo Boost up to 3.3 GHz
  • EXTRA AMOUNT TO BE PAID: $150

RAM

  • 8 GB of 1600 MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory
  • EXTRA AMOUNT TO BE PAID: $100

Storage

  • 512 GB of flash storage
  • EXTRA AMOUNT TO BE PAID: $300
  • (NOTE: This option is only available when you select the 256GB model as your default)

Apart from these standard upgrades to the internal hardware, there are a lot of other accessories offered by Apple. The accessories include external displays, portable drives and more. We have not added all of them to the list, but can check them out on the online Apple Store. If you are interested, simply follow the source link provided at the end of the post.

Configure your Apple MacBook Air 2013 on the App Store

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4 Comments »

  1. GD-UK  December 15, 2013 at 6:13 am - Reply

    Very useful article which has helped me to go for the 13″ model. Thank you.

    • rogue  December 16, 2013 at 12:59 am - Reply

      oh really?? 😛
      GD dude.. u made the best decision ever..
      i have this 13 inch model of mba.. it is awesome !!
      and ya.. great post

  2. sagar  December 22, 2013 at 2:25 am - Reply

    nice post
    is this better than mbp retina??

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