MacBook Air announced with M1 chip, 3.5x performance and 18 hours battery life

Apple has announced its new MacBook Air with M1 chip which provides 3.5x CPU performance and 5x faster graphics performance than the previous generation. Thanks to the improved power efficiency in the new chip, the new MacBook Air provides up to 18 hours of battery life.

MacBook Air with M1 chip

Apple announced the new 13-inch MacBook Air with its Apple Silicon M1 chip during its ‘One more thing‘ event today. Although Apple has not changed the design of the new MacBook Air, it does not feature a fan anymore, which means that it stays silent under heavy workload. The major highlight of the new portable Mac is the M1 chip, which brings along 3.5x CPU and 5x graphics improvements, compared to its Intel-based predecessor. The new chip also allows for 9x faster machine learning performance and 2x faster SSD performance. It also features an advanced camera ISP which brings better noise reduction, greater dynamic range, and improved auto white balance to the MacBook Air webcam, which should help immensely during video calls.

Here are the type of performance and efficiency improvements that you can expect with the new 8-core M1 chip, as per Apple:

  • Export a project for the web with iMovie up to 3x faster.
  • Integrate 3D effects into video in Final Cut Pro up to 5x faster.
  • For the first time, play back and edit multiple streams of full-quality, 4K ProRes video in Final Cut Pro without dropping a frame.
  • Export photos from Lightroom up to twice as fast.
  • Use ML-based features like Smart Conform in Final Cut Pro to intelligently frame a clip up to 4.3x faster.
  • Watch more movies and TV shows with up to 18 hours of battery life, the longest ever on MacBook Air.
  • Extend FaceTime and other video calls for up to twice as long on a single charge.

Apple claims that the M1 chip in MacBook Air makes it faster than 98% of PC laptops sold over the last year.

In terms of other hardware upgrades, Apple has added P3 wide color support to the MacBook Air Retina Display, and also added support for USB 4 with Thunderbolt through its 2 ports. Touch ID is still the main method of biometric authentication, as there is still no Face ID on the MacBook Air.

The MacBook Air with M1 chip is available for pre-order today and will ship next week. The starting price has remained unchanged from $999 for consumers, and $899 for education.

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