Connecting decision makers to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas, Bloomberg quickly and accurately delivers business and financial information, news and insight around the world.
+1 212 318 2000
Europe, Middle East, & Africa
+44 20 7330 7500
+65 6212 1000
Posted by: Reena Jana on March 12, 2008
So dissing the MacBook Air is now old-ish news, as critics have voiced their concerns with the laptop and its missing features. But…it’s a wonderful device to use. (Yes, I have one.) Even with the so-called lack of features.
I say this because there are a few points that the skeptics have made over and over again that are slightly illogical. One complaint is that owners would have to carry around a separate DVD drive, and that carrying around extra, necessary accessories would be a huge pain. But in many of the same reviews, critics have complained that because the Air’s battery is not removable, this prevents them from carrying a spare battery. While I totally understand the point of having a back-up battery, the logic behind complaining about having to carry around extra items with the Air seems somewhat fuzzy, to an extent at least.
Also, regarding watching DVDs — well, I have to say one reason I opted for the Air is because I found myself downloading TV shows and watching them on my iPod while traveling to ease up on bulk by not carrying my bulky laptup. And I find myself carrying around Netflix DVDs of shows I wanted to catch up on less and less—a few less objects to worry about losing while on the road. So for anyone who is already moving away from DVDs, this argument isn’t so relevant.
OK, so I personally don't have the need for many USB ports, nor for a huge, huge hard drive. And I don't even feel that bad that there's no Ethernet port, although I could get an attachment for it, which to me isn't such a big deal (I rarely use the Ethernet jack). I'm reminded of when MacBook's stopped having a floppy drive, or a dial-up jack. People were upset. But other laptops followed, because these features became obsolete. I see a parallel here, and my laptop lifestyle was starting to reflect the phasing out of DVDs and Ethernet jacks before the Air was released.
Then again, I'm not the type making regular long-distance flights to Asia from the US for business, so I don't have the same needs as some of the road warriors who've complained about the Air's omissions. And I'm in the market for a super-light, super pleasant-to-use personal laptop, which the Air is. The screen is large and beautiful. The backlit keys are great. It is just gorgeous to look at, with rounded edges as smooth as a river stone. Not to mention its super-svelte silhouette. It's a dream to carry and handle -- all of the critics seem to agree on the Air's aesthetic appeal, which undeniable. And it is significantly less expensive than the new ultraslim ThinkPad from Lenovo, especially for a "fun" laptop that I use at home, or when traveling without my work-issued, practical laptop. While so many of us are ready to dismiss the Air in general, for a certain type of user, there are still many reasons to like, or even love, it.
What comes next? The BusinessWeek Innovation and Design team of Michael Arndt and Helen Walters chronicle new tools for creativity and collaboration, innovation case studies in both the corporate and social sectors, and the new ideas that have the power to change the way things have always been done.