I have been an Apple customer for about two decades. I have owned most of their notebooks and loved even their most quirky machines. I loved the Cube. I adored the table lamp style iMac. I love the Powerbook Duo. The first MacBook was all I could think about when in the intensive care unit, fighting for my life. And every 18-months, I upgraded. It was not a tough decision — a year or so later, the machine lost about a fourth of its value — and it allowed me to buy the newest model.

Not anymore. I had bought a brand new 16-inch MacBook Pro at the end of 2019. I wanted a photo editing machine, especially for use when traveling to far off destinations. It is a pretty fantastic photo editing machine. However, it sucks when attached to Apple’s XDR Display. In a quiet room, MacBook Pro fans are like afterburners on some random street racer in Fast and the Furious. The (clearly first world) problem has gone away in the 2020 version of the MacBook Pros.

So I wondered, how much can I get for my 8-month old Macbook Pro? I mean if it was not too much, I would be happy to upgrade to new model. Unfortunately, the cost is too much. Apple’s official trade-in says that I could get $1530, which is what you could get on eBay. That is a depreciation of $3000 or about $375-a-month. Ouch! The upgrade is not as automatic as it used to be. Maybe it is the news of the pending launch of ARM-based machines that has depressed the prices. An alternative theory is that Apple and its machines are so commonplace and people don’t buy laptops as often that Mac machines have lost any resale value.

R.I.P., MacBook

Eleven years after Steve Jobs introduced it to the world, the original 12-inch MacBook is done and dusted, designated to the scrap heap of laptop designs. The news made me very sad. I have appreciated the design and aesthetics of this machine, and to me, it will always represent the Apple design team’s willingness to dare. Of course, we are living with a whole new Apple these days.

The word is that, with folks buying the new MacBook Air (which boasts Retina screens and powerful machines) and eschewing the MacBook, it makes sense that Apple would cut the old model from its product line-up. But the new Air isn’t for me. (Granted, I am also the guy who will never buy Allbirds or own a Prius.) I will always remain a fan of the MacBook.

As someone with minimalist tendencies, it is not a surprise that I fell in love with the idea of a super-skinny and minimal laptop that could slide into a manila envelope. I was on a hospital bed when Apple introduced the clearly underpowered and feature-challenged notebook in 2008. It was called MacBook Air then, though eventually, it became just a MacBook. The initial response to the laptop was harsh – I mean, everyone hated it. Continue reading “R.I.P., MacBook”

The New MacBook

Ever since my friend Matt got his new 12-inch (with Retina) MacBook, I have been lusting to try it out. Unfortunately, they are in short supply. Apple sent me a unit to try out and I am eventually going to write about my experience, but here are three photos that tell you everything about the aesthetics of the device. It is thinner than the latest copy of The Rake magazine. First thing you notice — the space gray color is actually gorgeous. It is light and feels like a well crafted product. Apple’s ability to innovate under the hood is what truly makes it an exceptional company. It is on display in this 2-pound marvel. The new MacBook is a marriage of ingenuity, industrial design and possibilities of technology. I look forward to putting it through the paces — not like your gadget reviewer, but more like a guy who travels a lot and hates carrying extra weight. These photos were snapped using a Sony A7-II camera and a Zeiss 1.8/55 mm lens.
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