11″ MacBook Air First Impressions

Inspired by Corey, here are a few thoughts on the 11″ MacBook Air.

  • This is my third Air. I previously had the first generation (SSD) and the second generation (also SSD) 13″ models.
  • The size is really amazing. Perhaps more amazing, the machine doesn’t feel fundamentally compromised.
  • The 11″ is a very capable replacement for the previous generation 13″ Air for everything except prolonged development, look for mine on eBay soon.
  • When using the 11″ Air, I feel like I’m using a Mac, not a netbook.
  • The higher resolution screen makes the Air feel somewhat like a previous generation 13″ MacBook.
  • The smaller form factor increases your likelihood of crouching or slumping over the machine.
  • I don’t know what the claims of “instant on” are about. This is just as fast and slow to start up and wake from sleep as my old Air.
  • I can only assume that the folks touting the speed of the new Air hadn’t used an old one, or another laptop with an SSD. Performance is good, but consistent with previous Macs laptops with SSDs.
  • I expect this to be the only laptop I bring while traveling, unless I’ll be somewhere for a longer period of time and doing more serious development.
  • I am carrying the Air with me every day, it fits nicely in some of my iPad bags.
  • I can’t believe that the fully loaded 11″ model is roughly half the cost of the original SSD Air; with twice the storage and RAM.
  • Since laptops are not my primary development machines (I have a desktop at work and home), the primary feature of the for me is size Air. I wouldn’t consider a 13″.
  • When unused and asleep, the battery drains pretty significantly. After a couple of days, it’s down to ~20-50% from a full charge.