At this year’s WWDC, Apple unveiled the next-gen M chip, the M2. The Apple-designed silicon is built using second-generation 5-nanometer technology that packs 20 billion transistors – or 25 percent more than the M1 chip. All told the new M2 chip has an 18 percent faster CPU, a 35 percent more powerful GPU (thanks to the next-gen 10-core GPU), and a 40 percent faster Neural Engine.
In addition, the new chip delivers 50 percent more memory bandwidth over the M1 (100 GB/s), and up to 24 GB of fast unified memory – all while being even more power-efficient. The new also affords a high-bandwidth video decoder, supporting 8K H.264 and HEVC video.
It also enables new capabilities like Apple’s powerful ProRes video engine enables playback of multiple streams of both 4K and 8K video, Apple’s latest Secure Enclave for best-in-class security, and a new image signal processor (ISP) that delivers better image noise reduction.
The new M2 chip is available on the completely redesigned MacBook Air and the updated 13-inch MacBook Pro. Speaking of MacBook Air… the new design ditches the wedge design in favor of the more square-off look much like the rest of the MacBook lineup.
However, it retains the MacBook Air’s signature thin and light design, coming in at just 11.3 mm thin and tipping the scales at mere 2.7 pounds. It has an all-aluminum unibody enclosure that is actually 20 percent smaller by volume than its predecessor.
Another highlight is the return of MagSafe charging. With MagSafe, the all-new MacBook Air has a dedicated charging port, leaving two Thunderbolt ports free for other accessories. There is also a 3.5 mm audio jack that supports high-impedance headphones as well as a full-height function row with Touch ID, and a large Force Touch trackpad.
Other highlights include a 13.6 Liquid Retina display that is 25 percent brighter (500 nits) and supports a billion colors, a 1080p FaceTime HD Camera, a four-speaker sound system that is completely integrated between the keyboard and the display with the mics, support immersive Spatial Audio for music and movies with Dolby Atmos, and for the first time, support for fast charge, which gets you 50 percent in just 30 minutes, with an optional 67W USB-C power adapter.
Out-of-the-box, the 2022 MacBook Air is supplied with an all-new 35W compact power adapter with two USB-C ports, thus allowing you to charge two devices simultaneously.
The all-new MacBook Air is available to order with a starting price of US$1,199, with availability next month. Meanwhile, the updated 13-inch MacBook Pro with M2 starts at US$1,299. The aforementioned 67W USB-C power adapter is available separately for US$59.
All images courtesy of Apple, Inc.