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The magical disappearing MacBook Air

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Apple's ultra-thin MacBook Air already owns the "sleek and sexy" high end of the market, but it could theoretically be so much thinner... if not for those pesky USB, Thunderbolt and MagSafe ports. That may be why the laptop hardware rumor du jour has sparked so much attention.

Logically speaking, does it make sense to dump ports for slenderizing? Jason Snell of Six Colors writes of a rational reason the Air could eventually adopt the radical I/O profile (one port only!) posited by rumor king Mark Gurman. The new USB-C connector and USB 3.1 spec, the thinking goes, would replace the charging port, data port and display port -- with 10 Gbps data speed, support for 4K displays, and up to 100 watts of power transfer. It's certainly within the realm of engineering possibility.

Would that make for a "magical, revolutionary" laptop? No, but the design of an even-thinner Air pushes it back to its original purpose as a specialized ultra-portable Mac for people with very specific needs.

Personally I love my 2011 Air, all 11 inches of it and with its adorable missing E key. I always lusted after the original Air, because I loved the portability -- and when I started traveling a lot, lugging around a huge MacBook Pro got really bad for my back.

The MacBook Air is inevitably going to get thinner, just as the iPad has. I'm pretty sure Gurman is on point with this one, or we'll see some variant of a Mac with just one port and killer battery life in an impossibly small package.

In this article: macbook air, rumor
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