I purchased the new MacBook Air M2 last week via the iStore website using the same day delivery service. I qualified for it because my order was placed early, and it was the only way to get your hands on one. The MacBook Air M2 is currently not yet available in-store (as of 25 July).

MacBook Air M2

It was also the first time I could do a real world test of the iStore’s ‘same day delivery’ service. Honestly, I didn’t know what to expect, because in the e-commerce world in SA, same day is usually reserved for groceries, right.

My order went through at 08:02 (LOL), and it was delivered by 3pm while I was out. I am impressed at the turnaround because this was previously unheard of; and a first for me.

Quick Look

  • M2 chip, 8-core CPU, 8-core GPU; 8GB of RAM; 256GB of storage
  • 13.6″ LED backlit display; 2560×1664 pixels
  • 52.6Wh battery; 30W charging plug; MagSafe 3 charging port
  • 2x USB-C ports (Thunderbolt 3; USB 4); 3.5mm audio jack
  • 1080p HD camera; four speaker sound system; 3-mic array
  • Dimensions: 30.41 x 21.5 x 1.13cm; 1.24 kgs

I’ve been using it for a few days and wanted to share my first impressions of the features that I’m enjoying, which is a noticeable update from my previous Intel Macbook Air.

Before I get into it, the M2 Air has been completely redesigned, clearly signalling a new era for Apple’s chipsets. I absolutely adored the original and iconic tapered design. It’s what made it stand out, and it fit everywhere (my smaller bags), and I squeezed it into an 11″ case.

MacBook Air M2
MacBook Air M2 new profile

I don’t dislike the new design, I’m just taking a while to adjust to it because it looks like a Pro now. I preferred them to look different. Oh, at it no longer says “Macbook Air” below the screen. And the Apple logo on the outside is now about 30% larger but I covered my laptop in stickers.

TOP 5 MACBOOK AIR M2 FEATURES

1. Battery Life
The first time I charged it up to 100% and started using it, it remained on 100% for well over an hour of usage. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I knew Apple’s chipsets are more efficient and battery life would be improved too but experiencing it for the first time was something else. I’m still on 56% as I type this from that original full charge – crazy. WFH allows me to experience the benefit of not sitting in front of my laptop from 9-5.

The new M2 Air has a 52.6Wh battery that comes with a 30W charging plug with the base model, which is what I have. There is a 67W fast charger option but I don’t have it; I’ve seen it can charge to 50% in half an hour.

2. Brighter Display
The display is brighter on the new Air. I sit outside on my patio in winter and work in the sun, so my screen brightness is usually cranked up. There is a huge difference now at 500 nits, when compared to my old Air at 400 nits. The display is also 13.6-inches, whereas it was 13.3 before, which no longer fits a laptop cover I have, but that cover was more for an 11-inch and the tapered designed allowed it to close. It’s such a minor difference but bummed I have to buy a new cover.

MacBook Air M2

3. Speaker Quality
The speakers are now integrated above the keyboard; there are no visible speaker grills like before. The speakers have been upgraded and feature four speakers that support spatial audio when playing music/video with Dolby Atmos. I played music side by side with my old Air and there is a huge difference in quality. It has been improved significantly. I used to previously have my laptop connected to external speakers, I don’t have to do that anymore for video calls/meetings. And there is now a three-mic array system, also beneath the keyboard.

MacBook Air M2
Four speakers and three-mic array under the keyboard

4. Keyboard
Coming from the previous butterfly keyboard that was not well received, though I didn’t hate it, the new keyboard has that satisfying clicky feel to it. It’s soft and a real pleasure to type on. I just want to type all the things. Keys are well spaced out, backlit, and now have a row of of full sized function keys on top, unlike before. The key for the fingerprint sensor is large with a round indent; an upgrade from the tiny square on my previous Air.

MacBook Air M2
MacBook Air M2 with full sized function keys

5. M2 Chip
It’s my first encounter with Apple’s chipset and it’s just as incredible as you would have read about for the last two years. I can open tons of tabs, use both Chrome, Safari and Photoshop, among other apps and there is no stuttering, or loud sounds on PS. I have very basic needs when it comes to a laptop. I’m not a video editor and don’t need intensive resources. I don’t need to max it out for my testing, because I’m all about real world usage and in the real world, that ain’t me. I can appreciate the efficiency, especially when it comes to battery life.

L-R: MacBook Air 2019 vs. MacBook Air M2

I’m happy I finally got my upgrade. I’m a writer who researches, browses, watches videos, listens to music, uses photo editing software but very rarely would I edit a video on my Mac. I shoot on mobile and pay for apps on iPhone to edit. That said, I know it has the capability should I need it in future. I love fast charging and want the 67W plug but not anytime soon.

MacBook Air M2

This is a first impressions post on what stood out the most for me. I will do a proper review.