Refreshed MacBook Air Line, New 15-inch Model Coming First Quarter of 2012?

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DigiTimes is reporting that Apple will be updating their MacBook Air line of computers in the first quarter of 2012. This line refresh will be accompanied by the introduction of a new 15-inch model. Of course, the MacBook Air currently offers an 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch variants.

In an unusual move for Apple, the report claims that the company will continue to offer discounts on the MacBook Air line right up to the moment they introduce the refreshed models. This is what it looks like when Apple goes for market share.

Of course there have been a string of rumors regarding a new 15-inch, ultra-thin notebook since last July. Recent rumors have even claimed that these machines are nearing production. Additionally, it has not been clear as to whether this new 15-inch model will belong to the MacBook Air or MacBook Pro line of computers.

It is becoming clear what Apple is doing here. Apple introduced the revamped MacBook Air in late 2010 and introduced a lower-cost $999 model. Apple is capitalizing on their popularity and strong sales of the Air to fundamentally change what notebook computers look like. This is why they killed off the venerable white, plastic, MacBook earlier this year. It’s only a matter of time until the MacBook Pro line is either killed off, or morphed into MacBook Air- like form factors. Besides, no other manufacturer in the the industry can match Apple’s profitability and pricing when manufacturing their own ultra-thin notebooks.

In other words, Apple is making the ultra-thin notebook desirable while also cornering the market for it.