Living in the future: Apple’s super-thin MacBook reviewed

Type-C USB is also hard to mess up, providing a cable that can’t be plugged in the wrong way, making it reversible, just like Lightning, Apple’s replacement to the iPod dock connector, and just like the iPhone and iPad, Apple even provides a similar power pack, with a small power block rated for 29W that has a USB Type-C connector plug into it.

In fact, when you look at the USB Type-C connector, it even reminds you of Lightning, with a similarly sized port completely with a similar shape, only this port is male rather than female Lightning.

iPhone 6 on top with Lightning, Macbook on the bottom with USB Type C
iPhone 6 on top with Lightning, Macbook on the bottom with USB Type C

However, it’s the way that Apple has designed the power pack that screams USB Type-C is the future, not just for laptops, but phones and tablets, because wouldn’t it be better to replace Lightning and microUSB with something that was compatible with everything in your life?

It has already been seen in the other components for the MacBook that this computer represents the future, so why not keep that momentum going with the power port?

Well that’s exactly what Apple has done, providing you a taste of the future and making the whole package complete.

Where it goes wrong is by not including any adaptors in the box, and by only bringing one of these ports.

Want a traditional USB port? That'll be $29.
Want a traditional USB port? That’ll be $29.

We’re not sure if the future has truly arrived, but most people are still pretty reliant on a USB dongle of some sort, whether it’s for a thumb drive, an external hard drive, 4G modem, sound card, digital camera, SD card reader… really, we could go on, but the point is USB is used in such a large amount, it’s hard to imagine the world is ready for a move away from the standard connection.

That said, you can buy a converter to make this available for $29, or you can buy one for $119 that has either power, HDMI, and standard USB, or power, VGA  and USB.

Essentially, though, you need to pay around $120 extra to turn the MacBook regular into a regular MacBook with the ports you’ve come to expect, and for many, that will be too hard of an ask, especially when they can just get that in another computer, when they can get that in another Mac today.

And that’s fine, because this first-generation product isn’t made for you.

It’s not made for photographers keen to get photos from their camera via an SD card slot, and it’s not made for video editors because simply there just isn’t enough grunt.

Want to charge your MacBook, add a USB port, and have HDMI out? That'll be $119.
Want to charge your MacBook, add a USB port, and have HDMI out? That’ll be $119.

The first generation MacBook Slim — our name, not Apple’s — is made for people who want to be on the cusp of technology, and have something that says “I’m already a part of the future”, and aren’t concerned if they have to fork out an extra hundred bucks for the privilege of plugging in the drives they’re generally reliant on.



Make no mistake, Apple’s MacBook is something special, and its lack of a model moniker tells us how confident Apple is that this is an example of a machine from the future, with a sexy thin and sleek look like no other, a beautiful screen, a truly light weight that won’t tax the back and barely bothers the hand, and even a surprisingly decent battery.

And you know what? Apple is right.

The MacBook is a statement of what’s to come, and it’s an awesome declaration at that.

How many computers can you rest comfortably in your hand?

But it’s a first-generation product, and as such it still has some things to iron out, such as the inclusion of only one port, and not a standard one at that — not yet, anyway — as well as performance that could be tightened up just a little bit.

If neither of those things bother you and you’re already living in a wireless world, relying on a phone and/or tablet to take care of your life, you will love the MacBook, as it’s not just an excellent machine, but also a sign of things to come, and if living in the future is your idea of awesome, this is one machine you’ll have to check out.

Value for money
Ease of Use
Reader Rating0 Votes
Beautifully designed with premium materials; So thin, so light, so pretty; Another of Apple’s exceptional Retina-grade screens; Surprisingly good battery life for a machine this size; Despite how thin it is, the keyboard is surprisingly comfortable to type on; Almost like a taste of the future today;
Not at all a high-performance machine; Only one port, and it’s a type of port that you can’t find really anything available for (beyond Apple’s expensive adaptors); Requires one of these adaptors if you want to simultaneously charge the device and use the USB port for data; No memory card slot, SD, microSD, or otherwise; No FaceTime HD camera; Could be seen as expensive;