Official MacBook Air dual display support is finally here

MacBook Air M3 dual display support
Image: supplied.

With the official MacBook Air M3 announcement overnight, Apple added a much-requested feature to its popular consumer laptop range: external dual display support.

A staple of the MacBook Pro laptops equipped with an M2 Pro chip or above, Apple’s more affordable laptops can finally connect to two monitors at the same time. Previously, the Air could only connect to a single external display, which was one of its few drawbacks. Great for creative projects and general productivity tasks, you’ll never go back after getting used to a multi-display workspace.

However, there is one slight catch: the M3 MacBook Airs only support two monitors when you close the laptop lid. So, while you can’t have the equivalent of three displays, with two external monitors and the laptop screen, at least you can use two decent-sized displays when working at a desk.

Dual display support for MacBook Air equals more fun

Via the M3 MacBook Air’s Thunderbolt 3 / USB4 ports, you can connect to one external display of up to 6K resolution at 60Hz, and an additional monitor of up to 5K resolution. Considering the laptop’s ports also support power supply, you could connect the new Air to a station like the Belkin Connect Pro dock to streamline your cable management.

If you constantly work between multiple documents or edit complex video projects, you’ll know just how helpful a dual-monitor setup is. While the closed-lid requirement is a minor caveat, it now means you don’t need to fork out more money just to get a laptop capable of handling two external displays. Undoubtedly, the MacBook Pro is a terrific laptop, but most people don’t need the level of raw power it contains.

In addition to the much-requested external dual display support, the new MacBook Air also includes faster Wi-Fi 6E technology and the M3 chip’s increased processing power. Apple spent some time hyping up the AI features made possible by its Neural Engine neural processing unit (NPU), which we’ll no doubt hear more about at WWDC24.

You can pick up the MacBook Air M3 laptop in 13 or 15-inch sizes starting this Friday, 8 March. Pre-orders are live now on Apple’s website, with prices starting from $1,799.

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