With new MacBook Airs sporting Intel’s Sandy Bridge platform processors and Apple/Intel’s new Thunderbolt transfer technology rumored to be just around the corner, a number of reports this past weekend relayed that the new Airs might also come in black. Specifically, it was rumored that Apple would offer a high-end Air model that would come with black anodized aluminum – which, if you recall, is an old page from Apple’s MacBook playbook where it offered a black model at a premium over the white models.
Following that came a purported email form an Apple employee claiming that while Apple did experiment with offering a black MacBook Air, aesthetic issues resulting from the coating process prompted Steve Jobs to axe the initiative.
The rumors that the next iteration of the MBA’s will have an optional black finish is grounded in truth.
We tried to powder coat the Air’s (and Pro’s for that matter) in black as a test run. There are more than a few floating around campus.
The coating looks good and holds up well, but it also soaks up body oils, making the palm rest look pretty gross. Ultimately that is the reason that the top brass (Jobs) killed the idea… it was just too easy to make the computer look like crap.
At some point we may offer a black coating, but it won’t be powder coat, and it won’t be anytime soon.
Earlier this month we reported on a research note from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo who relayed that Apple has plans to manufacture upwards of 400,000 MacBook Airs in June. At this point, a July launch seems likely, sans the black of course.