Peer Review: Not just hot Air— what critics loved about the new MacBook

A few special, privileged news sources got review copies of the MacBook Air this week. When the reviews first came out, we published a list the machine's five biggest drawbacks: strong criticisms that nearly every reviewer agreed on. What that round-up didn't indicate was at the same time that critics were complaining about key flaws— short battery life, a limited remote disc system, incompatibility with older chargers and many USB devices, the proprietary optical drive— they couldn't get over how much they loved the machine.

Click Continue to read what the critics liked about the Air (with one exception).

The innovations that make the Air so thin are important for future Apple laptops
"For the rest of Apple's consumer base it's now just a matter of time before other Mac laptop lines benefit from the technical and engineering advances that made this thing so thin and light." , Engadget

It just feels good
"It's impossible to convey in words just how pleasing and surprising this computer feels in the hand. It's so svelte when closed that it's a real shock to discover the big screen and keyboard inside." , The Wall Street Journal

Especially on your lap
The Air doesn't run as hot as Apple's other laptops— it's actually possible to work for an hour with the device on your lap without the feeling that your fertility is at stake. The gentle curves and the absence of protrusions make this an instant object of techno-lust, another notch in Apple's belt of design triumphs. , Newsweek

It's skinny but solid
"it's a remarkably sturdy-feeling machine, especially given its size and weight." , USA Today

The Remote Disk program is a useful workaround
[Remote Disk] works seamlessly, even when you’re accessing a Mac software installation CD in a Windows computer… as a satellite machine for travelers, executives and presenters, it’s spectacular." , The New York Times

Multi-touch track pad was really pretty useful
"The three-finger forward/back gesture was immediately useful, and we're already missing it when using another laptop." , ZDNet

Actually, Macworld's tests have nothing positive to say so far
MacBook Air's score of 123 is the lowest score we've recorded for any Intel-based Mac laptop… Of course, the MacBook Air's appeal is not about blazing speeds, but about small size and weight. However, these tests do give some indication about what level of performance users will have to give up if they've decided to forego a MacBook or MacBook Pro for the thin embrace of the MacBook Air. , Macworld

I'm in love
"I'll go ahead and call it the most simple, focused, and beautiful laptop ever. And the MacBook Air's shortcomings matter no more than the discomfort that fashionistas endure while wearing high heels, or car fanatics do when they have to fill up their tanks twice a week in their 5MPG sports cars. It just doesn't matter to those who are smitten." , Gizmodo


Last Week: Jobs's Apple Keynote was a mixed bag