8GB of RAM in the new MacBook Air M3 is not enough. This is not a new movement at Apple

  • In these times of cheap memory, upgrading to a MacBook with 16GB of RAM is expensive.

  • The iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max have the same RAM as their MacBook brothers.

  • According to Apple, 8GB behaves like 16GB on other devices.

A few minutes ago, without a presentation or pre-event, Apple introduced the new 13.4- and 15.3-inch MacBook Air. Two laptops that are more like the Pro than the Air, thanks to the Apple Silicon M3 chip, Wi-Fi 6E connectivity and prices starting at €1,299.

Problem? The cost to upgrade to the base model with 16GB of RAM is very, very high. Specific, 1529 euros for the smallest MacBook Air13.4 inches, 16 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD storage.

A little air, a little air. The good part of the film: the MacBook Air is practically a MacBook Pro, we are talking about proposals with an IPS LED screen with a resolution of 2460 x 1664 pixels, Apple Silicon M3, four speakers, Dolby Atmos sound…

They’re still smaller and their panels have significantly less brightness than the Pro models, but they offer an enviable balance for a significantly lower price.

8 GB of RAM is here to stay. More than 1500 euros. This is the price we have to pay if we want to choose the smallest MacBook with 16 GB of RAM. In particular, Apple continues to charge 230 euros for a RAM upgrade, with the ability to configure up to 24 GB in these models.

A MacBook Pro with 512GB of base memory (the minimum recommended for these devices) costs up to €1,759. An additional cost of 230 euros, which is not justified for a simple reason: the MacBook requires a base memory of 16 GB of RAM.

According to Apple, 8GB is 16GB.. The controversy is not new; already in November 2023, Apple countered the criticism with its basic memories. According to the company, “The 8GB MacBook Pro M3 is likely similar to 16GB on other systems. As a result, we can use them much more efficiently.”.

Apple is right that macOS is generally more efficient at managing resources than Windows. The arguments fail in scenarios where memory drain is really noticeable, such as video editing, photo exporting, etc. Common scenarios for an Apple product user and where in the specific case I suffer horrors with my M1 with 8GB RAM.

Movement “similar” to iPhone movement.. Apple has never been a company betting on Characteristicsand iPhones are proof of this. Until recently, the base iPhone started at 64GB, with the first Pro models bumping that up to 128GB. In fact, the iPhone 15 Pro itself still has 128GB of storage, with a base 256GB reserved for the Pro model. .

Difference? Even the iPhone 15 Pro has 8GB of RAM, the same memory found in the small iPad Air. Without real multitasking and with applications that require fewer resources, the system is comparable in RAM to the 2024 MacBook Air.

The price of memories in free fall. The price of memories is getting lower and lower. So much so that a 2 TB SSD can be purchased for 100 euros, which would cost us about seven times more if we decide to expand the memory in the MacBook Pro.

The fact that the industry is moving towards cheaper storage devices has not affected Apple’s strategy. Prices for expansions are still high, and basic memory is the same as it was several generations ago.

A path that will have an inevitable end. Stretching out the cud due to poor memories has never been a problem for Apple. The release of these Macs in 2024 with 8GB of RAM is proof of this, but now the question is how long can they continue releasing machines with this base memory.

The MacBook Air’s target isn’t the same as the Pro’s: they’re aimed at the “average” user who needs a Mac with enough power to last through the years and who, using certain apps for work, doesn’t have great aspirations.

That’s still not a good enough excuse, since making 8GB of RAM suffer is as easy as tightening some nuts without much effort in programs like Final Cut or Adobe Lightroom. 8GB of RAM in macOS is enough for basic use, but enough to take (just) one step further.

Image | Manzana

In Hatak | RAM: what is it, what is it for and how to see how much of it your computer or mobile phone has

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