Longing for a Mac laptop with a display smaller than 13 inches? Then you’d better scour eBay for an old-school PowerBook G4—well, that or build a Hackintosh. If you’re ready to wait, though, DigiTimes reports that Apple will venture back into smaller notebook form factors with an 11.6" MacBook Air later this year.
The system will reportedly be "even slimmer and lighter" than the current, 13" MacBook Air, and it will pack a Core 2010 processor. Also, DigiTimes claims technologies introduced in the 11.6" Air will be "broadly used" across the rest of Apple’s products to make them more competitive. Too bad the site doesn’t say what those technologies are. Unibody unobtanium, perhaps?
Assuming this rumor is true, the big question is what Apple will charge for the machine. If it costs the same as the current MacBook Air, the 11.6" model might have the trappings of a traditional ultraportable—fast hardware, fancy features, and a highly inflated price tag. That would be a shame, since the PC notebook market is brimming with cheap consumer ultraportables that still pack eminently decent hardware. Apple doesn’t exactly have a reputation of catering to the value-conscious, though.