Display size: Both MacBooks have the same size but Pro offers better brightness.
Both the Apple MacBook Air and MacBook Pro feature the same 13.3-inch display. However, MacBook Pro offers 500 nits of brightness compared to the 400 nits on the MacBook Air. It’s a slight difference and unless you keep the two laptops side by side, it’s really difficult to tell the difference.
Design: No change in design
Apple has changed the innards of its laptops but the design remains the same. MacBook Air has the same wedge shaped design whereas the the MacBook Pro has a slab like design. MacBook Air (1.29 kg) is lighter than the MacBook Pro (1.4 kg) and is also the thinner machine between the two.
Colour variants: MacBook Air has more options
While the MacBook Pro comes in Silver and Space Grey options only, the MacBook Air has an extra colour. MacBook Air is available in Silver, Space Grey and Gold colour variants.
Battery life: MacBook Pro has the edge
If you are looking for a Mac with more battery life, then MacBook Pro is the one to go with. Apple claims that the new MacBook Pro offers up to 20 hours of battery life. The MacBook Air is no slouch when it comes to battery life either as it can last up to 18 hours of usage.
Performance: Both evenly matched on paper with subtle differences
Both the laptops are powered by the same processor now. However, MacBook Air starts with a 7-core processor whereas the MacBook Pro has a 8-core processor. Both laptops offer up to 16GB of RAM and 2TB of storage. MacBook Pro does have a fan-based cooling mechanism whereas the MacBook Air goes ‘fanless’ for the first time. If you are into graphic intensive work or edit a lot of videos and images, the MacBook Pro could be a better option as the cooling system might just be better on it.
Speakers and microphones: MacBook Pro has a better set
The speakers on both laptops are similar but MacBook Pro has more features. The MacBook Air has got stereo speakers and a three-mic system whereas the MacBook Pro has same speakers but they support high dynamic range. The three-mics on the Pro also also reportedly better.
Price: MacBook Air is more affordable
The new MacBook Pro starts at Rs 92,900 whereas the MacBook Pro starts at Rs 1,22,900.
Which one should you buy?
The MacBook Air in the past was always meant for those who wanted thin laptops. The MacBook Air was also the ‘lightweight’ in performance when compared to the MacBook Pro. With the new M1 processor, it is more of a level playing field for both Apple laptops now. If you do not to want to make any compromise in terms of battery life, speakers, display brightness, then the MacBook Pro is the right choice for you. It has the best of everything Apple has to offer. However, if you are good with a really powerful MacBook — which is light on pocket and weight — for everyday needs, then the MacBook Air is a great choice.