Apple’s First 12-inch Retina MacBook to be Declared Obsolete at End of June

Appleosophy | Apple's First 12-inch Retina MacBook to be Declared Obsolete at End of June

According to an internal memo obtained by MacRumors, Apple is planning to add the original 12-inch MacBook (Retina, 2015) to its list of obsolete products starting June 30. Originally introduced on March 10, 2015, this tiny MacBook was Apple’s smallest and lightest laptop to date, even thinner than the 11-inch MacBook Air back then. This laptop also packed in a 12-inch active-matrix in-plane-switching Retina display, which was even more advanced than the MacBook Air’s TN panels back then. The last supported operating system to run on this machine was macOS 11 Big Sur, which will stop receiving security updates as soon as macOS 14 will be released to the public.

Not only it was even the first MacBook to be fanless, but also it brought a few firsts for the Mac lineup such as USB-C connectivity, an all-metal enclosure, and the Force-Touch trackpad.

However, it was criticized heavily for its limited input/output as it had only one USB-C port, so you can’t really charge and plug in external devices simultaneously. Additionally, because this MacBook uses a passive-cooling system, and Intel processors were not efficient back then, the performance would throttle on this machine severely. The real problem was the keyboard since Apple switched from the traditional scissor-switch mechanism to a butterfly mechanism. This different design would cause the keyboard to be prone to failure, and the MacBook Pros introduced in 2016 would follow suit. Apple even faced a lawsuit before the company decided to revert back to the scissor-switch keyboard that’s marketed as the “Magic Keyboard.”

The first iteration of this MacBook was discontinued in April 2016 as Apple announced the next iteration of this machine. The 12-inch MacBook was finally discontinued on July 2019 and the MacBook Air was considered to be the replacement for that device. Since it was over seven years since the discontinuation of this generation, it’s no surprise that it will be on the obsolete list.

We’re expecting an all-new addition to the MacBook line ahead of WWDC, which will be the long-rumored 15-inch MacBook Air.

Nick Soong
Author: Nick Soong

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