We designed the new MacBook to be not only thinner and lighter, but more functional and intuitive than ever before. To do that, we couldn’t just shave a millimeter here, a gram there. So we started from scratch, reinventing each essential element as part of a singular, deceptively simple design. It’s everything there is to love about Mac. In its purest form ever.
A keyboard reimagined from A to Z.
From the beginning, our goal was to design a full, uncompromising Mac experience. And a full-size keyboard is an essential part of that. In order to fit a full-size keyboard in the incredibly thin MacBook, we designed the keyboard from the ground up. Each component has been rethought specifically for the new MacBook, from the underlying mechanism to the curvature of the surface of each key to the distinctive new typeface. The result is a keyboard dramatically thinner than its predecessor. Now when your finger strikes the key, it goes down and bounces back with a crisp, consistent motion that makes typing with precision a breeze.
Traditional keyboards use a scissor mechanism, which tends to wobble around the edges. This creates a lack of precision when you strike anywhere except the center of the key. We needed to reduce key wobbling for a keyboard this thin; otherwise, striking a key off-center could result in the keycap hitting bottom before a keystroke registers. So we designed an entirely new butterfly mechanism, which is wider than the scissor mechanism and has a single assembly made from a stiffer material — allowing for a more stable, responsive key that takes up less vertical space. This innovative design improves stability, uniformity, and control — no matter where you press on the key.
The redesigned keys on the new MacBook feature a larger surface area, a thinner construction, and a deeper curvature, creating a more defined space for your fingertip to naturally find and press the keys. These refinements may be subtle, but the feel is distinct and intuitive. Combined with the butterfly mechanism, this new design allows for much greater control when typing.
When we set out to design an incredibly thin keyboard, one of the first things we considered was how to backlight the keys in a way that took up less space while delivering an even cleaner and more refined look and feel. To do that, we removed the row of LEDs and the light guide panel that distributed light throughout the keyboard and instead placed an individual LED under each key. These LEDs are calibrated for uniform brightness, so every key and character looks clear and sharp with minimal light around the keycap. All while being engineered for as much energy efficiency as possible.
3 million pixels.
0.88 millimeter. Razor sharp.
The 12-inch Retina display on the new MacBook isn’t just picture perfect — it’s also paper thin. In fact, at just 0.88 millimeter, it’s the thinnest Retina display ever on a Mac. A specially developed automated manufacturing process forms the impossibly thin edge-to-edge glass that’s only 0.5 millimeter thick. And we reduced the space between display components for a tighter, more integrated design.
To deliver the gorgeous Retina experience on the sleek new MacBook, we had to innovate on every level, right down to the pixel. So we redesigned the pixels to create a larger aperture, allowing more light to pass through. This enabled us to use LED backlighting that’s 30 percent more energy efficient than the Retina display on any other Mac notebook, yet still achieve the same level of vivid brightness.
The Force Touch trackpad.
Press a little deeper, do a lot more.
The new Force Touch trackpad may look like other trackpads on the surface, but underneath it’s unlike anything that’s existed before. Force sensors detect how much pressure you’re applying, and the new Taptic Engine provides a click sensation when you press anywhere on the surface. Now the click that once was a single, mechanical function is just the start of what you can do with Force Touch. The sensory capabilities of the Force Touch trackpad allow you to tell your MacBook what you want it to do based on subtle differences in the amount of pressure you apply. This makes it possible to perform a variety of different actions in different apps, all on the same surface. And it can respond with haptic feedback you can actually feel, making your MacBook more usable and personal than ever before.
Traditional trackpads use a “diving board” mechanism, which requires room underneath for the downward motion of a click and makes it harder to click the part of the surface closest to the keyboard. With the Force Touch trackpad, force sensors detect your click anywhere on the surface and move the trackpad laterally toward you, although the feel is the same familiar downward motion you’re accustomed to in a trackpad. The Taptic Engine also provides haptic feedback, so instead of just seeing what’s happening on the screen, you can feel it, too. The trackpad sends a tangible response to your fingertip when you perform certain tasks, like aligning annotations on a PDF.
In addition to the intuitive Multi-Touch gestures you may be familiar with — like scrolling, swiping, pinching, and rotating — Force Touch brings a new dimension to the Mac experience. The sensitivity is customizable, allowing you to adjust how much pressure is needed to register a click. And the trackpad can even tell whether you’re clicking with your thumb or another finger and automatically adjusts the sensitivity level.
We squeezed the most into it.
And out of it.
Each component inside the new MacBook has been meticulously designed to get the most out of an incredibly thin and light enclosure. We started with an amazingly efficient processor, coupled with fast Intel HD Graphics 5300, and optimized OS X to draw on the processor using as little power as possible. Because no fan is needed to cool the new MacBook, it runs silently and without any moving parts, and it has more room for battery cells to provide all-day performance.
Inside the new MacBook you’ll find the fifth-generation Intel Core M “Broadwell” processor — the first chip designed with 14-nanometer process technology. This means that the chip is packed with more transistors than the previous generation for higher density and more efficient performance. The Core M processor is the perfect fit for the new MacBook, combining energy efficiency with the performance needed to handle everyday tasks.
The new MacBook is the first Mac notebook ever without a fan. Since the Intel Core M chip draws only 5 watts of power and therefore generates less heat, no fan or heat pipe is required. Instead, the logic board is seated on top of an anisotropic graphite sheet, which helps disperse any heat that is generated out to the sides, all while your Mac stays virtually silent. The new MacBook is made even more efficient by OS X features like Timer Coalescing, App Nap, and Safari Power Saver, which ensure that every task is performed using just the right amount of power. No more, no less.
With the new MacBook, we were able to take what we learned from making thin yet powerful devices like iPhone and iPad and push that knowledge even further. We carefully arranged the processor, flash storage, and memory on the smallest and highest-density logic board ever in a Mac. In fact, it’s 67 percent smaller than the logic board in the 11-inch MacBook Air.
Storage and memory
Even with its miniaturized internal components, the new MacBook has an impressive capacity to store the files and run the applications you need every day. MacBook features 8GB of fast, power-efficient 1600MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory. Combine that with 256GB or 512GB of flash storage2 and you get an amazingly thin and light notebook with snappy performance.