If you're like me, you're probably getting tired of the constant ping-ping of MacBook Air launch dates. It's coming this week, it's coming next week, I just want the darned things to ship already.
There's been rumblings that the next-generation MacBook Air would arrive this week (alongside Lion) but hopes were dashed when Tuesday and Thursday came and went without the telltale "We'll Be Right Back" post-it note appearing on store.apple.com.
AllThingsD's John Paczkowski now reports that the third-generation (3G?) MacBook Air will indeed arrive next week on either Thursday (7/21) or Friday (7/22). The new Airs are expected to rock new Intel Sandy Bridge processors, high-speed Thunderbolt ports, backlit keyboards and 128GB and 256GB SSDs.
Yes, I said 128GB SSDs. Even in the 11-inch model.
In addition to dropping the previous 64GB SSD configuration, Concord Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (via Electronista) believes that Apple has configured the new Air with a minimum of 4GB RAM "to improve Lion's performance." Kuo also writes that the Air SSDs will still come on socketed micro SATA modules (like the current model) noting that they won't be soldered on the motherboard as was previously rumored.
Some pundits have suggested that Apple might be waiting until after its Q3 2011 earnings announcement -- which happens on Tuesday, July 19 -- to launch Lion and the 3G Airs. The rationale is that Apple would push the announcement until after the earnings call just in case something went wrong with the launches. If true, this would be unfortunate because it would mean that Apple didn't have much faith in its new products.