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Apple Macbook Air M1 2020 Review

We take the Apple MacBook Air M1 model from 2020 and put it to the test to see if it truly the best and most affordable Mac on the market.

apple macbook air m1 2020 review

Our Verdict


Power, performance and price all in one beautiful Apple design. There's nothing to not love about the MacBook Air M1.

When it comes to choosing a lightweight laptop for daily use, that’s as powerful as it is portable – and affordable too – admittedly, it’s not necessarily an easy task. However, the MacBook Air M1 delivers with a slim-line design, an unexpectedly powerful system for such a compact laptop, and ultra long battery life. Not to mention, a rarity in the Apple product family, it also comes with a fairly affordable price tag. 

If you’re looking for the best MacBook that’s super reliable at the lower price range for an Apple laptop, and boasts the perfect combination of power and a battery that lasts and lasts, then we might have found the perfect model for you.

Here are the Apple MacBook Air M1 2020 specs:

Apple MacBook Air M1 2020 specs
CPU 8-Core M1 CPU
GPU 7-Core GPU
Screen 13.3″ Retina, 2560 x 1600, True Tone
Battery Up to 20 hours
Storage 256GB SSD


  • Great battery life 
  • macOS Big Sur is fast and responsive
  • Silent to use 
  • Keyboard lasts well 
  • Superb display


  • Not a new design compared to its predecessor 
  • Fanless design may impact performance 
  • The Macbook Air M1 Pro has better sustained performance

Compared to its predecessor, this MacBook is extremely similar in regards to its operating system and applications. However, if you dig below the surface, you’ll find one big difference – the Apple M1 Chip. This chip is a game-changer for MacBooks, especially as it offers up to three times faster CPU performance, up to six times faster GPU speed, and up to 15 times faster machine learning abilities when compared to the previous generation chips. It’s a total powerhouse. In simple terms, it’s got to power to handle just about anything you could ask of it.

What’s great about this model is the fact that Apple has finally produced a laptop that’s more budget conscious. Compared to its other designs, the Apple MacBook Air M1 2020 is one of the cheapest designs Apple has ever launched, it really dominates the competition as one of the best laptops under $1000. Despite its lower price, it truly feels like no compromised have been made, thanks to its high performance capabilities.

apple macbook air m1 2020 review - an image of the rose gold macbook air

Powerful and performance in classic MacBook fashion 

If you’re going to buy a MacBook, you want it to offer the perfect combination of power and performance, not to mention longevity. Thankfully, this M1 model does just that; it’s extremely high performing while also being unprecedentedly powerful, and thankfully, it is built to last. 

It’s the kind of laptop model that is designed to be versatile and can be used for a wide manner of tasks, from low-performance basic admin tasks to heavier duty day-to-day use. There’s no denying that this device performs exceedingly well, no matter what it’s being used for – making it ideal for school, work, and everything in between. The only pull back here could be the SSD being on the smaller side but upgrade options are available prior to purchase. 

Compare it to its competitors and there’s no contest. There’s no arguing with the fact that the M1 chip is absolutely incredible. In fact, the performance of the MacBook Air M1 is so impressive that even if you’re currently considering buying a MacBook Pro, you might want to consider this laptop as a more budget-friendly alternative. 

It’s worth noting that usually there’s a big difference between how well a MacBook Air and a MacBook Pro performs, but with both 2020 models featuring the same chip, both devices offer very similar levels of power, and thus performance. With the key difference between the two machines being the price points. 

Fantastic battery life and great design for everyday joy

Two of the key factors – aside from the game-changing M1 chip – that make this laptop stand out against its competitors are its fantastic battery life and sleek, fan-less design. 

The battery life of this laptop is absolutely great. For anyone looking for a powerful but lightweight laptop with long battery life, this is definitely the model to opt for. It might not boast a battery span that lasts as long as a Chromebook but it definitely lasts a lot longer than MacBook users are used to. 

Thanks to the fan-less design, this laptop runs absolutely silently, which is a real bonus. Although, while it’s nice to have a laptop that doesn’t make a lot of noise when running, it’s not clear how well this design handles heat. 

The three top lines of the MacBook Air M1 are affordability, power and long-lasting battery life. 

apple macbook air m1 review - an angled image of the rose gold macbook air m1 sitting on a wooden desk

Apple MacBook Air M1 2020 Review Summary

When I tested the Apple MacBook M1 2020 in real time, I couldn’t help but be impressed by how fast it ran, combined with how quiet its operating system was to use.

I was also impressed by the battery power this model offers, making it ideal for working on the go, an essential feature in a post-Covid world. Whether I was working from home, from the office, or from a coffee shop, I felt confident that the battery power would see me through. 

In terms of performance, the machine felt smooth and seamless to use and work on. It never let me down and there’s a certain satisfaction to using a laptop that is capable of combining a sensible price point and unreal power.