With Black Friday coming up, there are already some great deals on MacBook Airs and Pros, with more likely to come. And you shouldn’t hesitate to buy one.
With the recent news that Apple won’t release new Macs until next year, you may have decided to put off that Mac purchase. While you can definitely wait until next year to get a better model, we think Black Friday is the perfect opportunity to invest in a new Mac. If you’re not sure whether to buy now or wait until later, here are a few reasons why you should make the investment.
It’s a perfect storm of deals
Apple hasn’t released a new Mac since the Air arrived in July, so each model is ripe for big discounts. The older but still excellent M1 Air is currently on sale for $799 and the new M2 Air is $150 off. The 14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro are both $500 off. And the Mac mini is down to $750. Even 24-inch iMacs are $150 off.
To help you shop, we’ve put together some guides to help you find the best Black Friday deals. We track the deals and post them in the articles below.
The waiting game
If you tend to wait, you will have to wait a long time. It’s speculated that Apple won’t release new Macs until March 2023, likely by the end of that month. That’s a long four months from now (three months if your new Mac purchase is a Christmas present). That time could be spent reaping the benefits of a new Mac: the improved speed, the better graphics, the new designs.
When Apple releases its new Macs, they’ll be on sale at their normal prices, and you’ll still have to wait several weeks (or even months) before they see substantial cuts. The Macs being replaced could also be reduced in price, but are you willing to wait and see what the chances are that prices won’t drop much further?
Since Apple regularly updates its products, it’s easy to get caught up in a cycle of always waiting for the latest and greatest. But you’ll benefit almost immediately from a new Mac and quickly recoup that money through time saved with a better experience.
Read further: Black Friday may be your last best chance to buy a Mac before prices skyrocket
Marginal and huge profits
I mentioned the improved processing speed as an immediate benefit, especially if you’re upgrading from an Intel-based Mac to one with an M1 or M2 processor. The M1’s boost over Intel can be well over 30 percent, and more with the M2.
But the performance boost from the M1 to the M2 is relatively marginal – between 10 and 15 percent. You have to do some serious calculations to notice that difference. In general use (web access, productivity tasks, and general Finder tasks), the difference isn’t felt at all – and that’s the bulk of the upgrades we expect from next year’s updates.
If you use an Intel Mac and want to wait for M2 versions of the Mac mini or the 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro, you certainly can. But unless you’re creating 3D content, shooting videos, writing apps, or doing other CPU-hungry tasks, you’re waiting for extra performance that you won’t notice.
No major changes along the way (with one exception)
If you’re waiting to see if Apple will make design changes to its Macs, you’re going to have a long wait. The iMac, Mac Studio, MacBook Air, and the 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro have designs that are just over a year old or younger. Apple isn’t going to change those Macs any time soon. The 13-inch MacBook Pro isn’t likely to change either, as Apple uses it to appeal to a particular segment of the market without having to make a major investment in a new device.
Mac mini enthusiasts have a more complicated situation. Apple’s $699 and $899 models with an M1 have a design that’s been around since 2010. Reports say Apple could release a redesigned M2 Mac mini in spring 2023, but some rumors also say the new model could just be a more expensive replacement for the current $1,099 Intel-based Mac mini. By the way, even though the new Mac mini is smaller than the current model, the current Mac mini is quite small to begin with. So unless you really need a Mac smaller than the current Mac mini, there’s not really any reason to wait.
The only Mac worth waiting for is the new Mac Pro. Apple currently only offers Intel-based models, and when it introduces an M-series Mac Pro it will likely have a new design as well. However, the Mac Pro is not the kind of product that goes on sale on Black Friday and is also bought by the type of user who doesn’t wait for the sale because they need the power straight away. So Mac Pro buyers can sit back until 2023.