At first glance, the Surface Laptop is a good alternative to Apple's MacBook Air. Even though, at least right now, the latter seems to be a forgotten product in the lineup.

The actual target market audience may be a little different because Microsoft is going after the students directly. However, Apple laptops have long been a favorite of those with student loans. So any comparison seems fair.

Let's take a quick look at these two laptops side by side.

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Surface Laptop vs. MacBook Air Technical Specifications

MacBook Air

Category Surface Laptop Apple MacBook Air
Display 13.5-inch Pixel Sense display
10 point multi-touch
13.3-inch LED display
Display resolution 2256 x 1504i
Aspect Ratio: 3:2
1440 x 900
Aspect Ratio: 16:10
Software Windows 10 S macOS Sierra
Processor 7th Gen Intel Core i5 or i7 Intel Core i5 or i7
Storage 128GB, 256GB, 512GB Solid State Drive (SSD) 128GB, 256GB, 512GB PCIe Solid State Drive (SSD)
Memory 4GB, 8GB or 16GB RAM 8GB RAM
Graphics i5: Intel HD graphics 620; i7: Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640 Intel HD Graphics 6000
Ports One full-size USB 3.0, Mini DisplayPort, Headset jack, Surface Connect Two USB 3.0, Thunderbolt 2, SD card slot, headset jack
Battery 14.5 hours of use Up to 12 hours
Pen Surface Pen No
Weight 2.76 lbs 2.96 lbs
Dimensions 12.13 inches x 8.78 inches x 0.57 inches 12.8 inches x 8.94 inches x 0.68 inches (thickest point)
Price From $999 From $999

Not a close fight

For once, Apple is pretty much outclassed across the board. And again, that's down to the fact the MacBook Air hasn't had a meaningful upgrade in some time. Considering the entry level models of both cost the same, it's utterly damning to see what you get extra with Microsoft's laptop.

There is no room for Thunderbolt 2 in 2017.

A better display, better processors, better graphics, potentially higher RAM, it's lighter, it's thinner, has better claimed battery life and has digital pen support. When you look down the MacBook Air specs, the fact it still runs a Thunderbolt 2 port shows its age.

It's almost insulting to the premium laptop space that Apple even still sells the MacBook Air. Let alone still sells it for a thousand dollars. No-one should buy this MacBook Air in 2017. No-one.

So, the choice is pretty clear. If you're comparing these two, get a Surface Laptop, because it's actually a 2017 laptop and is worth the money. Windows 10 is superb and honestly, even this Windows-specific site can recommend you a better MacBook to buy if you're absolutely dead set on one of those.

Any of them. Just not the MacBook Air.

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