When Is the Best Time to Buy a MacBook?

Picking the right moment

Technology moves fast, so it can be challenging to know when is the right time to buy a new device. That's particularly important for new Apple products as premium devices like MacBooks aren't cheap, and you want to get the best value out of your purchase.

Knowing when's the best time to buy new MacBooks is a valuable skill before you hit the buy button and commit yourself to a new purchase. There are some key factors to bear in mind, so you know when's best. Here's a look at what to do. 

Do You Need a New MacBook?

As with any new purchase, it's worth considering if you need a new MacBook. If your current desktop or laptop has failed, then regardless of where the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air are in their product cycle, you almost certainly need to make a purchase immediately.

Where things get trickier is if you're considering upgrading by choice. It's important to know when's the best time to buy a new MacBook to get the best value from it. 

How Often Do New MacBooks Come Out?

It's tricky to pinpoint precisely when new Mac systems come out. Generally, the product cycle is between 12 and 16 months, but that's not always entirely accurate. Sometimes, it can be a much shorter cycle, so it's essential to do your research. 

It's worth paying attention to Apple's events. Apple holds several events each year, with its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) being the biggest one. Elsewhere, there tend to be events in the Spring and Fall, and sometimes random events at other times of the year. For a new MacBook purchase, you should pay attention to WWDC, along with the main events in Spring and Fall. The seemingly random events tend to occur for iPhone and Apple Watch revisions. 

When Should I Buy a New MacBook?

One of the best resources to keep up to date with the latest MacBook rumors is the MacRumors Buyer's Guide. The site keeps track of all the latest Mac and MacBook rumors and quickly assigns a 'Buy,' 'Neutral,' or 'Don't Buy' category to each system, so you know what to do. For instance, while the MacBook Pro 13-inch only came out in late 2020, it's suggested this isn't the time to buy a new one as improved models should be coming soon. 

It's a smart move to buy a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air the moment they're released. The longer you wait, the more likely you're not getting the most bang for your buck. 

How Long Do MacBooks Last?

MacBooks are generally highly reliable devices. When you purchase a new one, it should last several years before you run into any issues. That means a refurbished model can be an attractive proposition.

Apple's own refurbished program typically offers between 15% and 25% off the price of a brand-new product while still providing you with a full warranty and Apple certification. Generally, refurbished models appear around 6-8 months after the launch of a new system, but it's worth paying attention to as stock goes fast. 

  • When is the best time of year to buy a MacBook?

    Apple doesn't offer discounts on its products, but many retailers offer discounts on older MacBooks in the summer before school starts. Also, look for deals around the holidays, Black Friday, and Amazon Prime Day.

  • How do I set up my new MacBook?

    After you power on your MacBook, the Mac Setup Assistant will walk you through setting up your new MacBook. If you're already an Apple user, sign in with your Apple ID to access your iCloud and iTunes library, or create a new one.

  • What is the newest MacBook?

    The latest MacBook models are the M1 MacBook Pro 13-inch and M1 MacBook Air. They look similar to older models, but the M1 chip provides faster processing speed and power than older MacBooks.

  • Are MacBooks still worth buying?

    Yes. Apple makes some of the most powerful lightweight laptops on the market. MacBooks also tend to be the most expensive, so if you just need a laptop for simple tasks like browsing the web and word processing, you should probably get a Chromebook or budget laptop instead.

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