Following a forum post by a reputable user on the Chinese website WeiPhone claiming Apple could soon release a new 12-inch MacBook model without a fan and featuring the Retina display and a redesigned trackpad, Taiwanese trade publication DigiTimes is now reporting that a new version of the company’s ultra-thin notebook, the MacBook Air, is getting a Retina display treatment later this year, around the same time when a rumored 12.9-inch iPad Pro is reportedly dropping as well…

DigiTimes quotes unnamed Taiwan-based suppliers who speculate that Apple will launch a MacBook Air with Retina display and a larger iPad in the second half of 2014.

Apple’s partner Quanta Computer is said to be responsible for the production. This jibes pretty well with another DigiTimes story last November naming Quanta as a manufacturer Apple had apparently contracted to build a rumored health/fitness wearable device and the supposed big screen iPad.

Quanta is currently a final assembler of Apple’s MacBook Air and MacBook Pro notebooks. Apple last refreshed the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro family in June and October, respectively, so both systems will be soon due for an upgrade.

MacBook Air (teaser 001)

Having recently phased out the iPad 2 in favor of the Retina-capable iPad, Apple is expected to do the same with its notebook family. That being said, a Retina upgrade for the MacBook Air sounds like the next logical step in the firm’s continuing streamlining of its product line.

We recently asked you whether Apple will launch the MacBook Air with Retina display in 2014 and nearly three out of each four respondents said ‘yes’.

It will be interesting seeing whether the Retina MacBook Air will sacrifice battery performance for the Retina display because those ultra-sharp screens require powerful backlighting due to densely-packed pixels.

Already most of the Air’s interior is occupied by the battery so Apple’s engineers can’t simply put a bigger one inside without making the chassis thicker and heavier.

Would you be willing to trade the Air’s 12-hour battery for a sharp Retina screen?