The new 12″ Retina display-equipped MacBook Air is heavy on new innovative features, but noticeably light on ports. In fact, only one port (outside of the headphone jack) for external devices exists on the new machine—a new USB-C connector. This connector will take care of all duties when it comes to external connections. It will handle the power adapter, it will handle USB, and it’ll even do the heavy lifting for external video like HDMI and VGA.
As you might expect, the MacBook doesn’t come bundled with any adapters outside of the power cable. Here’s a look at some of the adapter accessories that will be available when the MacBook launches on April 10th.
USB-C to USB Adapter
This $19.00 adapter will allow you to connect iOS devices as well as any other standard USB accessory to your MacBook. It is a USB 3.1 adapter, and hence, supports the moderately fast USB 3.0 speeds. It’s basically like a USB port on a current-gen MacBook, except it’s external and connected via a cable to the body of the machine.
From there, I would think that you’d be able to connect a USB hub of some sort to the cable for hooking up multiple peripherals simultaneously, but at this point that’s just speculation.
USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter
This $79.00 adapter features three different inputs—USB, HDMI, and an additional USB-C connection for connecting a charging cable. This adapter is what you will need if you want to connect your MacBook to an HDTV.
USB-C VGA Multiport Adapter
Lastly, we have the VGA adapter. This adapter is similar to the digital adapter, except it replaces replaces the HDMI connection with a VGA connection. It, too, is $79.00.
As of now, none of these adapters are available, but that should change to coincide with the launch of the MacBook on April 10. What do you think about the idea of needing an adapter for such simple functions as USB connectivity or HDMI output? Do you agree with Apple’s radical decision to eschew all such ports in the name of saving power and space?