I was thinking [about netbooks recently]() as well as a [portable device for developers]() and I was fondly recalling my beloved 11” MacBook Air I had about 10 years ago. That thing was fantastic. The display was short but wide, so it was excellent for meetings since you could easily look over the top of the screen. Battery life was good (for the time) and I never felt like I needed more ports. In my rose colored recollection, the 11” was tiny, but I wondered how that actually compared to Apple’s smallest notebook today.

Here’s the overlay with the 13” M series MBA in green and the vaunted 11” in red. There’s not that much difference! The 13” is ~0.8 inches deeper and only about 0.2 inches wider. The 11” had the classic Air wedge shape and was actually about 50% thicker than the 13” at the butt end.

Intel MacBook Air 11 inch vs M1 MacBook Air 13 inch.  The 13" is less than an inch deeper and only a hair wider than the old 11".

Looking at the 11”, you can see how much space it had to cede to bezels, which have all but disappeared in today’s MBA. The display has gone high res too. The screen resolution has essentially doubled in both directions going from just over one megapixel of screen real estate to well over four megapixels.

11" Macbook Air

So Apple’s smallest laptop is still pretty small! The 13” moniker fooled me into thinking it was bigger, but those disappearing bezels have let the physical dimensions of the machine shrink down to just a tad bigger than the display. I bet I can even still see over the screen in a meeting.