This is the new $999 MacBook Air, powered by Apple silicon

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It’s official. The first MacBook to sport Apple’s own silicon is here. The perennial favorite thin and light is on the way, featuring the company’s new M1 chip — it’s first desktop CPU built in-house. The system looks to be largely identical to the last several generations of Air, with most of the big changes happening under the hood.

Per Apple’s numbers, the system should be 3.5x faster than earlier models and faster than 98% of the PC laptops sold in the last year. Even more notable, the new ARM-based chip means it can operate without a fan. The company has long claimed that battery efficiency is one of the biggest benefits to its new chip, and that certainly seems to be came here, with a claimed 15 hours of web browsing and 18 hours of video playback on a charge. Huge if true, and a big bump from the 12 hour claims for earlier models.

There’s no TouchBar here — which, fine. But the best part of the setup — TouchID — is present, which it also was in the latest Intel Air.