Apple declares last polycarbonate MacBook model obsolete

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Apple on Monday added a handful of MacBook models to a running list of "obsolete" and "vintage" hardware, including 2010's 13-inch MacBook, the last of the company's laptops to feature a polycarbonate outer shell.

Introduced in 2006 as an entry-level iBook replacement, the 13-inch MacBook was also the last of Apple's laptop offerings to make the shift from Power PC to Intel. Later revisions, like a redesign in 2009, benefitted from a modern unibody construction wrapped in a layer of Apple's then-vogue white or black polycarbonate material.

Apple pulled the 13-inch polycarbonate model from store shelves in 2011 as consumer tastes trended toward aluminum designs like the MacBook Pro and, later, MacBook Air. The laptop remained available to educational institutions until 2012.

According to an Apple support document covering legacy product support, the 2010 13-inch MacBook is now among those devices considered "vintage" in the U.S. and Turkey, and "obsolete" in the rest of the world. Devices that fall into the "vintage" category are excluded from ongoing support except in regions where strict repair laws preclude such prohibitions.

The change in support was spotted by MacRumors earlier today.

Other models declared obsolete on Monday include:

  • MacBook (13-inch, Mid 2010)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2009)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2.53GHz, Mid 2009)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Mid 2009)

Apple routinely obsoletes legacy devices as new hardware versions — or new products — take their place. In November, for example, the company announced a few 2009 and 2011 model year Macs, including 2011's 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pro variants, would no longer be supported due to their "vintage" status.