After receiving thousands of complaints about the faulty butterfly keyboard on MacBook and MacBook pro laptops, Apple has finally recognized its mistake and is offering customers free repairing service for issues related to the keyboard’s flawed design.
Flawed Butterfly Keyboard
Apple has been facing a lot of criticism from upset fans over a keyboard design flaw in its MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops. After months of negative publicity and horror stories from users about tremendous repairing costs, Apple has done something unusual: it accepted the embarrassing flaw in its MacBook machines and explained that the problem stemmed from the butterfly keyboard design which made it easy for dust to get underneath the keys, leading to a host of typing issues.
The faulty butterfly keyboard, which was introduced in 2015 in order to help the company achieve a thinner laptop design, had a much narrower input mechanism than any of the previous MacBook keyboards. However, the butterfly keyboard had a major flaw which made its failure rate much higher than any of the older models. Dissatisfied customers revealed that getting the laptop keyboard repaired at an Apple Store could cost at least $700 if the machine was no longer in warranty.
On Friday, Apple announced on its website that MacBook owners no longer had to make a huge dent in their pockets to get their keyboard fixed. Although the announcement doesn’t mean that the keyboards will no longer be compromised by specs of dust, it does relieve users from the burden of paying for the fix. Only those who have a MacBook or MacBook Pro purchased within the last four years are eligible for free repair.
A Wide-Spread Problem
Apple’s keyboard issues first began to surface last October when The Outline voiced its criticism in a well-documented report revealing the number of complaints it had received from dissatisfied customers ever since the butterfly keyboard’s launch. The most recent models of the MacBook have showed sudden key failure without an apparent cause, stirring several high-class action lawsuits against the manufacturing firm.
Apple explains that the problem isn’t a manufacturing glitch in just a few units, it is an inherent flaw in all of the MacBook machines due to the butterfly keyboard’s design which allows dust to get inside and stick to the keys. As a result, the keys stop working and there is no way get the debris out without getting the keyboard repaired at an Apple repair center. The problem became so widespread that over 30,000 people signed an online petition demanding Apple to replace keyboards in all of its latest MacBook models.
But the computer manufacturer has been plagued with other hardware flaws ever since the 2016 MacBook Pro redesign. Last year, the company confirmed that there was a critical flaw within the main logic board and solid state drives (SSD) of the new MacBook pro units which could cause a massive functional failure in the device. Apple said that it would provide free repairs for faulty laptops, even those that aren’t in warranty.
Apple Offers Free Repair Service
In a recent statement, Apple announced the launch of its keyboard service program that only covers a small percentage of faulty MacBook and MacBook Pro machines which exhibit specific type of behavior related to the flawed keyboard design.
This may include repetition of a character or letter upon pressing a key, sticky keys that don’t respond when pressed or need to be pressed harder to make the characters appear. The device’s eligibility for free repair will be determined by Apple Authorized Service Provider and could result in the replacement of the affected keys – or in some cases, the entire keyboard.
According to the announcement, Apple is extending its free repair service to 9 different MacBook models starting from 2015’s Retina MacBook to the latest versions available on the market. Customers who have paid for keyboard repairs in the past can also avail a refund by presenting the receipt at the closest Apple Authorized Service Provider.
Although the repair program doesn’t provide a long-term solution for the faulty butterfly keyboard, it does give MacBook owners some peace of mind until Apple announces a new keyboard design for its future laptops.
Apple’s hardware flaws aren’t limited to computers. In the past, the company has been grappled by scandals including weak signals in iPhone 4 which resulted in customers getting free bumper cases to negate the problem. Apple was also accused of deliberately slowing down iPhones to protect battery life, after which it offered all older iPhone users discounted battery replacements.