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More than a year and a half after some MacBook owners began vociferously complaining about broken MacBook keyboards, Apple is making what it says is a material change in the keyboards in its high-end MacBook Pro laptops. It will also extend its keyboard repair program, in a bid to appease Apple laptop owners who have been frustrated by stuck or double-typing keys.
Apple’s newest MacBook Pros, which are being announced today and include significant bumps in power and performance, are still using Apple’s third-generation “butterfly” keyboard. But the company says these keyboards have a change in the physical material that exists within the butterfly mechanism that will address some of the issues that MacBook users have been experiencing. The company declined to say exactly what the material change was. Last year, Apple updated its MacBook Pros and MacBooks to include a silicone membrane under the keys, which was largely perceived as an effort to prevent dust and debris from making the keyboard unusable.
The company is also changing its keyboard repair program, which it first announced in June of 2018. Previously the repair program would cover 13- and 15-inch MacBook Pro laptops going back to 2017, and the 12-inch MacBook going back to early 2015 models. And it only applied to customers who were out of a warranty period. Now it will cover repairs of keyboards on Macs that have been purchased within the past four years, regardless of warranty status. Basically, it will include all keyboards that use Apple’s butterfly mechanism. This also includes MacBook Air keyboards.
The company claims it has sped up the repair times, too, though it declined to give a promised length of repair time or say how it has changed its repair processes.
The keyboard changes are almost certainly the biggest news around these new 2019 MacBooks, since keyboards are an essential part of, well, using a laptop. Apple has maintained that the vast majority of MacBook customers have had positive experiences, but the faulty keyboards have been a black eye for Apple’s iconic product line.
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