The new MacBooks Pro have been released, but a big question hangs in the air: did the third generation of the butterfly keyboard come with just improvements for quieter typing or did Apple fix their problem? In case you didn’t know, Apple recently announced a repair program for keyboards with a butterfly mechanism that exhibit the following behavior: letters or characters that repeat themselves unexpectedly; letters or characters that do not appear; keys with a “sticky” feeling or without responding in a consistent manner.
To our frustration, Apple declared to the CNET, to The Verge and to other vehicles that the new professional notebook keyboard does not have new engineering or improvements to correct the problems described above. But it’s not like that, at least according to the iFixit – who has already tried to get his hands on the new computer and evaluate its most controversial component.
According to the repair firm, Apple has silently fixed (without touching the subject) keyboard reliability issues. Like? Basically encapsulating the butterfly mechanism of each key with a silicone barrier, in order to protect it against the entry of dirt.
For them, this flexible housing is, rather, a measure that aims to “cover up the mechanism of microscopic dust attacks”. Apple even has a patent that covers just that.
Although for the people of iFixit this clearly represents a correction to the problems faced by Apple in the first two generations of keyboards with butterfly mechanism, they made sure to leave the doubt in the air since, as we highlighted, Apple declared to several vehicles that this new keyboard was not designed to solve such problems.
Does this Apple position make sense? Launching a new keyboard that does not fix a responsible problem that sparked several lawsuits against Apple and culminated in a recall? Do not do. On the other hand, Apple can’t just say that it fixed everything with the launch of this new keyboard since, in a way, it would be assuming that * all * the first and second generation keyboards with butterfly mechanism (which are still for sale, say) are defective – in the recall, Apple claims that a “small percentage” of some MacBook and MacBooks Pro models may have the problem.
While completing the disassembly of the new MacBook Pro, iFixit promised to test whether this new mechanism is even dirt-proof; stay connected.
Apple confirmed to me that MacBook Pros returned with broken keyboards are being recycled, not repaired or refurbished. https://t.co/3PZNixkkdk
– Jason Koebler (@jason_koebler) July 13, 2018
In a related note, Apple confirmed to Jason Koeble (editor in chief of Motherboard) that MacBooks Pro returned with keyboard problems are being recycled – that is, Apple * is * not repairing or reusing the machines and putting them back on the market as refurbished products (refurbished).