Petition update

Apple Should Offer MacBook with Scissor Keyboard for Free to Owners of Defective Butterfly Keyboards

Matthew Taylor
San Francisco, CA, United States

Nov 17, 2019 — 

Apple just launched a new 16” MacBook Pro equipped with a new scissor-switch keyboard based on the external iMac Magic Keyboard. Nice! This thoughtful design seems unlikely to suffer from the butterfly keyboard’s catastrophic reliability problems that spawned our petition.

In order to address the ongoing and unresolvable issues with the existing butterfly keyboards, Apple must:

1) Offer a full refund to anyone who has purchased a MacBook / MacBook Air / MacBook Pro with a butterfly keyboard;

OR (at the choice of the consumer)

2) Offer a no-charge replacement MacBook / MacBook Air / MacBook Pro equipped with one of these new scissor-switch Magic Keyboards.

David Heinemeier Hansson, creator of Ruby on Rails and Cofounder of BaseCamp, says much the same, must-read thread:

Apple’s current Keyboard Service Program is untenable, because it involves replacing one defective keyboard with another defective keyboard. Many signatories to this petition have complained about having to bring in their machines two, three, four, even five times, and still the butterfly keyboards eventually fail. Not only does this fail to solve the problem, it forces creative professionals who rely on their machines to lose time and money while the laptops are in for service. Apple should no longer sell any MacBooks with butterfly keyboards, nor provide them as part of a “service program.”

If Apple could insert the new scissor-switch keyboard into existing butterfly-equipped machines, that would be great. However, it is my understanding that this is technically impossible given the tolerances within the case design. (Someone post a comment here if I’m wrong about that.) Thus, full refund or full machine replacement would appear to be the only viable options that would address Apple’s obligation to its consumers to sell and stand behind products that work reliably.

While it is great news that Apple has developed a scissor switch keyboard, no one who purchased a multi-thousand-dollar MacBook should be forced to buy a brand new one solely to obtain a reliable keyboard that should have come with their machine in the first place. Such is the implication until and unless Apple provides the remedy this petition advocates.

Apple, obviously, doesn’t yet have versions of its 13” MacBook Pro, 13" MacBook Air, or 12” MacBook with scissor switch mechanisms, either to sell or to provide as replacements. Let’s hope that day arrives soon!

16” MacBook Pro coverage:

Kevin Purdy with iFixit:

Marco Arment:

John Gruber, Daring Fireball:

A Reminder - The Butterfly Keyboard Fiasco is Worse than Apple Admits:

A Further Reminder - Why the Existing Keyboard Service Program Won’t Fix Your MacBook:

Apple’s Untenable Keyboard Service Program:

Keep fighting for people power!

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