Apple Must Offer Full MacBook Exchanges - Immediately
May 9, 2020 —
Now that Apple has replaced all of its MacBook butterfly keyboards with redesigned scissor switch keyboards, including the 13” MacBook Pro and Air, Apple should start a program to offer a full replacement machine for anyone who currently owns a MacBook equipped with a butterfly. It should be simple: contact Apple to make arrangements, back up your data, send in/bring in your MacBook with butterfly, and receive an exchange MacBook with scissor switch keyboard.
To be fair, the replacement machine would be of similar RAM and storage. Apple could, optionally, offer a way for owners to pay extra to upgrade to a better version, e.g. if they want to increase RAM and storage. Since Apple has discontinued the 12” MacBook, a 13” MacBook Air should be provided for owners of that machine.
This program is necessary because Apple’s current keyboard service program is a fraud, and I do not use that term lightly. As this petition has reported for quite some time, countless MacBook users have suffered through two, three, four, even five replacements that keep failing. Replacing one flawed butterfly keyboard with another flawed butterfly keyboard is a path to failure. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
For those who wonder if the most recent iterations of the butterfly keyboard are less likely to fail, and thus somehow less meritorious of replacement, I can simply point to numerous reports such as John Siracusa (@siracusa) relaying on Accidental Tech Podcast that his 2018 MacBook Air with butterfly developed the usual problems. It is this petition’s stance that all MacBooks with butterfly keyboard, regardless of date of manufacture, must be part of the machine replacement program.
If it were possible for Apple to insert the new Magic Keyboard with scissor switches into the old MacBooks, that would be a valid solution for all of the machines except the 12” MacBooks. However, it is my understanding that this is technically impossible. Thus, full machine replacement is the only option.
Given Apple’s absolute silence in the face of this petition to date, I wonder if Apple wants us all to give up on waiting for justice and fairness, and just buy new scissor switch-equipped machines. Corporate malfeasance does not deserve to be rewarded. Apple could restore goodwill with us by instituting the replacement program so we are not forced to be pay full price––twice!––for one working MacBook.
This petition is unlikely to be updated again anytime soon, until and unless a major development occurs such as a resolution of the pending class action lawsuit, which could take quite some time, or if Apple responds to this petition. You will be the first to know if Apple does the right thing.
P.S. - Apple continues to sell butterfly-equipped MacBooks in the refurbished area of its online store, and its authorized retailers continue to sell these older models. That’s a shame, and should be a scandal. Apple should recall all of them, immediately. Apple’s advertising and sales of these products over the past four years, during which it knew full well of the fatal keyboard flaws, is a deep stain on the honor, integrity, and reputation of the company, which I hope Apple will begin to remedy.
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