Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
IT&Software | By Alfonso Woods

Apple Faces Class Action Lawsuit Over MacBooks with 'Butterfly Switch' Keyboard

Apple Faces Class Action Lawsuit Over MacBooks with 'Butterfly Switch' Keyboard

According to the complaint, people who bought the MacBook or MacBook Pro that came equipped with the butterfly keyboard have been facing a constant threat of non-responsive keys as well as keyboard failure. The idea was to create a better keyboard in Macs and something better than what you'd find on a Windows-based PC. The report claims that the design of the keyboard makes the keystrokes to go unregistered even with small amounts of dust or debris obstruct normal switch behaviour. The replacement L key failed.

AppleInsider says it collected its data from "assorted Apple Genius Bars in the U.S." that it has worked with for several years, as well as Apple-authorized third-party fix shops.

As described in the lawsuit, Apple replaced its "scissors" keyboard switch with a "butterfly" mechanism in 2015, and revised the design in 2016.

Specifically, the MacBook keyboards in question are the ones with a polarized butterfly design which supports Apple's MacBook and the 2016 MacBook Pro models.

The Butterfly switch was introduced in 2015, first on the 12-inch MacBook.

"The keyboard features our second-generation butterfly mechanism - providing four times more key stability than a traditional scissor mechanism, along with greater comfort and responsiveness", the company wrote on its website.

But some users - myself included - have reported that certain keys stop becoming responsive.

Claims to this effect have surfaced periodically over the past two years, sustained in part by the scoldings of well-regarded Apple developers and bloggers who characterize MacBook keyboards as shoddy. Rao purchased a MacBook Pro in January 2018, and only a month later the "B" key stopped working. Apple, though, refuses to recognize any design flaw; instead, it published a support document explaining how owners of notebooks with butterfly-mechanism keys could use compressed air to clean out dust from the keyboard. Instead of fixing the problems occuring in the keyboard, Apple suggests MacBook owners to try self-help voluntary remedies which will not result in a permanent fix. The lawsuit claims Apple selling these laptops knowing there to be an issue is "fraud by omission". He was later told it would cost more than $700 to fix.

Both the plaintiffs are seeking damages and legal fees from the company.

Apple has yet to officially respond to the lawsuit and they have also to acknowledge what could be the reason behind the flaw.

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