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Apple keyboard defect

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Apple to pay up to $395 to those affected by butterfly keyboard defect

Apple introduced the keyboard with butterfly buttons in 2015 on its 12-inch MacBooks, although it did not last long without criticism. This keyboard mechanism patented by Apple received a class action lawsuit complaining about its multiple defects. It had erroneous keystrokes or a too short keystroke. Now, Apple has decided to pay $50 million for the lawsuit and those affected by the keyboard will receive compensation of up to $395.

Although Apple boasted of a new type of push button patented by them, and exclusive to their laptops, with which they wanted to differentiate themselves from the competition, it ended up being a failure and a headache for its users. It used a hinge that, according to Apple, “was like the wings of a butterfly”, and offered a better typing experience and four times more stability on the keys. When push came to shove, if a little dust got into the keyboard, the keys no longer functioned properly, rendering their primary function meaningless.

The company has finally decided to pay the fine after a long time, since the butterfly keyboards stopped being manufactured in 2020. That said, Apple will shell out $50 million to pay part of the settlement. The customers will get between $50 and $395, depending on how many times they had to repair the keyboard. Thus, all those who had to have their keyboards repaired several times will be eligible for a higher compensation.

In fact, those who had to replace at least twice the top cover of their Apple laptop will receive the highest amount of money. In case it was only replaced once, they will receive an amount in between the proposed range. It may seem a bit excessive that when the keyboard failed and replaced with another one, it failed again, but the reality was like this. This “durable” butterfly keyboard was really very fragile and susceptible to failure, where a few specks of dust inside it practically triggered the catastrophe.

In addition, Apple bet on one of its strong points, which was to make the keyboard thinner than the rest of the laptops. Thus, its butterfly keyboard was 40% thinner than a traditional keyboard, which led to numerous complaints that the key movement was too short. Although Apple’s proprietary keyboard underwent several revisions and improvements, it never solved its problems, hence the lawsuit mentioned above.

Of that $50 million that Apple has to pay, 30% will go to attorneys’ fees and other expenses and there remains a total of $35 million to be divided among only those affected in various states in the U.S. Therefore, those eligible for Apple’s financial compensation must live in:

  • California
  • New York
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • New Jersey
  • Washington
  • Michigan

If you live in another U.S. state, you will not be eligible to receive any payment from Apple. Furthermore, even if you live in one of these places, have had your keyboard repaired several times, and receive the maximum $395, it will not be enough for a new MacBook. In fact, MacBook Airs with the Apple M2 chip have been criticized for costing $200 more than their Apple M1 version.

But hey, it’s always a good thing to receive compensation for a company mistake. Meanwhile, Apple learned from its mistakes and returned to the classic keyboard with scissor buttons that gives fewer problems.

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