2016-17 Macbook Pro keyboard recall

4 May 2018 07:38 | apple

Somebody started a petition asking Apple to recall the 2016 (and presumably
2017 since they're basically the same) macbook pros and fit them with a
keyboard "that works":


This is a rather absurd proposition.

I have a 2016 macbook pro escape and I'm currently on my 4th topcase because of
keyboard "failures" so if anyone should be calling for this it would be me.

However, I strongly suspect the machine didn't actually need a keyboard
replacement at all. Let me explain.

The first problem I had was a spongey key that wouldn't register when pressed. I
took it to the Apple store and one of their "geniuses" immediately diagnosed it
as a keyboard failure and booked it in for repair. No air duster was tried and I
didn't know about air dusting at the time so I just went along with it.

A total of three keyboard replacements and lots of media coverage later and now
I know more about this issue and have invested in a can of air duster. Apple
also now has a support page explaining how to clean the keyboard with an air


I've since had a number of similar issues with various keys that were immediately
solved with the air duster.

So I think the real issue here is that Apple's in-store technicians were simply
not adequately prepared for these scenarios, possibly because Apple didn't
encounter this during testing or perhaps because it happened so infrequently
that they just didn't think it was an issue.

Although at first I wasn't keen I now actually quite like typing on the
butterfly keyboard and having to keep an air duster handy isn't really much of
an inconvenience for me.

I can understand why people might try to demand that apple recall this product
and "fix the keyboard" but you need only pause for a brief moment to realise
how absurd this idea is.

For a start Apple takes *years* to develop every single one of their products.
Even if they did issue a recall today it would take months at the very best
and much more likely years for there to even be a chance of having a "fixed"
keyboard. When car manufacturers issue a recall they typically have a fixed
version of the design ready to go, that's clearly not the case here and in my
opinion not likely to ever be the case.

Any replacement keyboard part would have to be compatible with the existing
chassis design so it couldn't be anything other than a low-travel keyboard.
I think the nature of a low-travel keyboard with moving keys being used in
an environment where dust may be present is not something that even Apple
with its mastery of hardware design can fully solve.

Just get an air duster, it's really not that big a deal.