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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Alongside the launch of new MacBook Pro models, Apple today introduced a new Backlight Service Program for the 13-inch MacBook Pro.

According to Apple, a "very small percentage" of 2016 13-inch MacBook Pro displays can exhibit vertical bright areas along the bottom of the screen or a backlight that malfunctions entirely.


Apple will repair affected devices, which includes machines sold between October 2016 and February 2018, for free. Eligible models are listed below:
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
No other MacBook Pro models are included in the repair program at this time.

There have been ongoing complaints from MacBook Pro owners about uneven backlighting, though reports have covered machines beyond the 13-inch 2016 MacBook Pro. There has been speculation that the problem is caused by a delicate and easy-to-break flex cable.

Apple says that those with affected machines should find an Apple Authorized Service Provider, make an appointment at an Apple Retail Store, or contact Apple Support to arrange a mail-in repair.

The Backlight Service Program will be available to MacBook Pro owners for four years after the first retail sale of the unit, or two years from May 21, 2019, whichever is longer. According to internal Apple repair documents, displays with a confirmed backlight issue are eligible for LCD replacement at no charge, including displays that have accidental damage.

Article Link: Apple Launches New Backlight Service Program for 2016 13-Inch MacBook Pro Display to Address 'Flexgate' Issues
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macrumors newbie
May 21, 2019
4 weeks ago I closed my computer, reopened it and no backlight. The screen was on but went dim and so did the keyboard back light. Out of warranty and cost me $500. Any idea of this is what’s being covered?


macrumors member
May 5, 2019
Yes!!!!!!!!! Let me set up an appointment.

How long does it take for apple to complete a display change? I may have to wait until next week.
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macrumors P6
Oct 1, 2007
wooo, flexgate covered until May 2021 for my 2016 nTB (since 2 years from May 2019 exceed +4 years from original date of purchase, by about 6 months)

Finally Apple doing something right, even if it was for lawsuit mitigation / they dragged their feet in acknowledging it


macrumors member
Jul 23, 2002
Dallas, TX
2017 15" model here....

Last week i noticed what appeared to be the stage lighting issue. I closed my lid, went to lunch, and when I returned, no backlight. The warranty ran out on my computer about 3 months ago. So I call Apple tech support, they take some information and eventually refer me to a local Apple store. I take it in, they take a look and tell me that the repair was going to be almost $800. I politely argued that this issue is affecting a larger population than they are acknowledging and ended up arguing my case to the store manager. I had lots of evidence that this issue is a wider issue than just the occasional failure and in the end the manager agreed to have it repaired at Apple's expense.

I'm extremely grateful for the manager and technician at the store level taking pity on me and helping me out. I'm furious with Apple for continually releasing substandard products and treating it's loyal consumers like they are crazy when they complain about hardware failures. I shouldn't have had to argue my case as strongly as I did for an issue that they clearly are aware of.
Why not 2016 15inch models??
and 2017 models as well. And I'm hearing some anecdotal evidence that the 2018s are also having this issue. Sometimes the quest for thinner/lighter laptops trumps functionality.
4 weeks ago I closed my computer, reopened it and no backlight. The screen was on but went dim and so did the keyboard back light. Out of warranty and cost me $500. Any idea of this is what’s being covered?
If I were you, I'd go back to the Apple store and lobby for a refund.


macrumors newbie
Jul 8, 2014
So the issue of bluish stained displays with 2016 15" Pros will continue to be ignored... :/ I already had it changed once along my keyboard back in 2016 and it's now back on the replacement screen.


macrumors 68020
Feb 13, 2005
I've already had one screen replaced under Applecare for my 15" 2016 macbook pro. The new screen is already failing after a year, in exactly the same way - so I'll be taking it back again. Of course, next year Applecare runs out...

i wonder if they're going to fix this with the exact same part. which means the issue is bound to occur again.

Exactly!!! Is Apple repairing the problem by using longer flex cables or are they simply replacing a failed part with the same part which will eventually fail again in the same manner?
View attachment 838305 That’s some great news!!! I thought I would have to keep my MB Pro ‘16 for a while until it would be resolved.

Thanks for the pic.... That is awful.


macrumors 603
Apr 8, 2009
Sorry you have a very different issue ;-} The T-CON board is failing on yours. Still need a new display.

He could probably just open and close the lid for a couple of hours and cause the flexgate issue and voila! Free replacement.


macrumors G4
Oct 24, 2014
It's too blatantly obvious of a design defect to weasel out of by blaming the customer. What people want to know is how does this even pass the prototype stage? Even if it's blamed on an intern it wouldn't pass peer review unless everyone is high on crack. The only other reasonable explanations are it was purposely designed for early obsolescence to milk high repair fees or force early upgrade purchases.
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