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ctwallin

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2020
4
0
Hello all,



This seems to be a widespread issue for a lot of people but I have few specific questions I haven't seen anywhere yet.



I have 2018 15 inch Macbook Pro with keyboard issues (it types double characters). An option I was given a the genius bar was to have it repaired through the replacement program but apparently they can't guarantee the replacement part will be any better. It may in fact be the same defective design that this one had. Does anyone know if it would be possible to put a new, scissor-style keyboard in instead? The 2019 models apparently went back to those.



I find the solution they are offering (the free replacement) to not be good enough if they are putting in a keyboard with the same design flaw. They also can't just replace the keyboard without switching on the whole top plate with the battery, speakers, etc... I was told it would cost about $800 to fix once the program is expired (I have 2 more years). Mine failed in a year so it's seems likely to happen again. Plus, that's $800 for a keyboard issue! I already spent too much money on this particular build to have to worry about the keyboard failing again.



When I bought this (2018), Apple had said they revamped the keys with mesh so I naively assumed they fixed the problem. They clearly know that this a product flaw and yet still sell these things for thousands of dollars with no real solution. Then they make it impossible to fix without spending another several hundred bucks. It seems like this shouldn't be allowed.



This failed on me within a year of buying it but I wasn't able to have it repaired until now. I am a teacher and video editor so I hadn't previously been able to go without it for a week since I used it for work. Then the quarantine hit and I had to teach online (plus the Apple stores were closed). But now, I was finally able to take it into the store but am finding their solution entirely insufficient. Does anyone have suggestions? Can they put a 2019 keyboard in? Can I escalate this? Can I get my money back? What recourses do I have?



The other option they gave me was to trade this one in and spend an extra $1500 for the newest 2019 model (for the build that has similar specs as mine). This is also a bonkers suggestion. Like I mentioned, I already spent too much money on this one to have to shell out another $1500 for a reliable keyboard. If they wanted to do something closure to a flat swap, that would seem a little more reasonable.



Honestly, I would be happy if they just put a keyboard in that worked and didn't have the same design flaw but that doesn't appear to be an option, which is utterly frustrating. Has anyone else had their keyboards replaced through this program and had any luck/longevity? Is there any way to know if the part they put in is new or updated? I was told at the store they had no way of knowing if the part would be a newer, non-flawed version since it had the same part number, which I also find strange.



Ultimately, I feel like a bit like a fool for purchasing this computer but I'm certainly learning to be more conscious of the products I buy and who I buy them from. I know this long, ramble of a rant has a lot of parts/questions to it, but any advice or information would be helpful.



Thanks

**I forgot to mention that I've had a keyboard cover on it to keep the dust out, but the worker at Apple said that that too could be an issue since the keys don't have a chance to vent. So, dust and debris can cause problems AND protecting against dust and debris can cause problems.
 
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WildSky

Contributor
Apr 16, 2020
3,358
3,113
East of the sun, west of the moon
The keyboard service program is to replace your butterfly keyboard with a replacement butterfly keyboard. That's it.

The only 2019 models that have the scissor keyboard are the 16" MBPs, not the 15" that you have. Even if it was the same size, the scissor keyboard cannot be installed on your 15" MBP because the underlying hardware can't accommodate it.
 
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ctwallin

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2020
4
0
The keyboard replacement program is to replace your butterfly keyboard with a replacement butterfly keyboard. That's it.

The only 2019 models that have the scissor keyboard are the 16" MBPs, not the 15" that you have. Even if it was the same size, the scissor keyboard cannot be installed on your 15" MBP because the underlying hardware can't accommodate it.


I figured they'd be incompatible. Thanks for the information. I suppose I'll have to escalate this issue somehow.
 
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1rottenapple

macrumors 68040
Apr 21, 2004
3,716
1,823
Sorry I skimmed the post so this may have been answered but did you get this replaced under warranty? If so sell the Mac. That what I did. I have a 2017 and had one year left on the Keyboard warranty. I sold mine for 800. Originally new for
1100 bought three years ago so not bad.
 
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pictonic

macrumors newbie
Oct 26, 2013
15
3
England
Have you considered a separate keyboard? I have a MBP 13 (2017) with a dead keyboard (not even the power on key) due to spill. 'Unrepairable' according to Apple, 'very difficult and expensive job' from local Mac repairer. So I've used a small bluetooth Apple keyboard over the top of MBP keyboard. Works well, but unconventional. Laptop keyboards are really vulnerable, but not made to be serviced. A weak design point.
 
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Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
21,749
7,960
OP:

Apple has a FREE keyboard replacement program (for up to 4 years from first purchase).

You qualify for this.
If you can't take it personally to an Apple Store, Apple Support will arrange to send you a prepaid shipping box for the return. Turnaround is often within 5-7 days, but this can vary.

You get an entire new "top case" for the computer... keyboard, battery, etc.

This is really YOUR ONLY OPTION.
Of course Apple can't "guarantee" that the new keyboard won't "go bad" as did the first one, because it's the same part as the old (failed) one.
THERE IS NOTHING ELSE THAT WILL FIX THIS. Get that through your head, and go forward.

If you want a keyboard that won't break, get a new Apple 16" or 13" MacBook Pro.
 
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Northern Man

Suspended
Aug 25, 2013
2,054
3,195
OP:

Apple has a FREE keyboard replacement program (for up to 4 years from first purchase).

You qualify for this.
If you can't take it personally to an Apple Store, Apple Support will arrange to send you a prepaid shipping box for the return. Turnaround is often within 5-7 days, but this can vary.

You get an entire new "top case" for the computer... keyboard, battery, etc.

This is really YOUR ONLY OPTION.
Of course Apple can't "guarantee" that the new keyboard won't "go bad" as did the first one, because it's the same part as the old (failed) one.
THERE IS NOTHING ELSE THAT WILL FIX THIS. Get that through your head, and go forward.

If you want a keyboard that won't break, get a new Apple 16" or 13" MacBook Pro.
Good advice except your last sentence: "If you want a keyboard that won't break, get a new Apple 16" or 13" MacBook Pro." This sentence could have read "If you want a keyboard that won't break, get a new Apple 16" or 13" MacBook Pro or a non-Apple product" ;)
 
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ctwallin

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2020
4
0
OP:

Apple has a FREE keyboard replacement program (for up to 4 years from first purchase).

You qualify for this.
If you can't take it personally to an Apple Store, Apple Support will arrange to send you a prepaid shipping box for the return. Turnaround is often within 5-7 days, but this can vary.

You get an entire new "top case" for the computer... keyboard, battery, etc.

This is really YOUR ONLY OPTION.
Of course Apple can't "guarantee" that the new keyboard won't "go bad" as did the first one, because it's the same part as the old (failed) one.
THERE IS NOTHING ELSE THAT WILL FIX THIS. Get that through your head, and go forward.

If you want a keyboard that won't break, get a new Apple 16" or 13" MacBook Pro.


Why respond to a post if you're not adding new insight to what I already stated? "Get that through your head..."
It's not my only option, I can try to get the swap amount lowered or seek legal action as I find this to be highly unethical. They are knowingly selling faulty parts.
 
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Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
21,749
7,960
OP wrote:
"It's not my only option, I can try to get the swap amount lowered or seek legal action as I find this to be highly unethical. They are knowingly selling faulty parts."

Knock yourself out then.
Apple is offering you a free fix.
If you don't want to take it, it's up to you.

And remember, if you DON'T take the "free fix", after the 4 year timeline runs out on you (which it will soon), it's going to cost you at least $750 to get the keyboard fixed...
 
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ctwallin

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 5, 2020
4
0
OP wrote:
"It's not my only option, I can try to get the swap amount lowered or seek legal action as I find this to be highly unethical. They are knowingly selling faulty parts."

Knock yourself out then.
Apple is offering you a free fix.
If you don't want to take it, it's up to you.

And remember, if you DON'T take the "free fix", after the 4 year timeline runs out on you (which it will soon), it's going to cost you at least $750 to get the keyboard fixed...

I feel like you didn't really read my original post. I am aware of all of this.
 
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lixuelai

macrumors 6502a
Oct 29, 2008
874
256
Honestly you can look at this as a positive. You get a free battery in 2 years. I suggest you just go with the replacement for now and see how long it lasts. For what its worth I've had a 2016 butterfly with no issues for 4 years.
 
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applegeek25

macrumors regular
Jun 6, 2010
113
2
Toronto, ON
I do sympathize with the OP. My 2017 15" MBP is on its 3rd keyboard replacement. I just purchased a fully spec'd 16" MBP and I can tell you that the keyboard is like night and day. I'm just hoping I'll be able to sell the 2017 model for at least a decent price on eBay.
 
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Natzoo

macrumors 68000
Sep 16, 2014
1,633
375
And remember, if you DON'T take the "free fix", after the 4 year timeline runs out on you (which it will soon), it's going to cost you at least $750 to get the keyboard fixed...
You do realize that they are replacing the same defective keyboard with the same keyboard. Then telling their customers to f*** off after 4 years.
 
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icanhazmac

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2018
640
1,997
You do realize that they are replacing the same defective keyboard with the same keyboard. Then telling their customers to f*** off after 4 years.

Yup, 3 replacements on mine and have 1 year left on the program. Frustrating but what are the options? As the OP states you can try to get them to trade it out, I can only vaguely recall reading one instance of a person getting a 16" after their butterfly kb model required 4 or 5 replacements and of course the old "legal action" route, have fun with that, I'm no lawyer and I don't want to spend 100k to try and get a 3k laptop replaced.
 
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lobo1978

macrumors 6502
Sep 22, 2011
393
258
I have benefited from Apple keyboard replacement programme. I am more than happy at this point.
On the other hand, currently Apple acknowledges butterfly keyboard issues and only cover only 4 years since purchase which is not fair.
On the flip side, there are so many users steaming over a fact that there is a defect product, I do not think Apple can get away with it, without major class action suit when programme expires.

My take is: Apple cares about its customers and I expect they will extend replacement programme until model is obsolete.

P.S. One good option for OP to escalate is to initiate class action suit against Apple over limited keyboard replacement programme coverage. Many will follow.
 
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