The 2019 butterfly keyboard is still a joke

jamesgryffindor99

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 8, 2019
46
54
United States
After about 6 months of having this 2019 15" MBP (5th MBP since i first bought a 2018 15". Been replaced several times because the keyboard just won't stop failing with duplicate keypress issues!), my a key started duplicating. This isn't a dust issue btw, rather an issue with failing switches. On top of that, paint is chipping off the "I" and "Space" keycaps. This is my 8th keyboard failure. I use my MacBook a lot as it's my daily driver and I type often (programming, discord, etc). I'm getting yet another butterfly keyboard replacement next week, which will inevitably will fail between a few weeks and a few months. Maybe some day they'll finally throw in the towel and just replace it with a 16" with a real keyboard.


I will say this, however, that the 2019 keyboards definitely last longer than the 2018s, but it's still pathetic.
 

Macintosh101

macrumors regular
Nov 23, 2017
118
141
Well I owned my MacBook Pro 13" 2019 for just over a month before it started developing issues with multiple keys - they get stuck on one of the corners and wouldn't budge. I didn't eat near it, literally babied it... must have gotten unlucky. Just had top case (including keyboard) replaced under the keyboard replacement program - picking it up tomorrow.
 
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NewDawn00

macrumors newbie
Feb 19, 2020
4
0
Well I owned my MacBook Pro 13" 2019 for just over a month before it started developing issues with multiple keys - they get stuck on one of the corners and wouldn't budge. I didn't eat near it, literally babied it... must have gotten unlucky. Just had top case (including keyboard) replaced under the keyboard replacement program - picking it up tomorrow.
Hi, how has your keyboard been since you got it replaced?
 

seeforyourself

macrumors 6502
Dec 1, 2014
378
207
I had my ENTIRE 2017 15" MacBook Pro replaced with a brand new 16" inch because of 4 repairs. My boyfriend's '19 13" is having issues now too. Its out of warranty and covered under the keyboard replacement, but the usb c is loose too. Will the bottom case replace the loose ports as well?
 

ascender

macrumors 68040
Dec 8, 2005
3,209
1,145
And this is the "interesting" thing which has been mentioned a few times - the chances of a keyboard failing, particularly on the 2019 ones, must be somehow related to how the keyboard and laptop are used - in terms of how hard you hit the keys, how hot the laptop is running etc?
 

BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
5,397
6,756
California
And this is the "interesting" thing which has been mentioned a few times - the chances of a keyboard failing, particularly on the 2019 ones, must be somehow related to how the keyboard and laptop are used - in terms of how hard you hit the keys, how hot the laptop is running etc?
Been wondering this as well. My wife and I have 2017 MBP 13' TB models. We've had our laptops for two years - my wife uses hers a LOT more than I use mine (the keyboard that is). No issues here. But the TB Model has extra fans/exhaust and we're not doing insanely CPU heavy / heat heavy activities on it.

I have 2 other relatives with the butterfly and one of my sisters just started getting the repeating key issue on her 2019 MBA. But out of all the people we know with butterfly keyboards, I don't know of anyone else with issues.

My wife's A key is starting to wear off.

Having taken apart keyboards before, I know that heat can have a very detrimental effect on the silicon rubber cap that keys use to pop the key back up. Same if ANY of the small plastic parts are damaged in any way.

I definitely think it has to be related to heat, how hard the keys are hit, and any external debris going into the keyboard (much larger than dust). Other users have reported success crushing the key to get debris to be dislodged.

All in all, inexcusable for an expensive computing device. Glad there is a warranty but the fact that they have to do one is sad.

I still use my MBP every day (my wife too).
 

AustinIllini

macrumors demi-goddess
Oct 20, 2011
11,903
8,965
Austin, TX
I had my ENTIRE 2017 15" MacBook Pro replaced with a brand new 16" inch because of 4 repairs. My boyfriend's '19 13" is having issues now too. Its out of warranty and covered under the keyboard replacement, but the usb c is loose too. Will the bottom case replace the loose ports as well?
It's under warranty in all likelihood so you should have no problem listing both of those issues.
 

DiCaprioAngel

macrumors 6502
Jul 12, 2013
390
120
New York
So my sister has the 2017 Touch Bar 13” MBP and like ... 5 or 6 of her keyboards are completely coming off, she constantly has to place them back on. Now, she didn’t do anything to make them fall off at all, she just types like any normal person and over time, they popped off. Would Apple charge for this if I take it in to the Apple store? It’s out of warranty and doesn’t have Apple Care. I’m just curious before I go in and get charged for something if I shouldn’t have to.
 

SvenLorenz1975

Contributor
Sep 13, 2015
62
82
Germany
I've had a 2016 13" MBP for three years and now a 2019 13"MBP for about six months. Both were/are my only computers, both for work and private life with heavy daily use. Neither had a single problem with the keyboard. I'm probably going to keep my current machine for a long time, because I've been to a store and tried the keyboard on the 16" MBP and it's a clear step backwards.
 

Sanpete

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2016
2,596
1,053
Utah
Its more likely that the keyboard is flawed and defective then it being the OP's fault. Apple dropped the butterfly keyboard and returned back to the tried and true scissor type keyboard for a reason
Others with the same keyboard haven't had anything close to the failure rate the OP describes, so the OP is either harder on them than others or exceedingly unlucky, as I said.
 
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maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,665
33,521
Boston
Others with the same keyboard haven't had anything close to the failure rate the OP describes, so the OP is either harder on them than others or exceedingly unlucky, as I said.
Others have zero failure, some had multiple using that as an excuse to blame the owner doesn't really hold water imo. The fact remains that people have used keyboards for years w/o any failures and now with the butterfly mechanism they are dealing with failures.

To say it another way, we've had decades of the same keyboard mechanism that has worked, and now we're incurring failures, some multiple, what's the variable in this? Not the individual but the keyboard.
 

Erehy Dobon

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2018
984
925
No service
Apple has returned back to the scissors mechanism design in the latest 16" MacBook Pro (edit: and now the MacBook Air 2020).

That's stark evidence that Apple wordlessly admits that the butterfly design was flawed.

Moreover, Apple has instituted a keyboard replacement program for pretty much all MacBooks using the butterfly mechanism. That is another clue that Apple has acknowledged the poor design choice.
 
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sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,640
9,312
Prescott Valley, AZ
Apple has returned back to the scissors mechanism design in the latest 16" MacBook Pro.

That's stark evidence that Apple wordlessly admits that the butterfly design was flawed.

Moreover, Apple has instituted a keyboard replacement program for pretty much all MacBooks using the butterfly mechanism. That is another clue that Apple has acknowledged the poor design choice.
It was pretty obvious that the problem persists with the 2019 MacBooks with the butterfly mechanisms when Apple stated that these new models were also covered by the keyboard replacement program.

I know that there were some who said that Apple was doing this to instill customer confidence, but that goes counter to Apple’s behavior regarding the keyboard issue.

I’ve long suspected that Apple was contractually obligated to buy x million keyboards from the vendor and they were stuck. The keyboard replacement program helps them burn through that inventory. There are tax and accounting benefits to Apple for taking this approach rather than as a straight-up recall.
 

fokmik

macrumors 601
Oct 28, 2016
4,489
3,958
USA
Others have zero failure, some had multiple using that as an excuse to blame the owner doesn't really hold water imo. The fact remains that people have used keyboards for years w/o any failures and now with the butterfly mechanism they are dealing with failures.

To say it another way, we've had decades of the same keyboard mechanism that has worked, and now we're incurring failures, some multiple, what's the variable in this? Not the individual but the keyboard.
That user is just trolling and defending apple to the death
He makes same blind, no logic defending also in the others mac issues like cracking sound macbooks
 

Sanpete

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2016
2,596
1,053
Utah
Others have zero failure, some had multiple using that as an excuse to blame the owner doesn't really hold water imo. The fact remains that people have used keyboards for years w/o any failures and now with the butterfly mechanism they are dealing with failures.

To say it another way, we've had decades of the same keyboard mechanism that has worked, and now we're incurring failures, some multiple, what's the variable in this? Not the individual but the keyboard.
Again, and this shouldn't be so hard to follow, the failure rate for the OP is way, way above average. Again, this implies as a matter of plain logic that he's either harder on the keyboards or exceedingly unlucky. Whether the keyboard design is faulty or not has nothing to do with that inescapable logic.

I obviously didn't imply the OP was at fault. I very clearly and simply gave two possible explanations, one of which you've unaccountably ignored each time.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,665
33,521
Boston
I obviously didn't imply the OP was at fault. I very clearly and simply gave two possible explanations, one of which you've unaccountably ignored each time.
Yes, because its simply common sense, the op used other laptops no keyboard failure, he uses the MBP with the butterfly keyboard, keyboard failures. What's the difference? Regardless of how you slice it, you're blaming the OP, whereas I am stating that the keyboard is the cause.

Even if he's being "hard" on the keyboard, and the keyboard is failing, its still the keyboard's flawed design as people have been hard on keyboards and w/o such failure simply because other keyboards are not like the delicate butterfly mechanisms.
 

Sanpete

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2016
2,596
1,053
Utah
An attribution of possible bad luck isn't blame, no matter how you slice it. I've explained this very simple point as clearly as possible. It was clear from the start. Sorry some can't follow it.
 
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Old Muley

macrumors 6502a
Jan 6, 2009
754
183
Titletown USA
I had my ENTIRE 2017 15" MacBook Pro replaced with a brand new 16" inch because of 4 repairs. My boyfriend's '19 13" is having issues now too. Its out of warranty and covered under the keyboard replacement, but the usb c is loose too. Will the bottom case replace the loose ports as well?
I was in the same position. We had our '17 MBP fixed 3 times due to sticking keys and after the last repair, several keys again began sticking within weeks. I'm no where near tough on my laptop and since it's the home computer, it only gets used occasionally in the evening. We ended up trading it in on a 16" and I must say the keyboard inspires a lot more confidence.
 
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