Who did a 180 after initially ‘loving’ their 2016-2018 MBP?

How many once said their 2016 - 2017 MBP was the ‘best’ and then got burned by the keyboard issue?

  • Not me, mine is still awesome

    Votes: 40 48.8%
  • Yep, I’m eating my words

    Votes: 12 14.6%
  • I avoided these models from the git-go

    Votes: 26 31.7%
  • I got the keyboard issues, but I still think its the best laptop ever

    Votes: 4 4.9%

  • Total voters
    82

BigBoy2018

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 23, 2018
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I remember seeing debates here in 2017 and 2018 when the first indications of the butterfly keyboard issues were bubbling up, and there seemed to be a LOT of people who had purchased 2016 - 2018 macbook pros stepping in to tell people the issue was overblown, and to quit bashing Apple, etc.

So my question is, were you one of those people, and if so, did you then get the keyboard issue and change your tune?

I know its hard to admit you were wrong, but I’m curious how many will come forward to admit their view of this generation of laptops did a 180 once the design flaw bit them personally.
 
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poorcody

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2013
721
538
Bought a pre-order 2016 15" MBP... has been my daily workhorse professionally and personally for 30+ months. Never had any keyboard issues, and like typing on it. Best computer I have ever had.

Your assertion that the keyboard issue is inevitable is wrong imo.
 
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BigBoy2018

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 23, 2018
818
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Bought a pre-order 2016 15" MBP... has been my daily workhorse professionally and personally for 30+ months. Never had any keyboard issues, and like typing on it. Best computer I have ever had.

Your assertion that the keyboard issue is inevitable is wrong imo.
Removed the word ‘inevitable’. Though I do have the feeling that its not a matter of ‘if’ but ‘when’. Its like back in the early 1980’s when people were still claiming that not all cases of HIV developed into full blown Aids. Given enough time, all eventually did ...

Your MBP is ‘infected’ with a design flaw, so I think its just a matter of time before the symptoms emerge.

Theres been no evidence brought forth by anyone whose looked into this, including iFixit, that the keyboards that are failing are different in any way whatsoever from keyboards that havent ‘yet’ failed. Given that, its logical to assume ALL butterfly laptops 2015-2018 are susceptible to having a problem at some point.
 
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LogicalApex

macrumors 6502
Nov 13, 2015
494
434
Ah another keyboard thread. I wonder what people will do once the 2016-2018 fade into the sunset?...

No one can say the keyboard in a 2016-2018 is guaranteed to fail because no one here has any clue exactly why they failures happen in the first place.

Some have failures and some don't. Apple has a repair program for those who do and we're all very much aware of the issue existing.

Your MBP is ‘infected’ with a design flaw, so I think its just a matter of time before the symptoms emerge.
Given enough time everything in every MBP will fail. These devices aren't manufactured to be here in 100 years plugging along...
 

poorcody

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2013
721
538
Your MBP is ‘infected’ with a design flaw, so I think its just a matter of time before the symptoms emerge.
Show me your evidence of this please.

Theres been no evidence brought forth by anyone whose looked into this, including iFixit, that the keyboards that are failing are different in any way whatsoever from keyboards that havent ‘yet’ failed. Given that, its logical to assume ALL butterfly laptops 2015-2018 are susceptible to having a problem at some point.
How many keyboards has iFixit taken apart? Three, four? This whole debate has been bereft of evidence.

At some point you have to look at the fact that if the failure rate was significant, Apple simply would have redesigned the keyboard instead of tweaking it. There have been, what, at least 10 million butterfly keyboards made? Replacing all of them would be far more expensive than redesigning it. But trying to tweak it to reduce the failure rate has been more economical to them. If there is one thing Apple is good at, it is making profit.
 

poorcody

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2013
721
538
Here's a helpful article giving you the rundown of the keyboard issues:
https://www.businessinsider.com/apple-butterfly-keyboard-macbook-issues-timeline-2019-4
That article is just a rehash of what everyone has been discussing in these and other forums for years. There is no statistically significant data. If the keyboard failure rate is 5%, everything in that article could be true. Remember a 5% failure rate could mean 500,000 - 1,000,000 keyboards (I don't know the actual sales figures). A lot of upset people.
 
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leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
9,961
4,550
Theres been no evidence brought forth by anyone whose looked into this, including iFixit, that the keyboards that are failing are different in any way whatsoever from keyboards that havent ‘yet’ failed. Given that, its logical to assume ALL butterfly laptops 2015-2018 are susceptible to having a problem at some point.
That is a very strange choice of words. Are you trying to say that a failed keyboard is in no way indistinguishable from a working one? That would be odd indeed...

There is little doubt that these keyboards experience higher failure rates. But I don’t think that your fatalistic interpretation is of any merit. Every keyboard ever made will fail eventually. This way of thinking is simply not helpful. It makes much more sense to look at it from the probability angle.

Prrsinally, I don’t care about this stuff at all. The probability of failure is low enough and it can be fixed within a two hour appointment and it will be under warranty. I don’t use computers that are out of warranty since I am not rich enough to afford something like this.
 

BigBoy2018

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Original poster
Oct 23, 2018
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That is a very strange choice of words. Are you trying to say that a failed keyboard is in no way indistinguishable from a working one? That would be odd indeed...

There is little doubt that these keyboards experience higher failure rates. But I don’t think that your fatalistic interpretation is of any merit. Every keyboard ever made will fail eventually. This way of thinking is simply not helpful. It makes much more sense to look at it from the probability angle.

Prrsinally, I don’t care about this stuff at all. The probability of failure is low enough and it can be fixed within a two hour appointment and it will be under warranty. I don’t use computers that are out of warranty since I am not rich enough to afford something like this.
All I was asking with this thread if theres anyone who once swore by these laptops who is now willing to admit they were wrong.
Early indications are that is not something many people are willing to do :)
 
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Queen6

macrumors 604
Ah another keyboard thread. I wonder what people will do once the 2016-2018 fade into the sunset?...

No one can say the keyboard in a 2016-2018 is guaranteed to fail because no one here has any clue exactly why they failures happen in the first place.

Some have failures and some don't. Apple has a repair program for those who do and we're all very much aware of the issue existing.



Given enough time everything in every MBP will fail. These devices aren't manufactured to be here in 100 years plugging along...
When Apple produces a notebook that will range to over $4k (for my spec) that's reliable and does not excessively throttle...

Q-6
 

poorcody

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2013
721
538
All I was asking with this thread if theres anyone who once swore by these laptops who is now willing to admit they were wrong.
Early indications are that is not something many people are willing to do :)
LOL. Doctor, heal thyself. :)
 

morze

macrumors newbie
Jun 17, 2019
26
16
Although a small sample, it's interesting to see that over 40% are avoiding the generation or have issues. That calls for some serious attention.

I'm holding out on this generation, not solely for the keyboard issue as my 2015 is great but video editing is straining. From the get go I was a bit disappointed about the ports and having to see my partner spend cash on multiple dongles. I don't think she's ever plugged in a USB-C device. At this moment I have 2 USB devices and HDMI directly plugged into my 2015 model.

No one can say the keyboard in a 2016-2018 is guaranteed to fail because no one here has any clue exactly why they failures happen in the first place.
I think that's part of the issue that makes users hesitant to upgrade. If Apple could pin point the issue and fix it like they have done with other issues, it wouldn't be a problem.

Given enough time everything in every MBP will fail. These devices aren't manufactured to be here in 100 years plugging along...
Indeed. But no one is looking for 100 year life. I'm looking for as long as I can stretch it before something other than lack of speed forces me to upgrade. Too expensive to upgrade regularly.
 
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Queen6

macrumors 604
Lack of usable ports, excessive throttling, and unreliability literally killed the MBP for many independent professionals. I can honestly say that I've never seen so many drop the platform, as there was literally no alternative. We had no other option...

The Windows notebooks albeit being far from perfect delivered performance, stability and in most cases reliability without any significant compromise in usability. If Apple was so set on USB C as a protocol, not an aid to a form factor why didn't Apple offer a certified desktop docking solution? It would have made a difference as opposed to leaving it to 3rd parties to get it right or wrong.

I only expect 2-3 years of professional use at most, equally I fully expect few if any issues. I for one depend on this hardware for my living. To be straight in my industry such antics would result in would result in termination as it's completely unacceptable to churn out such substandard work. Perspective; fours years in we may just have a keyboard that's as reliable as the last couple of decades afforded o_O however you want to dress it up, it's piss poor, shockingly and disappointingly so. As for ramming ever faster, hotter silicon into the same chassis :rolleyes: Thankfully Intel got it right with the mobile i9 for the 9th Gen, as Apple again has done next to nothing outside of common-sense optimisation and possibly changing the TIM.

I'm sorry it's simply infuriating, I don't want to see any of Apple's Exec's prancing about or procrastinating on a stage about a new "awesome" MBP. What I want is Apple's hardware and software speak for itself; solid, performant, reliable, not a joke or a Starbucks showpiece. MBP should be a class leader, with few if any compromises...

Professionals don't care about the cost as long as the value exists as they can make that back easily. Apple should offer entry level, mainstream and Prosumer/Professional notebooks not solely variations of the Air which is all it does currently...

Apple wants professional endorsement for $4K plus Pro oriented notebooks, Apple best stack up and deliver, knock off taking the piss with crap overly compromised, overpriced Ultrabooks...

Q-6
 
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c0ppo

macrumors 65816
Feb 11, 2013
1,392
2,587
At first, I hated touchbar and lack of ports. Still do. But I was more then OK with the keyboard.
After multiple fails of that keyboard, well, now I'm avoiding MBP like a plague. Why would I pay double the price for lack of ports, gimmicky touchbar and a keyboard that failed on me multiple times?
 

BigBoy2018

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 23, 2018
818
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Given enough time everything in every MBP will fail. These devices aren't manufactured to be here in 100 years plugging along...
So they design a flaw into a part of their laptop that had always been amazingly reliable and yet you still give Apple a pass, saying ‘everything breaks eventually’. Amazing.

You sir, are a CFO’s dream customer.

I can see the parody video now of apple customers like you: Apple designs a $2000 laptop with a top case made of hard chocolate, and after it melts in his car, the guy with the apple logo on his bumper shrugs and says ‘well, everything breaks eventually’
 
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LogicalApex

macrumors 6502
Nov 13, 2015
494
434
o they design a flaw into a part of their laptop that had always been amazingly reliable and yet you still give Apple a pass, saying ‘everything breaks eventually’. Amazing.
I'm not giving Apple anything...

This keyboard issue has been litigated to death on here. Whatever the state of the keyboard is on the 2016-2019 it is well understood by now. Apple has added a 4 year warranty for the KB issue so users don't need to buy extended warranties to deal with it.

No need to cry over spilled milk...
 

Mark Holmes

macrumors member
Sep 22, 2010
89
471
San Diego CA
I'm not giving Apple anything...

This keyboard issue has been litigated to death on here. Whatever the state of the keyboard is on the 2016-2019 it is well understood by now. Apple has added a 4 year warranty for the KB issue so users don't need to buy extended warranties to deal with it.

No need to cry over spilled milk...
Nope, they do not deserve a pass. 4 years? My 2012 MBP still runs perfectly but would be 3 years out of that coverage at this point. A non faulty keyboard design would not need this plan. Just eat crow and retire the damn butterfly keyboard, and move on Apple.
 
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cambookpro

macrumors 603
Feb 3, 2010
6,401
1,819
United Kingdom
I've had a top case replacement for keyboard issues. That was extremely annoying.

However, this is still the best laptop I've owned. The keyboard - when it works - is extremely nice to type on, and very quick. The Touch Bar has its uses; I do miss it when using an external keyboard and monitor, though I don't think it is a must-have.

I love USB-C, and the ability to charge from either side. I think the design from an aesthetics point of view is amazing, and the screen is so colourful and bright. I do wish I had bought the 16GB RAM version though, as newer software (Xcode...) is taking its toll a little.

The keyboard is the massive elephant in the room which makes it a hard computer to recommend to others, unless they want to deal with replacements and Genius Bar appointments. I'm really torn. I wouldn't say I've done a 180, more a 90: most of what I initially loved about it, I still love. It's worth noting that the laptop this replaced (15" 2011) was in for repair for the GPU for longer than this was in for the keyboard. I think people do look back on older models with rose-tinted glasses - they had their own share of problems.


(For what it's worth, we have three 13" MBPs in our household: a 2016 (mine), a 2017 and a 2018. Only mine has ever had keyboard issues.)
 

BigBoy2018

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Original poster
Oct 23, 2018
818
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So Ive is gone, and soon the asinine butterfly keyboard will be history too.
This will be remembered as the worst 4 years of Apple laptops ever imo.
 
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computerpro3

macrumors member
Aug 30, 2011
33
40
The only thing I do not like about this computer is the stupid T2 chip blocking me from running linux. As a result of this, I need to carry around two computers.
 

Hazmat401

macrumors regular
Dec 29, 2017
174
223
Delaware County, Pa
So Ive is gone, and soon the asinine butterfly keyboard will be history too.
This will be remembered as the worst 4 years of Apple laptops ever imo.
No... the 2011 GPU issue still sours a lot of people

In regards to the keyboard issues... A lot of the apple apologist (since the word fanboy is an infraction on this site)... especially on Macrumors said the same thing about the 2011 GPU issue... then when Apple came out with the recall... a lot of those people were silent...

Cant take those peoples opinion too seriously
 

BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
4,613
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Wife and I are going strong on our 2017 MBPs for 1 year and several months now --- wife uses hers every day for her PhD. I use mine as more of a clamshell with an external monitor so the keyboard doesn't get a ton of use. We've had 0 problems. We know of 0 people who have problems at university / family (who have butterfly keyboards). (Not saying there are no problems, but if it was 1/100th as prevalent as some would like us to believe, I would expect to see it by now).

So Ive is gone, and soon the asinine butterfly keyboard will be history too.
This will be remembered as the worst 4 years of Apple laptops ever imo.
It is a rumor from someone who has been wrong before. That said, if it is true, I look forward to it. Keyboards need to be one of the most rugged and reliable piece of a laptop, especially a $2,000+ laptop. Apart from Apple warrantying these keyboards (wish they had done more years for us AppleCare+ payers) out the wazoo, I believe it is time to leave the keyboard behind and invest in something new.
 

nexusrule

macrumors 6502
Aug 11, 2012
466
394
So Ive is gone, and soon the asinine butterfly keyboard will be history too.
This will be remembered as the worst 4 years of Apple laptops ever imo.
I think you should spend your time in a more meaningless and productive manner. Millions and millions of MacBook Pro with that keyboard has been sold and probably tens of thousands, or thousands, had the issue. If not millions, but only a few hundred of thousands of those MacBook Pro had broken, there would be indisputable proof all over the media and the internet 6 months after the first version was out, recallings and class action suits. Period.
 

bill-p

macrumors 68000
Jul 23, 2011
1,647
186
Well, I think it depends on how much you type on the keyboard.

I sincerely doubt a PhD will ever type and smash on all of the keys of the keyboard as evenly and consistently as, say... a Software Engineer.

In fact, I doubt any other profession aside from maybe IT will ever hit all of the keys as much as a Software Engineer does.

And here's my experience: I have had butterfly keys from 2015 to 2016 to 2017 and now 2018. I have had to fix/replace ALL of those computers.

NONE OF THEM have ever escaped a key getting stuck eventually. None. I still have receipts and Apple-booked appointments to show for it.

And that's across FIVE different devices.

So you tell me why this is an isolated case.

ALL of my Software Engineer friends in Silicon Valley have also had to at least do one keyboard replacement for the butterfly keys.

So I think most of this is just that people don't actually type on their keyboards enough to really turn it into an issue. As opposed to, say... folks like me who essentially rely on the keyboard to be perfect in order to function at their jobs. Even one key failing to register is detrimental to work.

Also it is WRONG to think that replacing the keyboard is more costly than a redesign. It's pretty simple: Apple has made millions of these keyboards, so they likely already have the millions ready for replacement. The manufacturing process is already in place to make more of the butterfly keys, and only small tweaks can be made to not break the whole process.

It actually will cost them far more to:
1. Pay decent engineers to go back to the drawing board and redesign the keyboard mechanisms
2. Scrap/recycle all of the millions of already-made butterfly keyboards
3. Redesign the manufacturing process to accommodate the design change
4. Manufacture the new design

There's a reason they don't completely redesign MacBooks and iPhones every year, you know.

P.S.: that said, even after 4 years of dealing with these keyboard issues, I still stick with the MacBook, so I guess you can count me as "still loving" it. Tried some alternatives already and aside from their keyboards being a bit more reliable, the other things are more deal-breakers for me. For instance, MacOS still leads the industry for multi-desktop/workspace management, and I won't ever switch until another OS can prove to me that its solution to multi-desktop/workspace is superior.
 
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BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
4,613
5,664
California
Well, I think it depends on how much you type on the keyboard.

I sincerely doubt a PhD will ever type and smash on all of the keys of the keyboard as evenly and consistently as, say... a Software Engineer.

In fact, I doubt any other profession aside from maybe IT will ever hit all of the keys as much as a Software Engineer does.

And here's my experience: I have had butterfly keys from 2015 to 2016 to 2017 and now 2018. I have had to fix/replace ALL of those computers.

NONE OF THEM have ever escaped a key getting stuck eventually. None. I still have receipts and Apple-booked appointments to show for it.

And that's across FIVE different devices.

So you tell me why this is an isolated case.

ALL of my Software Engineer friends in Silicon Valley have also had to at least do one keyboard replacement for the butterfly keys.

So I think most of this is just that people don't actually type on their keyboards enough to really turn it into an issue. As opposed to, say... folks like me who essentially rely on the keyboard to be perfect in order to function at their jobs. Even one key failing to register is detrimental to work.

Also it is WRONG to think that replacing the keyboard is more costly than a redesign. It's pretty simple: Apple has made millions of these keyboards, so they likely already have the millions ready for replacement. The manufacturing process is already in place to make more of the butterfly keys, and only small tweaks can be made to not break the whole process.

It actually will cost them far more to:
1. Pay decent engineers to go back to the drawing board and redesign the keyboard mechanisms
2. Scrap/recycle all of the millions of already-made butterfly keyboards
3. Redesign the manufacturing process to accommodate the design change
4. Manufacture the new design

There's a reason they don't completely redesign MacBooks and iPhones every year, you know.

P.S.: that said, even after 4 years of dealing with these keyboard issues, I still stick with the MacBook, so I guess you can count me as "still loving" it. Tried some alternatives already and aside from their keyboards being a bit more reliable, the other things are more deal-breakers for me. For instance, MacOS still leads the industry for multi-desktop/workspace management, and I won't ever switch until another OS can prove to me that its solution to multi-desktop/workspace is superior.
Interesting take on the whole situation and very plausible. I appreciate the time you spent to write this up. Guess I'm lucky I use my MBP with an external monitor/mouse/keyboard mostly. I program on my XPS 15 (work provided) all day.
 
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