Apple apologizes for continuing problems with MacBook keyboard

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MacBook Air 2018 open
A critical component in your expensive new MacBook can fail on you.
Photo: Apple

MacBooks made over several years were prone to keyboard issues. Apple tweaked the design of this critical component last year, and there was great optimism that the problem had been fixed in the latest macOS computers.

Nope.

After months of use, owners of the 2018 MacBook Pro or MacBook Air are reporting keys that stick, either so they become unresponsive or repeat letters.

This was highlighted today by Joanna Stern in a Wall Street Journal editorial written on a MacBook Pro with the E and R keys failing. “To sha th pain of using an Appl laptop kyboad that’s faild aft fou months, I could only think of on ida: tak all th bokn ltts out of my column,” wrote Stern. The WSJ article has toggles to make the missing letters reappear.

Mea culpa from Apple

Apple responded to Stern’s article by saying “We are aware that a small number of users are having issues with their third-generation butterfly keyboard and for that we are sorry. The vast majority of Mac notebook customers are having a positive experience with the new keyboard.”

The company is offering more than just an apology. The 1-year warranty is still in effect on both the 2018 MacBook Pro and MacBook Air. Anyone having keyboard problems with either should take it to an Apple Store. Techs will try to remedy the issue, and if it persists they’ll put in a whole new keyboard.

There’s a solution for older models too. Apple launched a Keyboard Service Program for MacBook and MacBook Pro last fall, offering free repairs for models going back to 2015.

Procrastination doesn’t help. MacBook keyboard problems won’t get better on their own.