MacBook Pro ‘Flexgate’ flaw fuels demands from angry owners

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These cables can wear out and cause your MacBook Pro’s display to fail.
These “delicate” cables can wear out and cause your 2016 MacBook Pro’s display to fail.
Photo: iFixit

A law firm accuses Apple of forcing customers to fix the malfunctioning displays in the 15-inch MacBook Pro that launched in 2016 even though the failure is a result of a design flaw. The problem is common enough that it has a name: Flexgate.

The Parris Law Firm is hoping to force Apple to fix all affected computers, and refund the cost to anyone who already had this problem repaired.

Flexgate is a known problem with 2016 MacBooks

According to the DIY repair website iFixit, every 2016 MacBook Pro has “delicate” ribbon cables that connect the screen with the display controller inside the main body of the laptop. Opening and closing the clamshell case eventually causes these to wear out and begin to tear.

Obviously, that causes the screen to eventually malfunction or fail. Usually the first symptom is a “stage light” effect across the bottom of the display.

If your MacBook Pro has this “stage light” effect it’s probably about to fail.
If your MacBook Pro has this “stage light” effect it’s probably about to fail.
Photo: Louis Rossmann

Apple admits that the 13-­inch MacBook Pro released in 2016 has this flaw. It created a service program to fix these devices, free of charge.

But the 15-inch version of the macOS laptop isn’t included. Apple doesn’t acknowledge that Flexgate happens to this computer.

Lawsuit intends to expand free MacBook screen repairs

Attorneys at Parris Law Firm filed a lawsuit on Wednesday on behalf of a client who wants a refund from Apple for the $850 he spent to get the display repaired in a 15-inch MacBook Pro from 2016. Mahan Taleshpour purchased the device in 2017 and it began to fail in January 2020.

“Apple’s 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pros all shared the same product defect, but Apple only included their less expensive product line within the repair program,” accused Parris attorney Alexander R. Wheeler.

The lawsuit asks that it be made into a class action. And they want Apple to “make restitution to Plaintiff and the class members all costs attributable to remedying or replacing MacBook laptops.” And the suit asks that the free repair program be expanded to the 15-inch MacBook Pro.

Source: Parris Law Firm