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Apple will begin repairing MacBook Pro keyboards at Apple Stores, reducing turnaround time

Photo via iFixIt
Photo via iFixIt
In an internal memo to Apple Store employees, Apple has instructed its repair technicians to begin repairing MacBook and MacBook Pro keyboards on-site rather than shipping the devices to a repair facility. It appears that Apple is trying to mitigate the lengthy turnaround time for the repair, an aftershock of the keyboard's failure that has become a major sticking point for several customers.

It’s no secret that Apple’s MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops have been plagued with keyboard issues since the introduction of the company’s “butterfly” switch key mechanism. A multitude of MacBook and MacBook Pro users have complained of keyboard issues, prompting Apple to offer free keyboard repair for older machines (2015-2017 models).

However, the repair process is cumbersome, requiring the device to be shipped to a repair facility. That looks like it will change; in an internal memo obtained by MacRumors, Apple has instructed its Apple Store employees to repair keyboards in-house in an effort to reduce the turnaround time of the repair.

Up to this point, a customer with a broken keyboard would have to drop off their MacBook or MacBook Pro to an Apple Store to open a repair ticket. The Apple Store would then ship the device off for repairs. After repairs were made, the repair facility would ship the device back to the Apple Store, who would then notify the customer that their computer was ready for pick up. The whole process would take about five business days and quickly became a major annoyance to MacBook and MacBook Pro users.

The new policy should drop the turnaround time to next-day service, provided the on-site Apple technicians can adequately perform the repair. It looks like Apple is trying to improve the customer experience surrounding keyboard failure in any way possible.

The memo, which was sent to Apple Store employees last week, states:

Most keyboard-related repairs will be required to be completed in store until further notice. Additional service parts have been shipped to stores to support the increased volume.

These repairs should be prioritized to provide next-day turnaround time. When completing the repair, have the appropriate service guide open and carefully follow all repair steps.

While Apple’s butterfly keyboard desperately needs an overhaul to address these issues (this year’s MacBook Pros are using a third-generation butterfly keyboard and have a consistent failure rate), it is nice to see Apple taking some steps to mitigate the inconvenience caused by bad design.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2019 04 > Apple will begin repairing MacBook Pro keyboards at Apple Stores, reducing turnaround time
Sam Medley, 2019-04-23 (Update: 2019-04-23)
Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Review Editor - @samuel_medley
I've been a "tech-head" my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a Systems Analyst for my local school district. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news articles and notebook reviews. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not hunched over an electronic device or writing code for a new database, I'm either outside with my family, playing a decade-old video game, or sitting behind a drum set.