Earlier this week, Apple quietly released updated models of its MacBook Pro. The 2019 MacBook Pro features new 8th and 9th-generation Intel processors along with a handful of other changes, including freshly tweaked butterfly keyboards, according to a report from The Verge.
Apple first introduced its butterfly key-switch keyboard in 2015 on the 12-inch MacBook. The company later made the move to implement the new “short-travel” keys on the rest of its laptop lineup, including the MacBook Pro. However, since the keyboard’s introduction, customers have been voicing countless complaints about the keyboard not working as it should.
One of the main issues experienced by users is the sticking of individual keys on the keyboard, which caused double letters to appear while typing or the required letter to be skipped completely. These issues were revealed to be caused by dust particles getting lodged underneath the keys, as previously reported by The Inquisitr.
The company has tried to address the issue in the past by adding a protective and flexible layer underneath the keys to prevent foreign particles from getting in and blocking the keys. This fix worked for some users, but others weren’t so lucky.
Now, Apple is hoping to completely eliminate its keyboard issues with its most recent adjustment.
According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, the company “said it has made a change to a material in the keyboard mechanism. Apple didn’t say what specifically changed but said it would help with the double key-press issue.”
In an effort to show customers exactly what Apple has done differently with its new keyboards, iFixit, a blog known for its in-depth teardowns and hardware analysis, posted a video of the 2019 MacBook Pro’s total teardown.
iFixit has details on “new materials” in the MacBook Pro keyboards. Small tweaks to membrane & metal switch.
My take: when it comes to consumer trust in Apple’s butterfly keyboard design, different materials won’t make a material difference.
— Dieter Bohn (@backlon) May 24, 2019
“The cover [material of the transparent switch] in the 2018 model is semi-opaque, somewhat tacky, and feels like silicone. The new model is clearer and smooth to the touch,” iFixit noted.
iFixit then analyzed the material of the 2018 model and the new material found in the 2019 model to determine the individual makeup.
“The closest match for the 2018 model is either poly(acetylene) with aromatic urethane side groups, or a type of TPU (which seems more likely). The 2019 model is a match for polyamide (commonly known as nylon).”
It was also revealed that the dome switches, which detect when a user strikes the key, have been modified. iFixit speculates that Apple “may be using a revised heat treatment, or alloy, or possibly both.”
While it’s too soon to tell if these changes will actually correct the issues users have been experiencing, Apple is prepared to back its product. The company has extended its keyboard-repair program to include coverage for its third-generation keyboards, as well as the updated keyboards now found on its 2019 MacBook Pros.