Apple’s 2015-2019 laptops were designed with a new keyboard that failed to hold up under normal use. Crumbs, dirt, and dust could cause keys to stick or fail. As a result, Apple faced a lawsuit that led to a $50 million settlement, which recently received final approval from a federal court judge in California. The settlement covers compensation for repairs that affected individuals had paid for.
The Final Approval
US District Court Judge Edward Davila denied an attempt to amend the agreement, stating that 86,000 people filed claims. This finally puts a figure on the number of people affected who will get compensation for repairs they’d paid for. Apple’s settlement doesn’t include an admission of wrongdoing but will pay some people back up to $395 to cover their repair costs.
The original suit was brought about by Casey Johnston, who famously wrote in The Outline that “The new MacBook keyboard is ruining my life.” Despite Apple’s repeated attempts to iterate on the keyboard, the problem didn’t go away until it released the 16-inch MacBook Pro in 2019, which took things back to the “scissor switch” design that also ships in the Magic Keyboard for Apple desktops. The design was fully phased out of its products a few months later when Apple released a redesigned 13-inch MacBook Pro.
This final wrinkle in the saga involved six objectors who offered arguments saying the settlement wasn’t fair to MacBook owners who’d never repaired their failed keyboards or that the $125 offered to those who’d only had to pay for one replacement wasn’t enough to cover the cost of repairs. But Davila denied their objections, stating that just wanting more money isn’t enough to deny the settlement’s approval.
The $50 million settlement for Apple’s bad butterfly keyboard design has finally received final approval from a federal court judge in California. This puts a figure on the number of people affected who will get compensation for repairs they’d paid for. While the settlement doesn’t include an admission of wrongdoing, it will pay some people back up to $395 to cover their repair costs.