million to solve Apple's butterfly keyboard disaster

$50 million to solve Apple’s butterfly keyboard disaster

The novel for the faults in the keyboards of the MacBook, MacBook Pro and MacBook Air launched between 2015 and 2019, adds a new chapter. Will it be the final? It is that Apple proposed to pay 50 million dollars to settle a class action lawsuit brought by customers who suffered from the repeated drawbacks of the butterfly mechanism.

Those from Cupertino presented the possible agreement in a federal court in San Jose, California, and now they are waiting for it to be approved by a judge. However, Apple insists that the allegations raised by the plaintiffs are not true, and that the offer of compensation it is not an “admission of guilt or wrongdoing”.

According to customers who sued Apple, the company knew that butterfly keyboards they were prone to failure, but decided to hide the information and go ahead with its implementation on different versions of its laptops.

The document presented by the apple firm explains that the proposed out-of-court settlement is not valid for all affected United States customers, but for those who reside in one of these seven states: California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, New York and Washington.

Regarding affected models, the compensation covers the following:

  • MacBook 12-inch from 2015, 2016 and 2017.
  • MacBook Air 13-inch from 2018 and 2019.
  • MacBook Pro 13-inch and 15-inch models introduced in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Apple wants to end the controversy over the keyboards of its laptops

The $50 million that Apple proposes to pay to end this controversy will not make the plaintiffs rich. Maybe yes to their lawyers, but that’s something we’ll get to later.

As explained Reuters, the legal representatives of the affected clients expect payments of between 50 and 395 dollars, depending on the case. The lowest compensations would go to those people who were forced to change individual keys on their laptops.

While the maximum payments would be received by those who changed the full keyboard more than once, taking into account that the spare parts had the same problems. On the other hand, those who have replaced the entire keyboard only once would enter a kind of intermediate step, for which they could receive about 125 dollars.

But, as we anticipated, if the judge approves Apple’s settlement proposal, the real winners would be the lawyers who carried out the lawsuit. Firms Girard Sharp LLP and Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith LLP could pocket up to 15 million dollars for their work.

Amount that would come out of the $50 million that Apple would pay, which would leave only $35,000,000 to distribute among affected customers.

It will be necessary to see if the arrangement proposed by those from Cupertino finally receives the approval of justice. Let’s not forget that Apple abandoned the butterfly keyboard in 2020, to make way for the return of the scissor system.

This modification was tremendously beneficial for the firm led by Tim Cook. In 2020 and 2021, their expenses on guarantees decreased markedly compared to previous years.

And it is estimated that the change in keyboard type was crucial for this to happen, reducing the probability of failures and the need to remove the entire upper case of MacBooks to replace them.

Rachel Maga
Rachel Maga is a technology journalist currently working at Globe Live Media agency. She has been in the Technology Journalism field for over 5 years now. Her life's biggest milestone is the inside tour of Tesla Industries, which was gifted to her by the legend Elon Musk himself.