After three years, Apple has settled a class action lawsuit over the faulty MacBook Butterfly keyboards for $50 million in the United States.
Starting in 2015, Apple switched MacBook from its Scissor keyboard to a Butterfly keyboard to make the keyboard thinner. Contrary to the company’s expectation to deliver more stability and a better key feel, it started to receive complaints regarding the keyboard’s mechanism.
[Update: Macworld reports that a federal judge in California has given preliminary approval to the proposed $50 million settlement of the class-action lawsuit against faulty Butterfly keyboards in MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro sold in the United States between 2015- 2019. Eligible owners will be entitled to an amount from $50 to $395 depending on the repair required for their computer.]
Apple did introduce three generations of the Butterfly keyboard but it could not perfect the tech and eventually, reverted to the Scissor keyboard in all Mac models. And for affected customers, the company launched a keyboard repair program in 2018, but since it replaced the older Butterfly keyboard with a new Butterfly keyboard, it did not alleviate the problem and was deemed inadequate.
Affected MacBook owners are entitled to up to $395 each under Apple’s settlement agreement
The case was filed in 2018 that accused the tech giant of concealing flaws of the butterfly keyboard used in MacBook models sold between 2015 and 2019 and knowingly selling MacBooks with a “defective” keyboard.
In March 2021, Judge Edward Davila of California, U.S gave the MacBook butterfly keyboard lawsuit class-action status which enabled affected owners in California, Florida, Washington, Michigan, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York to sue Apple for damages for MacBook models purchased from 2015 till 2019.
- MacBook (2015 – 2017)
- MacBook Pro (2016 – 2019)
- MacBook Air ( 2018 – 2019)
Reuters reports that the tech giant has made an out-of-court settlement without any admission of wrongdoing. Once approved by the judge, the affected parties can receive up to $395 each for their damages.
Lawyers for the customers expect maximum payouts of $395 to people who replaced multiple keyboards, $125 to people who replaced one keyboard, and $50 to people who replaced key caps.
Customers also remain eligible for four years of free keyboard repairs following their purchases.
The customers’ law firms, Girard Sharp LLP and Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith LLP, may seek up to $15 million for legal fees, which would be deducted from the $50 million settlement fund, court papers show.