Apple Launches New Backlight Service Program for 2016 13-Inch MacBook Pro Display to Address 'Flexgate' Issues

Alongside the launch of new MacBook Pro models, Apple today introduced a new Backlight Service Program for the 13-inch MacBook Pro.

According to Apple, a "very small percentage" of 2016 13-inch ‌MacBook Pro‌ displays can exhibit vertical bright areas along the bottom of the screen or a backlight that malfunctions entirely.


Apple will repair affected devices, which includes machines sold between October 2016 and February 2018, for free. Eligible models are listed below:

  • ‌MacBook Pro‌ (13-­inch, 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • ‌MacBook Pro‌ (13-­inch, 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)

No other ‌MacBook Pro‌ models are included in the repair program at this time.

There have been ongoing complaints from ‌MacBook Pro‌ owners about uneven backlighting, though reports have covered machines beyond the 13-inch 2016 ‌MacBook Pro‌. There has been speculation that the problem is caused by a delicate and easy-to-break flex cable.

Apple says that those with affected machines should find an Apple Authorized Service Provider, make an appointment at an Apple Retail Store, or contact Apple Support to arrange a mail-in repair.

The Backlight Service Program will be available to ‌MacBook Pro‌ owners for four years after the first retail sale of the unit, or two years from May 21, 2019, whichever is longer. According to internal Apple repair documents, displays with a confirmed backlight issue are eligible for LCD replacement at no charge, including displays that have accidental damage.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Caution)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
11 months ago
Does the 13" non-Touch Bar have the all-time highest number of service programs? :eek:

[LIST=1]
* https://www.apple.com/support/13-inch-macbook-pro-display-backlight-service/
* https://www.apple.com/support/13-inch-macbook-pro-solid-state-drive-service-program/
* https://www.apple.com/support/keyboard-service-program-for-mac-notebooks/
* https://www.apple.com/support/13inch-macbookpro-battery-replacement/
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
11 months ago
i wonder if they're going to fix this with the exact same part. which means the issue is bound to occur again.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
11 months ago

Ugh. Why does everything have to be "something-gate"? How about just naming it accurately and descriptively?


Maybe if Apple were proactive about addressing design failures and didn't have to be shamed or threatened into doing so, these issues wouldn't be considered cover ups.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
11 months ago
2017 15" model here....

Last week i noticed what appeared to be the stage lighting issue. I closed my lid, went to lunch, and when I returned, no backlight. The warranty ran out on my computer about 3 months ago. So I call Apple tech support, they take some information and eventually refer me to a local Apple store. I take it in, they take a look and tell me that the repair was going to be almost $800. I politely argued that this issue is affecting a larger population than they are acknowledging and ended up arguing my case to the store manager. I had lots of evidence that this issue is a wider issue than just the occasional failure and in the end the manager agreed to have it repaired at Apple's expense.

I'm extremely grateful for the manager and technician at the store level taking pity on me and helping me out. I'm furious with Apple for continually releasing substandard products and treating it's loyal consumers like they are crazy when they complain about hardware failures. I shouldn't have had to argue my case as strongly as I did for an issue that they clearly are aware of.
[doublepost=1558464734][/doublepost]

Why not 2016 15inch models??

and 2017 models as well. And I'm hearing some anecdotal evidence that the 2018s are also having this issue. Sometimes the quest for thinner/lighter laptops trumps functionality.
[doublepost=1558464793][/doublepost]

4 weeks ago I closed my computer, reopened it and no backlight. The screen was on but went dim and so did the keyboard back light. Out of warranty and cost me $500. Any idea of this is what’s being covered?

If I were you, I'd go back to the Apple store and lobby for a refund.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
11 months ago
Why not 2016 15inch models??
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
11 months ago

4 weeks ago I closed my computer, reopened it and no backlight. The screen was on but went dim and so did the keyboard back light. Out of warranty and cost me $500. Any idea of this is what’s being covered?


Just called and they issued me a full refund!
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Releases iOS and iPadOS 13.4 With New Mail Toolbar, iCloud Folder Sharing, Trackpad Support for iPad and More

Tuesday March 24, 2020 9:56 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 13.4, the latest major updates to the iOS 13 operating system that was released in September. iOS and iPadOS 13.4 come two months after the release of iOS and iPadOS 13.3.1 with Screen Time Communication Limits. The iOS and ‌iPadOS‌ 13.4 updates are available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the updates, go to...

Apple Releases macOS Catalina 10.15.4 With Screen Time Communication Limits and Real-Time Apple Music Lyrics

Tuesday March 24, 2020 10:21 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple today released macOS Catalina 10.15.4, the fourth update to the macOS Catalina operating system that was released in October. macOS Catalina 10.15.4 comes a couple of months after the release of macOS Catalina 10.15.3. macOS Catalina 10.15.4 can be downloaded from the Mac App Store for free using the Update feature in the System Preferences app. The macOS Catalina 10.15.4 update...

Hands-On With Apple's New Smart Keyboard Folio for the 2020 iPad Pro Models

Tuesday March 24, 2020 12:38 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple last week introduced new 11 and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models, which are set to arrive in the hands of customers starting this week. Apple introduced a nifty new Magic Keyboard with trackpad alongside the new iPad Pro models that's coming in May, but it also debuted a new Smart Keyboard Folio, which is available now. We picked up the Smart Keyboard Folio for the designed for the 2020 iPad...

Apple Helps Source Over 10 Million N95 Masks for Healthcare Providers in the U.S.

Wednesday March 25, 2020 10:25 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple over the weekend announced plans to donate millions of N95 masks to hospitals in the United States and Europe, and according to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Apple has been able to source more than 10 million N95 masks in the U.S. and millions more in Europe. Apple CEO Tim Cook said on Saturday that Apple was aiming to donate supplies to healthcare providers fighting COVID-19, and clarified...

Apple Considering Delaying iPhone 12 Launch 'by Months'

Wednesday March 25, 2020 12:51 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple is preparing to delay the launch of the 2020 iPhones expected to be equipped with 5G technology, according to sources with knowledge of Apple's plans that spoke to Japanese news site Nikkei. Apple has reportedly held internal discussions about the possibility of delaying the launch "by months" over fears of how well iPhones would sell in the current situation, and supply chain sources...

2020 iPad Pro Unboxing Videos and First Impressions

Tuesday March 24, 2020 5:34 am PDT by Joe Rossignol
Apple last week introduced new iPad Pro models with an similar performing A12Z Bionic chip, an Ultra Wide camera for 0.5x zoom, and a LiDAR Scanner for enhanced augmented reality. The new iPad Pro models will begin arriving to customers and go on sale at select stores starting tomorrow, and ahead of time, the first unboxing videos have surfaced. The new iPad Pro models will be compatible with A...

Hands-On With the New 2020 12.9-Inch iPad Pro

Wednesday March 25, 2020 2:10 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple last week announced new 11 and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models, and as of today, the new iPads are arriving to customers. We picked up one of the new 12.9-inch models and checked it out to see just what's new and whether it's worth buying. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. When it comes to design, the new iPad Pro models are identical to the 2018 iPad Pro models, but ...

Mobile Networks in Multiple Countries Display 'Stay Home' Message When Users Connect to Cellular Instead of WiFi

Tuesday March 24, 2020 3:46 pm PDT by Juli Clover
iPhone users in several countries who disconnect from WiFi on their devices will see a "Stay Home" message at the top of the Control Center where cellular network information is displayed. Image via Matt Navarra According to reports on Twitter, the status bar messages are showing up in countries that include Germany, Belgium, United Arab Emirates, Peru, Turkey, India, Luxembourg, Romania,...

Apple Releases tvOS 13.4 for Fourth and Fifth-Generation Apple TV Models

Tuesday March 24, 2020 9:53 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple today released tvOS 13.4, the third major update to the tvOS operating system that runs on the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models. tvOS 13.4 comes a couple of months after the release of tvOS 13.3.1. tvOS 13.4, a free update, can be downloaded over the air through the Settings app on the Apple TV by going to System > Software Update. Apple TV owners who have automatic software ...

Benchmarks Suggest New iPad Pro's A12Z Chip is Nearly Identical to A12X in 2018 iPad Pro

Monday March 23, 2020 7:18 pm PDT by Juli Clover
One of the new 2020 iPad Pro models equipped with an A12Z chip arrived early to a Reddit user, who did some benchmarking tests to see how it performs. In a Geekbench 5 test, the 11-inch 2020 iPad Pro earned a single-core score of 1114 and a multi-core score of 4654, which is close to the Geekbench scores of the 11-inch iPad Pro from 2018. The 11-inch iPad Pro has an aggregate single-core G...