Apple's butterfly keyboards came in for criticism at last night's Academy Awards. Talking to press backstage after winning an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, Jojo Rabbit director Taika Waititi took the opportunity to voice his frustration with the controversial MacBook keyboards (via The Verge).

taika waititi

Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

"Apple needs to fix those keyboards," he said. "They are impossible to write on — they've gotten worse. It makes me want to go back to PCs. Because PC keyboards, the bounce-back for your fingers is way better. Hands up who still uses a PC? You know what I'm talking about. It's a way better keyboard. Those Apple keyboards are horrendous."

"I've got some shoulder problems," Waititi continued. "I've got OOS [Occupational Overuse Syndrome, a term used in New Zealand for RSI] — I don't know what you call it over here, this sort of thing here (gestures to arm), that tendon which goes down your forearm down into the thumb? You know what I'm talking about, if you guys are ever writing. And what happens is you open the laptop and you're like this (makes uncomfortable hunched-over-laptop pose) — we've just got to fix those keyboards. The WGA needs to step in and actually do something."

It's unclear if Waititi has any experience with the new 16-inch MacBook Pro, which features a redesigned scissor switch keyboard, largely based on the standalone Magic Keyboard for the iMac. Given the tried-and-tested design, the keyboard should prove far more reliable than the troublesome butterfly keyboards used across the MacBook lineup in recent years.

Apple is expected to launch a 13-inch MacBook Pro with a scissor keyboard in the first half of 2020, following in the footsteps of the 16-inch MacBook Pro last October. There is some hope that the 13-inch model will become a 14-inch model, but that remains uncertain.


Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has predicted that Apple will transition its entire notebook lineup to scissor switch keyboards in 2020, including all MacBook Pro and MacBook Air models.

It wouldn't be surprising if Apple completely does away with its butterfly keyboards, which have suffered from issues with sticky, repeating, or nonfunctional keys since their inception in 2016. Apple continues to offer free repairs to affected customers as part of its worldwide service program.

Related Roundup: 13" MacBook Pro
Related Forum: MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

JamonBull Avatar
25 months ago
Now if this isn’t a humbling experience for Tim Cook, Dan Riccio and Phil Schiller I don’t know what will be.
Score: 37 Votes (Like | Disagree)
martyjmclean Avatar
25 months ago
The Mac’s reputation has been destroyed by this stupid keyboard.
Apple only half-admitting there’s a problem once it affected PR and $$$ didn’t help.

It should never have left concept, let alone left on the shelf for 5 years.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Expos of 1969 Avatar
25 months ago
Excellent!!!! Apple needs a lot more public shaming. Bring it on.


Now if this isn’t a humbling experience for Tim Cook, Dan Riccio and Phil Schiller I don’t know what will be.
Those arrogant dopes don't give a damn unfortunately.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
izyreal Avatar
25 months ago
I thought that the negative press around the keyboard was overblown until I got the MacBook Pro for work. I currently have the key-doubling issue and it drives me insane! I can’t type a single email without experiencing the issue 4-5 times! It’s awful! I can’t wait to get rid of this piece of $3,500 junk!

I took an informal office poll of the people that sit near me that use MacBook Pros and 6 out of 6 had problems that they experienced daily with their keyboards.

*Edit*
I have done all the recommended steps to resolve the issues short of sending it in for repair. I’ll send it in soon because it’s so much of a problem.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mw360 Avatar
25 months ago
Apple deserve to be roasted about this well into the next generation of MBP’s and the next, whether they fix it or not. They were perfectly happy giving customers a $600 bill to fix a single faulty key. I haven’t checked, but I suspect they still are. 2020 will be interesting when all those 2016’s run out of their 4 year warranty and Apple starts screwing the hapless owners.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TravelsInBlue Avatar
25 months ago
The keyboard is just the tip of the iceberg with these Macs, but it’s the poster-child for the entire flawed design philosophy.

The arrogance of forcing a keyboard redesign that didn’t need to happen, removing I/O to force USB-C when 90% of the world still uses USB-A/HDMI, forcing the touchbar nobody finds useful, taking away upgradability, forcing a flawed T2 chip that adds an entire new point of failure.

That’s aside to the durability and quality control of these machines. You shouldn’t feel the need to purchase another $400 warranty in case of another logic board failure, or because there’s some other half baked idea Apple added in that potentially breaks the laptop.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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