Apple Faces Another Class-Action MacBook Pro ‘Flexgate’ Lawsuit

Another class-action complaint has been lodged against Apple, which claims that the company was aware of a MacBook Pro design flaw that caused some devices to have backlight display issues (via Apple Insider).

2016 macbook pro flexgate b

The so-called "flexgate" problem was present in some MacBook Pro models manufactured between 2016 and 2017. The problem appears as dark patches along the bottom of the MacBook Pro's display. Some users reported that opening their MacBook Pro beyond a certain angle turns off the screen entirely. iFixit discovered that this was because the delicate flex cable which connects to the bottom of the display could wear out and break over time.

The issue has been the subject of multiple lawsuits against Apple, with the last one being filed in May. Since the issue often takes time to manifest, the affected ‌MacBook Pro‌ units can be outside of Apple's one-year warranty period when they start exhibiting symptoms, resulting in an out-of-warranty repair fee of up to $850.

Apple seemingly fixed the issue by extending the length of the flex cable by 2mm in the 2018 MacBook Pro. It also launched a free repair program in May 2019, but the program only applies to 13-inch MacBook Pro models released in 2016.

The first class action lawsuit sought restitution for all costs attributable to repairing or replacing the affected MacBook Pro units, and called for Apple to expand its repair program to cover the 15-inch MacBook Pro. The proposed class was defined as all persons within the United States who purchased a 2016 or newer MacBook Pro.

"Apple was aware of the issues with the backlight screen and the defective flex cable, in light of the comments posted by consumers on Apple's discussion forum and that those comments were deleted after they were posted," the new lawsuit reads.

The second class-action complaint argues for violation of competition, false advertising, and consumer fraud laws. Apple is also accused of violation of the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, and breach of express and implied warranty, in addition to fraudulent concealment and unjust enrichment.

Plaintiffs are seeking a range of relief measures, damages, and court fees. They also hope a judgment will compel Apple to identify and declare all defective MacBook Pros. As there are now two cases against Apple due to "flexgate," both of which are filed with the Northern District of California, it is likely that the cases will eventually be consolidated into one.

Top Rated Comments

Merode Avatar
48 months ago

More lawsuits for Apple! When is it going to stop?
When they take responsibility for their products. Those class action lawsuits are nothing new and usually the only thing that pushes Apple into repair programs.
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JoelTheSuperior Avatar
48 months ago
I think the biggest issue is just how high the out of warranty repair fees are. If the repair was say, $50-100 then I genuinely don't think many people would be too miffed about it, but $850 is outrageous.

The cynical part of me has to suspect that Apple deliberately pushes their out of warranty repair fees sky-high to encourage people to simply buy a new device rather than repairing theirs. I have found when going to the genius bar before that I've been encouraged to consider just buying a new device instead of repairing the one I have.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GeoStructural Avatar
48 months ago

Another day, another lawsuit. When will these money-grabbing fiends stop?
It is not just money grabbing. Look at Zone of Tech (long) video about this issue, he payed over 3000 dollars for his machine and was denied repair many times. Only months later he was given a replacement after posting a video on YouTube, within the box he found comments like "issued for advertising/PR purposes", so the technical request was never really properly addressed, he got his replacement because he was a Youtuber and it was bad publicity.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ouimetnick Avatar
48 months ago
In other news, a poor design results in high failure rates. Why Apple has to change things just for thinness when no one asked for it is beyond me. The butterfly keyboard failure and this flex ribbon cable issue.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
G4DPII Avatar
48 months ago

Another day, another lawsuit. When will these money-grabbing fiends stop?
When Apple start using premium parts that match the premium prices they charge.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nutmac Avatar
48 months ago

Another day, another lawsuit. When will these money-grabbing fiends stop?
No, Apple totally deserves to get sued for flexgate.

I have 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro affected by this design flaw. The computer was babied and used mostly as a desktop. And just randomly out of the blue, patches of dark spots along the bottom of the screen that I have to shell out $850 to get repaired.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 15 Pro FineWoven

Apple Reportedly Stops Production of FineWoven Accessories

Sunday April 21, 2024 6:03 am PDT by
Apple has stopped production of FineWoven accessories, according to the Apple leaker and prototype collector known as "Kosutami." In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Kosutami explained that Apple has stopped production of FineWoven accessories due to its poor durability. The company may move to another non-leather material for its premium accessories in the future. Kosutami has revealed...
maxresdefault

Apple Announces 'Let Loose' Event on May 7 Amid Rumors of New iPads

Tuesday April 23, 2024 7:11 am PDT by
Apple has announced it will be holding a special event on Tuesday, May 7 at 7 a.m. Pacific Time (10 a.m. Eastern Time), with a live stream to be available on Apple.com and on YouTube as usual. The event invitation has a tagline of "Let Loose" and shows an artistic render of an Apple Pencil, suggesting that iPads will be a focus of the event. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more ...
iOS 17 All New Features Thumb

iOS 17.5 Will Add These New Features to Your iPhone

Sunday April 21, 2024 3:00 am PDT by
The upcoming iOS 17.5 update for the iPhone includes only a few new user-facing features, but hidden code changes reveal some additional possibilities. Below, we have recapped everything new in the iOS 17.5 and iPadOS 17.5 beta so far. Web Distribution Starting with the second beta of iOS 17.5, eligible developers are able to distribute their iOS apps to iPhone users located in the EU...
Apple Vision Pro Dual Loop Band Orange Feature 2

Apple Cuts Vision Pro Shipments as Demand Falls 'Sharply Beyond Expectations'

Tuesday April 23, 2024 9:44 am PDT by
Apple has dropped the number of Vision Pro units that it plans to ship in 2024, going from an expected 700 to 800k units to just 400k to 450k units, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Orders have been scaled back before the Vision Pro has launched in markets outside of the United States, which Kuo says is a sign that demand in the U.S. has "fallen sharply beyond expectations." As a...
Provenance Emulator

PlayStation and SEGA Emulator for iPhone and Apple TV Coming to App Store [Updated]

Friday April 19, 2024 8:29 am PDT by
The lead developer of the multi-emulator app Provenance has told iMore that his team is working towards releasing the app on the App Store, but he did not provide a timeframe. Provenance is a frontend for many existing emulators, and it would allow iPhone and Apple TV users to emulate games released for a wide variety of classic game consoles, including the original PlayStation, SEGA Genesis,...
apple vision pro orange

Apple Vision Pro Customer Interest Dying Down at Some Retail Stores

Monday April 22, 2024 2:12 am PDT by
Apple Vision Pro, Apple's $3,500 spatial computing device, appears to be following a pattern familiar to the AR/VR headset industry – initial enthusiasm giving way to a significant dip in sustained interest and usage. Since its debut in the U.S. in February 2024, excitement for the Apple Vision Pro has noticeably cooled, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Writing in his latest Power On...