I dig my MacBook Air. It’s not a mighty machine by any means, but it’s lightweight, has a decent screen, an excellent trackpad, and does the job. There’s one thing I despise about it, though: The butterfly keyboard.
If you’ve purchased a MacBook model recently, you’re likely familiar with the term, but for those out of the loop: In 2015, Apple dropped the standard scissor key in favor of the so-called butterfly switch. The new design was supposed to reduce travel and speed up your typing (it also makes the device thinner), but it breaks awfully easily.
After only six months of use, I noticed one of the keys on my 2019 MacBook Air didn’t feel the same. The key travel was greatly reduced, as compared to the rest, and there was a ‘padded’ feel to it, almost like it’s stuck. As much as I dreaded it, I knew the day would come. There’s been thousands of cases after all.
The butterfly keyboard saga is so bad, Apple has put out an explainer on how to clean up your keyboard in case a key gets stuck (it’s also moved away from the butterfly switch design altogether for its newer MacBooks). I’m not gonna regurgitate Apple’s advice (you can check out its tips yourself), but it involves blowing dust and other particles from your keyboard away with a compressed air can.
That’s all fine if you happen to have one lying around, but if you don’t, and you’re desperate and irritated, it doesn’t take long before bad ideas start creeping up your mind. Like flipping your MacBook upside-down and manically shaking it up.
I did it, others have done it, and more will do it at one point. The not-so-bad thing is it actually works sometimes — I know it definitely fixed my stuck L key, for the time being at least. The bad bit is that each time you shake up a device with moving parts, you risk damaging it permanently (or making fixing it much more expensive).
Yes, I realize it’s entirely my fault I don’t have the patience to wait out a compressed air can delivery, but I can’t help but blame Apple for it.
I also understand stuck keys isn’t a problem unique to the butterfly switch — it happens on scissor keyboards too — but considering the shocking number of complaints, it looks like Apple just put out a product product with a shifty mechanism prone to malfunctions.
So, despite whatever logic dictates, fuck you Apple — my fault is your fault.
Update: My key is stuck again. Just my luck.
Published February 21, 2020 — 15:01 UTC