Apple extends MacBook Pro repair program: Details here
This week Apple extended the free service program for 13-inch MacBook Pro owners affected by defective displays. The program provides coverage for eligible notebooks for a period of five years in total. An Apple representative confirmed the program's validity in India with us. The service program covers all MacBook Pro notebooks, sold between October 2016 and February 2018, affected by LCD backlight issues.
Apple explicitly lists eligible devices and faults covered
Under the new repair program, Apple will fix display issues plaguing 13-inch MacBook Pros. The notebooks eligible for this program have either two or four Thunderbolt 3 ports. Both variants belong to the 13-inch MacBook Pro. Eligible MacBook Pros include those exhibiting bright vertical areas along the entire bottom of the screen in addition to those with total backlight failure.
New program extends eligibility period from 4 to 5 years
According to Apple Support, the free service covers eligible MacBook Pro devices for five years from purchase or three years from the beginning of this program, whichever is longer. The program promises free repair for affected users. Apple will also refund the service bill if customers have already paid for fixing the flexgate issues prior to the program.
Flexgate revisited: Short display cable is the root cause
The 2016 MacBook Pro notebooks are known to be plagued by the issue dubbed as flexgate. The short display ribbon cable has been isolated as the problematic component which, iFixit explains, wears out with repeated opening and closing of the notebook. Apple has since fixed the issue by using a longer ribbon cable in the 2018 series of MacBook Pros and onwards.
Apple's lack of foresight and testing has cost it dearly
Apple's decision to use a short ribbon cable highlights yet another instance of poor product engineering and quality checks on Apple's part. Just like folding smartphones, notebook hinges (and other parts subject to wear) are tested for a minimum acceptable service life. Flexgate demonstrates that Apple's quality checks did not catch the problem before the product went on sale.