Apple Abandons Its Breakable Butterfly Keyboard for Good
Apple has updated its 13-inch MacBook Pro workhorse with all the iterative tweaks and polishes you would expect from a surprise Monday morning laptop reveal. But the announcement’s ultimate significance lies less in what the new laptop adds than what it subtracts: Apple has finally abandoned its uncomfortable, vexing, eminently breakable butterfly keyboard.
The butterfly keyboard was a marquee feature of Apple’s innovative, expensive 2015 MacBook, and a gamble from the start. Most consumer keys use a traditional “scissor-switch” mechanism. In that system, two criss-crossing pieces of plastic sit under every key and above a membrane; when you press down, they collapse like a beach chair and register your stroke. Scissor-switches became standard largely because they’re quieter and have a lower profile than their clickety-clack mechanical keyboard cousins.