Apple is planning to switch from the often criticized butterfly keyboard design to a new scissor switch keyboard starting with the release of a refreshed MacBook Air later this year, reports analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
The new keyboard will allegedly offer better key travel and durability.
There have been successful developments in the new scissor keyboard. The new keyboard could improve the typing experience by offering longer key travel and durability by adopting glass fiber to reinforce the keys’ structure.
While the scissor switch keyboard will debut in the MacBook Air, Kuo also expects the MacBook Pro to adopt the design starting in 2020.
We believe the partially refreshed MacBook Pro models will also adopt a new scissor keyboard in 2020; shipments of MacBook models equipped with a new scissor keyboard will grow 500–700% YoY in 2020. Though the butterfly keyboard is still thinner than the new scissor keyboard, we think most users can’t tell the difference. Furthermore, the new scissor keyboard could offer a better user experience and benefit Apple’s profits; therefore, we predict that the butterfly keyboard may finally disappear in the long term.
The current butterfly keyboard has a tendency to fail when dust or other small particles get trapped inside the mechanism. After years of customer complaints Apple has launched Keyboard Service Program that includes all MacBooks with the butterfly mechanism; however, the program only covers users for four years.
Kuo says the new scissor switch keyboard will be supplied by Taiwan-based Sunrex rather than Wistron.
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