Apple quietly addressed ‘Flexgate’ issue with MacBook Pro redesign


Affected displays reportedly show a stage lighting effect (shown above) before failing entirely. 
Image: SourceSunToM /MacRumors

Last year’s MacBook Pro may have solved the “Flexgate” issue that some users reported with MacBook Pros produced from 2016 onwards, reports iFixit. The 2018 MacBook Pro uses a display cable that’s 2mm longer than its predecessor, meaning it’s under less strain as the laptop is opened, potentially reducing its failure rate over time.

Although Apple has never acknowledged the design issue, multiple owners of MacBook Pros have reported experiencing “flexgate” symptoms. The problem appears to stem from the fact that the laptop screen’s display cable is pulled taught around the edge of a controller board as the machine is opened and closed throughout the course of normal use, causing the display’s image to degrade over time as the cable wears. At first, these screens will show a stage-light effect across their bottom edge, and eventually they’ll fail completely once the laptop is opened past 90 degrees.

Since the $6 display cable is soldered onto the laptop’s screen, if it fails you have to replace the entire screen at a cost of around $700, according to iFixit. Apple has not changed this element of the design between the two models of laptop, meaning you’ll still have to replace the entire screen if Apple’s design change hasn’t solved the issue.

Although still soldered on, the new display cable (left) is 2mm longer on the 2018 MacBook Pro.
 Image: iFixit

Last year’s MacBook Pros aren’t yet old enough for us to know whether the “flexgate” issue has been completely solved, but we’ve contacted Apple to ask if it believes the issue has been addressed and if warranties will be extended to cover the repairs.