The new MacBook Pro now has a keyboard that makes slightly less noise than the previous iteration. The company has been silent on the rampant issues people are facing with the mechanism. The issue was acknowledged for the first time last month with a repair program. This has left people wondering if the unchanged keyboard of the new laptop is susceptible to dust and crumb contamination under the skin.
iFixit has reported a discovery that shows that the new MacBook Pro keyboard uses a silicone membrane underneath each individual key keeping dirt and other particles from finding their way under the keyboard and messing the mechanism. A new 15-inch MacBook Pro keyboard was dismantled for discovering the new mechanism underneath.
There was a patent from Apple that went public in March – the mechanism has great similarity to the same. The patent described various methods for keyboard design for prevention of accumulation of crumbs and dust underneath the keys that can cause mechanical problems. The methods explain how using a “guard structure extending from the key cap” would “funnel” contaminants away from the sensitive areas of the key mechanism. When the key is not pressed, the guard structure will get separated from the base. The structure won’t make much contact with the base even when the key is pressed because of a gasket in between.
The patent says that the gasket could be made of a layer of silicone so that it would act as a membrane. According to iFixit, that is exactly how the new MacBook Pro keyboard operates, and that is what has made the keyboard quieter.
There is no certainty whether this method will be successful or not. Problems have been prevailing for years in the MacBook Pro ever since Apple introduced the butterfly switch mechanism that debuted in 2015 MacBook. But it is enough that Apple actually cared to take the issue seriously enough and worked for implementing a solution. However, Apple did not publicize the change and admit that they had a big problem with the mechanism.