Judge Says Apple Intentionally Sold 2016 and 2017 MacBook Pro Models With ‘Flexgate’ Display Issues

A California judge has ruled that Apple intentionally sold MacBooks with ‘flexgate’ issue to customers. The displays on the 2016 and 2017 MacBook Pro models suffer from a “stage lighting” issue that was caused by a small and fragile flex cable.

Apple never officially acknowledged the issue, but it did roll out a service program and quietly fixed the issue in the 2018 MacBook Pro models. The issue led to a class-action lawsuit being filed against Apple. Now, a California federal judge has ruled Apple intentionally sold the 2016-2017 MacBook Pro models to consumers despite knowing about the defect.

The plaintiffs in the case had alleged that Apple’s “reliability engineers” who would have carried out stress tests and other tests on the MacBook Pro models before they went on sale must have discovered the issue related to the display and informed Apple about the same.

Plaintiff Mahan Taleshpour also alleges that Apple removed comments and threads from its support forums on posts related to the “flexgate.” Judge Edward Davila rules that if the accusations turn out to be true, they act as further proof of Apple being aware of the issue and intentionally ignoring it.

“The court finds that the allegations of pre-release testing in combination with the allegations of substantial customer complaints are sufficient to show that Apple had exclusive knowledge of the alleged defect,” the judge wrote in his opinion.

On its part, Apple says that it could not have determined the issue with the flex cable in its pre-release testing.

Judge Edward Davila, however, has reduced the scope of the class action lawsuit, though he has denied Apple’s motion to dismiss the class action lawsuit.


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