Canadian Court OKs Settlement Over Defective MacBook Pros


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A Canadian court has approved a settlement over defective MacBook Pros. 

The case dates back to 2014, when a class-action suit was filed against Apple, alleging that its 2011 MacBook Pros suffered from graphics issues. Those affected are now eligible to recoup $175 CAD for their trouble, as well as a refund for any repair services they might have paid for.

The settlement is open to anyone who purchased a 15- or 17-inch 2011 MacBook Pro laptop in Quebec, or those who live in Quebec and own or owned one of those models.

A claims administrator has until the end of next week to update the settlement website, at which point all eligible buyers can submit claims and get their cash.

At issue are MacBook Pros with AMD-based graphics, which malfunctioned and made the displays unreadable.

“The computer was working fine, when all of a sudden the screen when completely blue,” one user wrote in a 2013 Apple forum post. “I had to force restart the computer. Since then, the screen has gone awry on numerous occasions—each time necessitating a hard reset.” 

Another person reported a “severe amount of horizontal distortion,” as well as a split screen (“the left side of the screen is on the right and vice versa”).

At the time, ZDNet—reporting on a similar case filed in the US—said the “lead-free solder used in the manufacturing process caused short circuiting, which caused the display to seemingly go haywire.” Apple was unresponsive, forcing those with out-of-warranty devices to pay hundreds to get their laptops fixed.

A Montreal-based PCMag staffer who is part of the class-action suit had no problems with his 2011 MacBook Pro for the first few years of use, but then encountered problems booting up his laptop. “I got the Apple logo and a loading bar that would progress to about one-third of the way through, and freeze there,” he says.

At this point, the MacBook was out of warranty, so Apple Support told him it would be cheaper to buy a new MacBook than replace the logic board. Instead, he went to a third-party repair shop, which had to swap out the battery in order to fix the logic board. But the new battery drained very quickly, and…