Apple is finally acknowledging the existence of small cracks in older white plastic MacBooks. According to AppleInsider, the Mac maker issued a bulletin to its authorized service providers last month that identified four key areas of the case that are prone to hairline cracking. Although Apple admits to the flaw and is willing to cover some of the repair expenses, there are some stipulations.
The bulletin asked providers to inspect the MacBook carefully to determine if the cracks could have been caused by dropping the notebook or by other types of user-inflicted damage. Should providers determine the user is not at fault for the cracks, the provider can escalate the notebook for coverage by Apple, even if the 1-year warranty has expired.
This bulletin essentially reverses Apple’s stance on replacing the bottom casing of notebooks with these types of hairline cracks. In fact, reports from November indicated Apple was unwilling to cover repairs on the bottom casing of notebooks even though the company admitted to similar problems on the top portion of the casings containing the keyboard and palm rests.
The March bulletin identified the front portion of the case below the palm rests and the trackpad, the areas around the I/O ports, the back rear corners, and the back rear ventilation area as key areas that are prone to hairline cracking. Apple also suggested other areas of the case could be affected by the issue.
According to sources familiar with the matter, the black plastic 13-inch MacBooks that were discontinued last year are excluded from the coverage. Other members of the MacBook family are not excluded.
Apple transitioned the bulk of its notebook line to the more sturdy aluminum unibody enclosures last October, though the company still offers a version of its 13-inch white MacBook for $999.