Debunking retail rumors, Apple says its stores are equipped to repair new MacBook Pros

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware
Reports claiming Apple Stores can't repair the 2016 MacBook Pro because of a lack of diagnostic tools are false, as AppleInsider has been told that stores are fully equipped and trained to perform all required diagnostics and repairs necessary.




An account emerged at enthusiast site Macotakara claiming that several utilities needed to diagnose and repair the 2016 MacBook Pro weren't available at Apple Stores and other authorized service venues. According to the report, the "Apple Service Toolkit" was scheduled to be updated on Dec. 13, 2016, but has not yet been altered to accommodate the new models.

Initial queries to high-volume Apple retail store staff were met with light dismissal, with accounts reporting that staff training was complete, and gear is on-hand. AppleInsider's own retail sources indicated that most of the service inquiries for the MacBook Pro are either exchanged on the spot within 10 days of original purchase, or replaced by the Apple Store under direction of Apple corporate, with the faulty unit returned to Apple engineers for evaluation.

AppleInsider has also been told unequivocally that the report is wrong by our contacts within Apple corporate.

"Apple stores have all of the software and hardware they need to successfully accomplish repairs on the new MacBook Pro," a source said, elaborating on the denial. "We do, at our discretion, utilize depot-level facilities for repair on both iOS devices and Macs that may be beyond the scope of a local Apple store for any reason, including volume in-store."

While the assorted software tools required for service were not named specifically, Apple has confirmed that at least some repairs can be completed in-store, if not all.

Additonally, AppleInsider has learned that three parts considered as "likely break-points" are held as stock at stores for repairs, with quantities depending on store volume. One of 11 stores we queried said that they had only one part in any quantity.

As it has been for decades, if a specific repair part beyond the likely repairs is needed, it arrives overnight by FedEx, with the "core" needing to be sent back to Cupertino for analysis and refurbishment, as possible.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 57
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,007member
    I would believe that they have the appropriate diagnostic tools, but repairs?  Considering that a lot of components in the new MBPs are soldered or glued down, are they really able to do local repairs?   I would doubt that.  Do they even have the capability of replacing a battery?    Watch the iFixIt videos - it's a nightmare.  IIRC, they couldn't take the machine apart without breaking something.  

    (I had a recent debate with a photography tech writer over this.  He actually preferred machines in which the user can't change the battery, storage and memory because he said those were failure points.   But I hate the fact that Apple has taken this out of our control.   I think the design of my late-2008 MBP with the door that revealed an accessible hard drive and battery and removing a few screws to get to the memory chips was a far superior design and I refuse to believe that Apple could not accomplish this again if they really wanted to.)   That late-2008 MBP just died on me and I bought the new MBP, but it's left a very bad taste in my mouth:  Apple was always expensive, but I never felt like the company was ripping us off.   Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  And $1200 to upgrade from a 512MB to 2TB SSD?   ($1400 from 256MB).   Combine that with the non-upgradability of the machine and Apple turning into a sloth when it comes to meaningful new products and upgrades and I really don't have very good feelings about Apple anymore.  
    dysamoriaSpamSandwich
  • Reply 2 of 57
    nhtnht Posts: 3,368member
    zoetmb said:
    I would believe that they have the appropriate diagnostic tools, but repairs?  Considering that a lot of components in the new MBPs are soldered or glued down, are they really able to do local repairs?   I would doubt that.  Do they even have the capability of replacing a battery?    Watch the iFixIt videos - it's a nightmare.  IIRC, they couldn't take the machine apart without breaking something.  

    (I had a recent debate with a photography tech writer over this.  He actually preferred machines in which the user can't change the battery, storage and memory because he said those were failure points.   But I hate the fact that Apple has taken this out of our control.   I think the design of my late-2008 MBP with the door that revealed an accessible hard drive and battery and removing a few screws to get to the memory chips was a far superior design and I refuse to believe that Apple could not accomplish this again if they really wanted to.)   That late-2008 MBP just died on me and I bought the new MBP, but it's left a very bad taste in my mouth:  Apple was always expensive, but I never felt like the company was ripping us off.   Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  And $1200 to upgrade from a 512MB to 2TB SSD?   ($1400 from 256MB).   Combine that with the non-upgradability of the machine and Apple turning into a sloth when it comes to meaningful new products and upgrades and I really don't have very good feelings about Apple anymore.  

    Samsung 960 Pro 2TB PCIe NVMe $1207.58.
     
    https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-960-PRO-Internal-MZ-V6P1T0BW/dp/B01LY3Y9PH?th=1

    I don't think $1400 is a bad price.  512 is probably the sweet spot though.

    Your laptop lasted 8 years and you're bitching about how Apple sucks just because you don't agree with Apple engineers on how best to build laptops?  With an 8 year replacement cycle I'm not even sure DELL cares about having your business...your next major purchase won't be until 2024...and you're calling Apple sloths?

    LMAO.
    edited January 9 longpathStrangeDaysredefilerlkrupppulseimageswatto_cobrafastasleepSpamSandwich
  • Reply 3 of 57
    appexappex Posts: 468member
    Great, but I want a removable SSD (besides RAM and, if possible, microprocessor) for many obvious reasons.
    edited January 9 SpamSandwich
  • Reply 4 of 57
    nht said:
      Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  
    Localtalk Boxes and cabling
    ADB keyboards
    AAUI adapters
    SCSI terminators
    DIN-8 serial cabling
    DB-45 SCSI adapters
    DB-15 to VGA adapters
    The first shift to USB cables
    DVI to ADC adapters
    FireWire cables
    30-pin cables and accessories
    Lightning cables and accessories.

    And NOW you think that the power adapter extension cord omission means that Apple has been taken over by accountants?

    macxpressredefilerjSnivelywatto_cobrafastasleepSpamSandwich
  • Reply 5 of 57
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 904member
    People have all kind of opinions for everything. But, for 2016 macbook pro, one thing I admire is light/portable. It is blessing for millions of college kids who everyday running around from classes to classes with their heavy backpack. I wish Apple put atleast 3 USB Type-C ports(one on each side for easy charging) on non strip version of macbook pro. Price, yes bit higher but if it lasts like most previous macbook pro out their, it is way cheaper(total cost of ownership) over Windows laptops out their. If it was possible, Apple could have provided replaceable SSD, RAM and Battery. Now a days windows laptops do away with self replaceable parts.
    edited January 9 macxpress
  • Reply 6 of 57
    abster2coreabster2core Posts: 2,501member
    nht said:
    zoetmb said:
    …And $1200 to upgrade from a 512MB to 2TB SSD?   ($1400 from 256MB).   Combine that with the non-upgradability of the machine and Apple turning into a sloth when it comes to meaningful new products and upgrades and I really don't have very good feelings about Apple anymore.  

    Samsung 960 Pro 2TB PCIe NVMe $1207.58.
     
    https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-960-PRO-Internal-MZ-V6P1T0BW/dp/B01LY3Y9PH?th=1

    I don't think $1400 is a bad price.  512 is probably the sweet spot though.

    Your laptop lasted 8 years and you're bitching about how Apple sucks just because you don't agree with Apple engineers on how best to build laptops?  With an 8 year replacement cycle I'm not even sure DELL cares about having your business...your next major purchase won't be until 2024...and you're calling Apple sloths?

    LMAO.
    Right on! 

    Better yet, as your link (in color) stated, it "Usually ships within 1 to 2 months." And 'Gift Wrapped' if he so wished.
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 7 of 57
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,540member
    It would be absolutely foolish for Apple to release any product without the ability to support it in their stores. Thats just asking for trouble and making the lives of employees in their stores very miserable. To think that Apple would even do this is just nonsense. You don't release products without the ability to properly support them. This is just one part of the development of a new product, maybe something people don't even think about when Apple is designing/engineering a new or even updated product. 
    StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 57
    zoetmb said:
    I would believe that they have the appropriate diagnostic tools, but repairs?  Considering that a lot of components in the new MBPs are soldered or glued down, are they really able to do local repairs?   I would doubt that.  Do they even have the capability of replacing a battery?    Watch the iFixIt videos - it's a nightmare.  IIRC, they couldn't take the machine apart without breaking something.  

    (I had a recent debate with a photography tech writer over this.  He actually preferred machines in which the user can't change the battery, storage and memory because he said those were failure points.   But I hate the fact that Apple has taken this out of our control.   I think the design of my late-2008 MBP with the door that revealed an accessible hard drive and battery and removing a few screws to get to the memory chips was a far superior design and I refuse to believe that Apple could not accomplish this again if they really wanted to.)   That late-2008 MBP just died on me and I bought the new MBP, but it's left a very bad taste in my mouth:  Apple was always expensive, but I never felt like the company was ripping us off.   Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  And $1200 to upgrade from a 512MB to 2TB SSD?   ($1400 from 256MB).   Combine that with the non-upgradability of the machine and Apple turning into a sloth when it comes to meaningful new products and upgrades and I really don't have very good feelings about Apple anymore.  
    If you want the highest performance and energy transfer, it means soldered chips, not swappable stock drives and DIMMs. Because I buy my Macs decked out and never look back, nor ever perform repairs myself at work, I prefer prioritizing for performance and weight over user-accessibility. So does Apple. DIYers aren't the primary use case here.
    edited January 9 macxpressRayz2016chiapulseimagessphericwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 57
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 3,582member
    zoetmb said:
    But I hate the fact that Apple has taken this out of our control.   I think the design of my late-2008 MBP with the door that revealed an accessible hard drive and battery and removing a few screws to get to the memory chips was a far superior design and I refuse to believe that Apple could not accomplish this again if they really wanted to.)   
    This is the same, tired story that keeps recycling.

    Most users... by my guess, 99% of users... will NEVER open up a laptop after purchase.  Never.  Why then should Apple (or any vendor) go through the extra engineering to accommodate the 1%?  

    There's a lot of things from the past in computing that was "easier" to do for the user.  Hard drives failed a lot.  Batteries needed often replacement.  RAM chips were often faulty.  Sure, we needed easier access to those components, if not for the user, then for the service tech.  Now, it's not the case anymore. 

    Let it go...  integration is where everything is going and nothing is going to change that.  Many gladly give up the thicker, failure-prone connections for more reliable, lighter, efficient engineering.  
    macxpressStrangeDayschiapulseimageswatto_cobrafastasleepjSnively
  • Reply 10 of 57

    appex said:
    Great, but I want a removable SSD (besides RAM and, if possible, microprocessor) for many obvious reasons.
    Great, but you're getting a Dell.
    macxpressRayz2016pulseimageswatto_cobraSpamSandwich
  • Reply 11 of 57
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 657member
    You took all the context out of his post. He isn't whining. He is giving his opinion.

    It is not the price per se. It's also the fact that you have to decide how much SSD you need for the life of the machine at the time of purchase. That makes it 1000+ dollars on top of the purchase price of an already expensive machine.

    That Samsung SSD will come down in price, the Apple SSD probably won't see as much discounting.

    That's my interpretation of his post and I agree with it. I am not whining either.

    'LMAO'?  

    That was just unnecessary.
    farjamed
  • Reply 12 of 57
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 657member
    nht said:
      Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  
    Localtalk Boxes and cabling
    ADB keyboards
    AAUI adapters
    SCSI terminators
    DIN-8 serial cabling
    DB-45 SCSI adapters
    DB-15 to VGA adapters
    The first shift to USB cables
    DVI to ADC adapters
    FireWire cables
    30-pin cables and accessories
    Lightning cables and accessories.

    And NOW you think that the power adapter extension cord omission means that Apple has been taken over by accountants?

    It is not a question of 'NOW'. It's a feeling he has and he just gave that example. It's more a question of things building up over time and the result of this latest move. I think that's pretty clear from his post.
  • Reply 13 of 57
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,540member
    avon b7 said:
    nht said:
      Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  
    Localtalk Boxes and cabling
    ADB keyboards
    AAUI adapters
    SCSI terminators
    DIN-8 serial cabling
    DB-45 SCSI adapters
    DB-15 to VGA adapters
    The first shift to USB cables
    DVI to ADC adapters
    FireWire cables
    30-pin cables and accessories
    Lightning cables and accessories.

    And NOW you think that the power adapter extension cord omission means that Apple has been taken over by accountants?

    It is not a question of 'NOW'. It's a feeling he has and he just gave that example. It's more a question of things building up over time and the result of this latest move. I think that's pretty clear from his post.
    And when everything switches over to mostly USB-C all of this will be a non-issue. USB-C peripherals are coming. You know the dongle/USB-C cable thing going into buying a 2016 MacBook Pro so I don't see why its an issue other than just something to bitch about. If you're not ready to make the switch then don't buy one until things are ready for you. 
    edited January 9 emig647StrangeDayschiapulseimageswatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 57
    zoetmb said:
    I would believe that they have the appropriate diagnostic tools, but repairs?  Considering that a lot of components in the new MBPs are soldered or glued down, are they really able to do local repairs?   I would doubt that.  Do they even have the capability of replacing a battery?    Watch the iFixIt videos - it's a nightmare.  IIRC, they couldn't take the machine apart without breaking something.  

    (I had a recent debate with a photography tech writer over this.  He actually preferred machines in which the user can't change the battery, storage and memory because he said those were failure points.   But I hate the fact that Apple has taken this out of our control.   I think the design of my late-2008 MBP with the door that revealed an accessible hard drive and battery and removing a few screws to get to the memory chips was a far superior design and I refuse to believe that Apple could not accomplish this again if they really wanted to.)   That late-2008 MBP just died on me and I bought the new MBP, but it's left a very bad taste in my mouth:  Apple was always expensive, but I never felt like the company was ripping us off.   Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  And $1200 to upgrade from a 512MB to 2TB SSD?   ($1400 from 256MB).   Combine that with the non-upgradability of the machine and Apple turning into a sloth when it comes to meaningful new products and upgrades and I really don't have very good feelings about Apple anymore.  
    What's your particular use-case?

    When I bought my first MacBook Pro (in 2009), my major decision point was getting the most powerful CPU and an appropriate level of RAM and HDD space. Back then (as you mention) you could upgrade the RAM and HDD so it was less critical to make a final call on these items at the time of purchase. 

    By the time I upgraded it in 2012, the RAM was no longer using a slot and had to be decided at the time or purchase. This led to my usual advice to colleagues and friends as whatever is non-upgradeable  you Top-Out. So, I bought with the 16GB RAM limit in mind.

    Now, I simply add the SSD to that same decision path. What do I need on the machine to make it workable. I carry my work data on an external drive to reduce the impact of a laptop failure on my work (I used to use Dell for my Work Laptops but they failed so often it became embarrassing to show up to a customer with a dead laptop). 

    My personal data sits on a RAID Array (and a portable one when I travel) so in my use-case this works out as my SSD requirements being around 1TB (OS, Apps, VMs and some In-Flight Data Storage). I wouldn't see that requirement increasing over the life of the machine as it's been pretty much the same for the last 5 years.

    So, I'm less concerned about the non-upgradeability of the device and more concerned about how it fits into my Use-Case.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 57
    appexappex Posts: 468member
    avon b7 said:
    You took all the context out of his post. He isn't whining. He is giving his opinion.

    It is not the price per se. It's also the fact that you have to decide how much SSD you need for the life of the machine at the time of purchase. That makes it 1000+ dollars on top of the purchase price of an already expensive machine.

    That Samsung SSD will come down in price, the Apple SSD probably won't see as much discounting.

    That's my interpretation of his post and I agree with it. I am not whining either.

    'LMAO'?  

    That was just unnecessary.
    Not only that. SSD and RAM upgrades from Apple may cost 2 to 3 times more than the very same product from retailers like Amazon. So, yes, I want to buy the lowest configuration from Apple and upgrade from elsewhere right the same day or years later.
  • Reply 16 of 57
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 657member
    macxpress said:
    avon b7 said:
    nht said:
      Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  
    Localtalk Boxes and cabling
    ADB keyboards
    AAUI adapters
    SCSI terminators
    DIN-8 serial cabling
    DB-45 SCSI adapters
    DB-15 to VGA adapters
    The first shift to USB cables
    DVI to ADC adapters
    FireWire cables
    30-pin cables and accessories
    Lightning cables and accessories.

    And NOW you think that the power adapter extension cord omission means that Apple has been taken over by accountants?

    It is not a question of 'NOW'. It's a feeling he has and he just gave that example. It's more a question of things building up over time and the result of this latest move. I think that's pretty clear from his post.
    And when everything switches over to mostly USB-C all of this will be a non-issue. USB-C peripherals are coming. You know the dongle/USB-C cable thing going into buying a 2016 MacBook Pro so I don't see why its an issue other than just something to bitch about. If you're not ready to make the switch then don't buy one until things are ready for you. 
    True. USB-C is coming. It is the future. No one has issues with it. Having ONLY USB-C is another matter and you will find a lot of division of opinion over that. It isn't whining. 

    The existing park of non-USB-C ports will ensure devices for those ports will continue to be made for a long while to come.

    TC has already indicated that the iMac needs more I/O than the MBP (whatever that means). All I've seen from the people that defend this wholesale switch is that USB-C is thay it is the future and we have to live with it. Really?

    As if it were as simple as that and users can't express there opinions without someone screaming 'troll'. 

    This switch has less to do with technology and more to do with an obsession for thinness. It has a knock on effect as it also converts them into 'disposable' Macs. Disposable in what sense? This article says Apple has the tools to repair the new systems. We already know that the repairability of them is low. Being able to repair them (even if nobody has actually officially said how much can be repaired) is secondary in a disposable context. What matters is if the cost of repair is worthwhile. Do we know that? I haven't seen anyone speaking about repair of these machines as the damage wasn't covered by warranty (negligent use etc). We will have to wait a year or two to see how that one works out but if one of these fails out of warranty we may find that the repair (if possible) might not make much sense.

    Nothing really new in that sense. When washing machines went 'intelligent', changing a failed logic board often cost too much to make repair worthwhile.

    The difference is that washing machines don't cost anywhere near as much as MBPs so failure out of warranty may cause some pain. The design doesn't help. Replacing a failed battery involves more than changing the battery itself.

    Amazingly, people try to defend these design decisions not only by claiming it is the price of thinness (which, if you want thinness, is at least valid) but by saying Apple products tend to last longer. The reality is that it is impossible to know today, how these machines will fare in two, three or four years. The last time I checked Apple's page for warranty extensions due to known issues, it wasn't short. Add to that, other issues that Apple doesn't define as 'known' and you realise it would be absolutely stupid to evaluate reliability of these models as not likely to fail because it's made by Apple. We just can't know that.

    If Mac users (not trolls, whiners or idiots) want to change the direction of Apple's hardware roadmap, they won't get anywhere by saying nothing. Feedback goes into a black hole. It is not transparent. The Internet is a very good feedback mechanism and Apple has it ear to the ground. That's why Schiller came out so quickly when the backlash started.

    It doesn't even matter if you think no end of negative opinions will change things. People have their say, this is a discussion forum on Appleinsider. It's a good place to speak.

    Unless I'm mistaken, the first attempt under Jobs to dump FireWire on a model also received a user backlash and FireWire came back on a later model (just speaking from memory).

    These new machines cannot physically accommodate the other ports but we have already heard that there is possibly division within Apple on whether this 'thin at any cost' route was the right way to go. Not in the absolute sense but in the sense that there is room for a thicker, heavier machine in the same lineup with a bigger port spread.

    The problem is that such a machine (especially if it were user upgradeable) might very well take the sales spotlight from the current model. Bigger, heavier, thicker, slower, more repairable but more popular?

    You can disagree with me but it is very, very clear that a lot of users would actually buy into such a machine.
    edited January 9 farjamedpulseimages
  • Reply 17 of 57
    zoetmb said:
    I would believe that they have the appropriate diagnostic tools, but repairs?  Considering that a lot of components in the new MBPs are soldered or glued down, are they really able to do local repairs?   I would doubt that.  Do they even have the capability of replacing a battery?    Watch the iFixIt videos - it's a nightmare.  IIRC, they couldn't take the machine apart without breaking something.  

    (I had a recent debate with a photography tech writer over this.  He actually preferred machines in which the user can't change the battery, storage and memory because he said those were failure points.   But I hate the fact that Apple has taken this out of our control.   I think the design of my late-2008 MBP with the door that revealed an accessible hard drive and battery and removing a few screws to get to the memory chips was a far superior design and I refuse to believe that Apple could not accomplish this again if they really wanted to.)   That late-2008 MBP just died on me and I bought the new MBP, but it's left a very bad taste in my mouth:  Apple was always expensive, but I never felt like the company was ripping us off.   Leaving out the power adapter extension cord and not putting a few USB adapters (or a coupon for a few) in the box feels like Apple has been taken over by accountants.  And $1200 to upgrade from a 512MB to 2TB SSD?   ($1400 from 256MB).   Combine that with the non-upgradability of the machine and Apple turning into a sloth when it comes to meaningful new products and upgrades and I really don't have very good feelings about Apple anymore.  
    I really wouldn't want to rely on a machine that isn't easily serviceable to do my "bread and butter" type work. If I am relying on using the machine for work that I get paid for and I can't fix it in a couple of hours then I would just buy a new machine.  I don't know how long it typically takes for Apple to turn around repairs but if it takes a few days it isn't worth waiting on when work delays cause $$ loss.
  • Reply 18 of 57
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 4,536member
    appex said:
    Great, but I want a removable SSD (besides RAM and, if possible, microprocessor) for many obvious reasons.
    There are numerous non-Apple solutions. Move on,  be happy, hate no more. I really don’t understand why you even posted when you know what you want will NEVER, EVER happen.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 57
    Apple is playing symantics with you. No matter. The practice of "servicing" your broken MacBook pros, by exchanging them with "new" (well new to you,) but otherwise REFURBISHED...laptops, may becoming illegal in some states. Apple will be forced to replace with like value, as this is sometimes not happening, or is questionable. 
  • Reply 20 of 57
    nhtnht Posts: 3,368member
    mikethemartian said:

    Blah blah blah.
    Or you could actually act like a pro and either keep your own spare or join Apple's Joint Venture program for business customers that includes loaners when your covered equipment is in for repairs.

    http://www.apple.com/retail/business/jointventure/terms.html

    No wait, what am I thinking?  Better to just complain about how Apple is evil.
    watto_cobra
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