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Internal Apple memo says software fix for MacBook Air displays coming

post #1 of 24
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A memo allegedly leaked from Apple's internal company support system confirms display issues experienced by some owners of the new MacBook Air, and says that an upcoming software update will fix the problems.

The purported memo, obtained by Boy Genius Report, acknowledges that Apple is aware of the issue and is "working on a solution" in the form of an upcoming software update. The company notes that customers have reported horizontal screen flickering on the 13-inch model, while users of both the 11- and 13-inch notebooks have reported that the screen fades to light colors after waking from sleep.

The note claims that the causes of both the flickering and fading issues have been "isolated," but does not indicate when Apple might release the software update to address the problems.

Apple representatives are also instructed to have customers attempt a resolution that involves closing the MacBook Air lid, waiting 10 seconds, and then re-opening the lid to wake the computer up. Doing so forces the display to power cycle, and should resolve the issue.

The MacBook Air screen flickering issue gained attention earlier this week. Users on Apple's support forums have also reported vertical lines and odd colors on their screens, as well as freezing issues and trouble with the new instant-on feature.

Some have speculated that the display problems on the new MacBook Air models could be caused by the logic board of the hardware.



The new 11.6- and 13.3-inch MacBook Air models were released last month, and represent Apple's thinnest and lightest notebooks. The new, smaller 11.6-inch model has a starting price of just $999, and all models rely on the Nvidia GeForce 320M for graphics capabilities.
post #2 of 24
"Apple Internal Use Only -- Issue/Investigation in Progress -- Confidential Information -- Do Not Disclose Externally"

Oops.
post #3 of 24
what amazes me the most about this (and the 27" imac issue) is that a simple software update fixes the issue...there's no hardware change required
post #4 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by doyourownthing View Post

what amazes me the most about this (and the 27" imac issue) is that a simple software update fixes the issue...there's no hardware change required

And yet the trolls we climbing the walls the last two days claiming Apple doesnt do any QC and that Apple should check every device they build. Pure foolishness.
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post #5 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

And yet the trolls we climbing the walls the last two days claiming Apple doesnt do any QC and that Apple should check every device they build. Pure foolishness.

Yes, trolls jut love to feed on this kind of stuff. Yet, they conveniently leave the room when Apple issues an update or makes any attempt to fix it sooner than later. How many other PC makers resolve issues in such a quick turnaround time? That's the nice part about Apple products. They take care of you after you leave the door.
post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by doyourownthing View Post

what amazes me the most about this (and the 27" imac issue) is that a simple software update fixes the issue...there's no hardware change required

It could be one of those circumstances where the patch is only recommended for those experiencing the problem. If you are not having the problem you shouldn't patch it. A problem could be caused by a timing issue or a chip not being as fast as expected. Sometimes the solution is to simply under clock the performance a bit to overcome a hardware issue.

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post #7 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

Apple shouldn't have to issue and update for something that is a few weeks old. Thats the issue. Everything with Apple is always "isolated" yet they do things like give away millions of free iPhone bumpers or have to issue firmware updates for an entire line of systems. That isn't isolated. If it was isolated it wouldn't be a firmware or logic board issue it would be a bad batch of hardware which would require a replacement for a small percentage of hardware.

Every component is built with tolerances. It’s not uncommon that enough of these tolerances can add up to a real issue affecting a subset of devices. This stuff can’t be easily tested for in mass quantities.

Companies try by slowly building up production, but variances that end up only appearing after usage and that require a SW update are not going to be found without excessive testing on an excessive number of machines. You get to a point and you have to say this ready to ship, but unless you want to excessive “real world” testing on each and every item you aren’t going to know for sure.

It’s the nature of CE, the difference if Apple is scrutinized a lot more than other companies, likely sells a lot of a given SKU in a specific time frame, and all this exaggerated by the internet, but what percentage of people have really been affected?
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post #8 of 24
Dear Trolls,

I have the 13 inch macbook air late 2010, and have experienced none of the discussed so-called video problems.

Therefore, the problem doesn't exist.


If you think that is a stupid statement, it is as stupid as drawing a conclusion from an unknown number of problematic hardware.

Perhaps there is one defective unit. Millions produced, one defect.

TIME TO RIOT!
post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

Apple shouldn't have to issue and update for something that is a few weeks old. Thats the issue. Everything with Apple is always "isolated" yet they do things like give away millions of free iPhone bumpers or have to issue firmware updates for an entire line of systems. That isn't isolated. If it was isolated it wouldn't be a firmware or logic board issue it would be a bad batch of hardware which would require a replacement for a small percentage of hardware.

You have no idea how big of a problem this is. All you know is from a few postings on the Internet of people having problems. That's it. And in typical hysteria fashion, you assume it is widespread, thus Apple should be nailed to the wall for putting out a product not fit for consumers. You very well know that.

I have no idea how many of the new MBA's have been sold so I would be guessing. But considering all the great reviews, I would think it is in the hundreds-of-thousands by now. With that many sold of ANY product, there is bound to be some issues.

My post was not referring to whether or not the product is defective. I was referring to the customer-service that Apple provides the consumer and they will go out of their way to make sure the fix the problem quickly and to everyone's satisfaction. Not good enough, return the unit. My personal opinion of how good a company is is not based solely on the product, but how well they take care of you after the purchase. Based on Apple's #1 in customer-service, I know I'll be taken care of if something goes wrong. Case closed.

Few if any of the other players do that, yet you don't see them getting getting put into the fire like you folks do with Apple.

Just like "antenna-gate", you'll rally the village with torches, march to Apple's castle, and realize by the time you get there the problem was solved - or in many instances - realize the problem wasn't actually as big as it was made out to be. You'll wobble back home to eat your humble-pie... if anything, only to wait at the chance to jump on Apple's back again.
post #10 of 24
Slow news day there AI. That you have to post "We find a site that has a memo that they shouldn't have that says that Apple knows about a problem and is going to fix it. Eventually"


Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

Apple shouldn't have to issue and update for something that is a few weeks old.

So there are never these problems with your company. You sell millions of computers, phones etc and they are all 100% perfect. Never a problem. I suppose that's because you make every one of them by hand, yourself.

Quote:
Everything with Apple is always "isolated" yet they do things like give away millions of free iPhone bumpers

Giving away millions of free bumpers was a PR stunt to appease the masses that were following the media like lemmings in believing the trumped up Antennagate stories. If they had required folks to come in and have every phone tested to get a free case it would have been a nightmare in the stores and folks would have B**** and Moaned about how it costs Apple pennies to make the damn things so they should just give one to everyone with a phone. They knew this so they did it.

Quote:
If it was isolated it wouldn't be a firmware or logic board issue it would be a bad batch of hardware which would require a replacement for a small percentage of hardware.

Wow. I don't even know who to reply to that one.

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(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

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post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katonah View Post

Dear Trolls,

I have the 13 inch macbook air late 2010, and have experienced none of the discussed so-called video problems.

Therefore, the problem doesn't exist.


If you think that is a stupid statement, it is as stupid as drawing a conclusion from an unknown number of problematic hardware.

Perhaps there is one defective unit. Millions produced, one defect.

TIME TO RIOT!

Your statement will fall on deaf ears. You see, the trolls that infest this forum suffer from an ailment which results in "selective dissemination of information". Meaning, they will only take only certain pieces of information and make grand assumptions (i.e. guesses) and convince themselves it is fact.

The only remedy I'm aware of to resolve that is to banish them from society as they tend to grow - like mold - if left unchecked.
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

And yet the trolls we climbing the walls the last two days claiming Apple doesnt do any QC and that Apple should check every device they build. Pure foolishness.

As someone who has often made large scale purchases of Apple equipment, I have to ask you to please think before you type.

Better quality control and better testing minimizes problems. It is foolish to expect zero failure rates, but it is not foolish to expect "reasonable" failure rates. Systemic design flaws have often creeped into Apple products and it is the end users who have to deal with it while Apple builds their stockpile of cash while denying any problem exists.

Try waiting for a critical software/hardware fix for a thousand computers and see how you feel about Apple then.
post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

Stop calling people that are trying to have a logical conversation a troll, you sound like an ass. Grow the hell up.

Stop making grand assumptions until you have all the information to make an informative, sound decision. Somehow, you have come to a conclusion that Apple has put out a defective product after just being introduced based solely from a handful of personal postings and a few you-tube videos.

As usual, you and the other known band of preachers come here not to have a logical conversation, but to simply provoke.

If I sound like an ass, I'll take that as high-praise coming from you skater.

I'll be buying a new MBA. The hugely-few statements being written about this subject will not deter me. I seems to not deter the (hundreds-of?) thousands of buyers either.

However, it will have me take notice to see how Apple resolves this to take care of even those unfortunate folks. From the sound of it, looks like Apple is (as usual) stepping up to the plate.
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldenclaw View Post

As someone who has often made large scale purchases of Apple equipment, I have to ask you to please think before you type.

Better quality control and better testing minimizes problems. It is foolish to expect zero failure rates, but it is not foolish to expect "reasonable" failure rates. Systemic design flaws have often creeped into Apple products and it is the end users who have to deal with it while Apple builds their stockpile of cash while denying any problem exists.

Try waiting for a critical software/hardware fix for a thousand computers and see how you feel about Apple then.

I think you seriously misread what solipsism was trying to say. The word "we" in their comment should have been "were."
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post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldenclaw View Post

As someone who has often made large scale purchases of Apple equipment, I have to ask you to please think before you type.

Better quality control and better testing minimizes problems. It is foolish to expect zero failure rates, but it is not foolish to expect "reasonable" failure rates. Systemic design flaws have often creeped into Apple products and it is the end users who have to deal with it while Apple builds their stockpile of cash while denying any problem exists.

Try waiting for a critical software/hardware fix for a thousand computers and see how you feel about Apple then.

These conversations always come done to subjective terms. You say reasonable, but that cant be defined. Is 0.1% of a product a reasonable number? Thats 1 in 1000. If they produce 5 million Macs this quarter that is a half-million with issues. a half million of anything is a lot. So is this reasonable value based on the total sold, a finite upper limit regardless of the number of units sold, or based solely on the rate of error for a particular user? If you choose the latter from the customer PoV are you then assuming that if you buy one machine and it has an issue that all are flawed and all should be recalled (as we heard after the iPhone 4 release)?

By the way, what IT department would buy 1000s of a product that only came on the market a couple weeks ago? Speaking of QC and my previous statements about starting small and building up your production line to minimize and catch potential issues, companies should also be doing this when it comes to purchase orders. First you test a couple devices internally to IT to see if they will work within the confines of the companys dynamics, then you release to a select group of users to see if they will work for the employees, only after that do you start rolling out the device, but you still do it systematically.
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post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by justflybob View Post

I think you seriously misread what solipsism was trying to say.

No I read it just fine.


Quote:
By the way, what IT department would buy 1000s of a product that only came on the market a couple weeks ago?

I never said that I bought an thousand MacBook Airs, nor should you have assumed such. The discussion is about Apple's track record with products and the habit for posters here to call people "whiny trolls" if you complain about a problem with an Apple product you just purchased and expect to work.

If I have one buggy or defective Apple product, I handle it accordingly and don't jump to conclusions. No big deal, I'll get it fixed under warranty.

If I see a hundred Apple products with an indentical problem, I treat is as a problem that needs to be addressed by Apple on a larger scale.

It is however really damn ignorant to assume that just because a problem hasn't happened to you that none exists.

In fairness to Apple, this is not confined to them. I had to live through the problem with massive numbers of Dell computer motherboards failing and it took years for them to even fully disclose the problem.

People need to turn fanboy mode off for a minute to think clearly.
post #17 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

These conversations always come done to subjective terms. You say “reasonable”, but that can’t be defined. Is 0.1% of a product a reasonable number? That’s 1 in 1000. If they produce 5 million Macs this quarter that is a half-million with issues. a half million of anything is a lot.....

Whoops-- .1% is indeed 1 in a 1000, but that's 5,000 problems per 5,000,000 quarter, not half a million-- which would be .1 times the total, or 1 in 10-- which I don't think even a QC challenged Apple would be stooping to.
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post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldenclaw View Post

No I read it just fine....

...

People need to turn fanboy mode off for a minute to think clearly.

Thanks for straightening me out on that. I promise to think clearly while I add you to my "ignore" list.
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post #19 of 24
I wouldn't call byself a fanboy but have liked apple products since the II+.
That said, recently they have released a number of items, both hardware and software that didn't seem to be tested fully.

I don't know any other vendor does any better but my impression is that they might be rushing things out the door just to stay ahead of everyone else.
post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjwal View Post

I wouldn't call byself a fanboy but have liked apple products since the II+.
That said, recently they have released a number of items, both hardware and software that didn't seem to be tested fully.

I don't know any other vendor does any better but my impression is that they might be rushing things out the door just to stay ahead of everyone else.

I would tend to agree with that. In all fairness to manufacturers, products seem to have increased in complexity by quantum leaps. And in that complexity there seems to be an even higher level of possible configurations that may or may not drastically alter the end user experience.

That being said, the fact that Microsoft released Office for Mac 2011 without syncing capabilities just boggles the mind. It's a trend these days to rush product development and delivery - neither or which will improve the end user experience in the long run.
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post #21 of 24
My 13" Air does not have any problems ... I am quite pleased with it
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjwal View Post

I wouldn't call byself a fanboy but have liked apple products since the II+.
That said, recently they have released a number of items, both hardware and software that didn't seem to be tested fully.

I don't know any other vendor does any better but my impression is that they might be rushing things out the door just to stay ahead of everyone else.

My sense is that people have been saying almost precisely that about Apple for, I dunno, about the last 25 years?

For instance, the original Macs were fanless, which led to chronic overheating problems (sound familiar?) The PowerMac 6200 was famously terrible, Rev 1 G3 towers had drive problems, the original flat panel iMac overheated and shut down, etc., etc.

I don't know if Apple is on par with the industry when it comes to hardware problems, but I don't think they're getting worse.
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post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

Stop calling people that are trying to have a logical conversation a troll, you sound like an ass. Grow the hell up.


And like you don't?

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post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by extremeskater View Post

One of the problems is Apple is a victim of their own hype. You know it "just works", "its like using your toaster". Nothing just works.

Also many talk about how Apple uses better hardware then everyone else. In many cases that simply isn't true. You can pick out 20 iMacs and using a simple example could have three different vendors when it comes to the slot loaded drives.

Clearly with the iMac issue and maybe this one they are using different logic boards or different memory on those logic board, with the iMac they were not only using different logic boards but down clocking a ATI 2600XT to a 2600GT due to heat issues.

With the first gen Alu iMac that was released I believe in late Jul or early Aug it took them until that November to resolve the issue. Thats a log freaking time for someone that has a system lockup daily.

I had that iMac and I was lucky enough to have the logic board that was did not have issues but friends of mine weren't as lucky and you could get that iMac to lockup at will and Apple was calling it an isolated issue. It was far from isolated and they denied the issue for a long time.

You and I have both been long time Apple owners and if you go back in time and really look at all the issues regarding screen, firmware and heat issues there are alot. Far more then I have ever had with any Sony, HP or custom built system I own.

People say MS releases their software in beta I always feel the same when it comes to Apple and hardware.

This isn't me ripping on Apple or defending anyone else its just how I see the situation based on my long history of ownership. This is why I almost never buy a first gen Apple product or when they release software I never upgread until about version .4. I actually do that when it comes to any software of hardware.

The only recent exception was the iPad.


"...could have three different vendors when it comes to the slot loaded drives. ..."

The number of manufacturers is irrelevant if all the drives are built to the required specifications and tolerances. Having multiple vendors for components is actually a very good idea to insure an adequate supply and as a safeguard in the event of a QC problem with any one source.

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