Well, this is disappointing. Apple’s 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar just received a score of 1/10 for repairability from iFixit, a private company with experts who troubleshoot and repair devices. Given, its very low score, it’s very unlikely for owners to have their laptops repaired easily if they broke them.
On its official website, iFixit published a teardown report on the late 2016 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar. In its introduction, the company right away addressed what it found when it disassembled the device, saying it discovered that Apple’s new laptop is indeed “thinner, lighter, faster” but is sadly less repairable than any other Pro laptops.
For the most part, the hardware specs really matched what Apple said about its latest MacBook offering when it launched the new iterations in late October. There is also a noticeable difference in the internal layout of components when compared with its predecessor’s internals.
After disassembling the components of the new MacBook Pro, iFixit gave the device a very disappointing rating of 1/10. In case you are wondering why this is so, the repair and components company found out a lot of very tricky stuff that make it very unlikely for one to repair certain parts of the laptop when they are damaged.
Perhaps the most difficult to replace component is the dynamic strip of OLED display called Touch Bar. When iFixit removed this part, it easily broke while it was being dismantled from the chassis. MacRumors has learned that even the flex cable that connects the Touch Bar to the mainboard was very difficult to remove since its wraps underneath the touch strip.
Another shocking discovery about the new MacBook Pro pertains to how the new speaker grilles just serve no function at all and are instead there for cosmetic reasons. The sound that is being produced is actually projected from the air vents on the sides of the device — a design feature that is not present in the MacBook Pro variant with function keys.
In the checklist iFixit made for the different components of the laptop, the company mentioned a lot more of repairability issues. The pentalobe screws are said to be unnecessarily difficult. The battery assembly is solidly glued to the case, while the processor, RAM and flash memory are soldered to the logic board. Finally, fixing a broken power switch was proven to be difficult because it would require one to ask for help from Apple or get a new logic board for the device.
The only positive thing that the teardown found is the trackpad. Despite being twice as large as the trackpad of the previous iteration, it is easy to replace since the mechanism to remove it only involves sliding it out from the body of the laptop after removing accessible screws surrounding it.
As per 9To5Mac, though the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar got a measly 1/10 rating, this isn’t actually surprising because Apple products, especially the new ones, are not at all user-serviceable and would require professional help from the Cupertino giant when certain parts are broken.