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Don’t come unhinged. March 30, 2009

Posted by antimeme in Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

If you check the Apple discussion sites, you’ll see that Air owners are experiencing catastrophic failures of the hinge mechanisms. What’s worse is that Apple is balking at repairs, claiming it is human error rather than a design flaw. I’m sorry, Apple. You are wrong.

Apple calls its portable computers “notebooks”. Others call them laptops. The Macbook Air is among the very lightest around. It seems perfectly suited to sitting on your lap or resting on your knees when you are stretched out on the couch. That’s where the problem lies. If you have the Air positioned so you can use it, chances are that you will be placing a lot of the weight on the bottom rear of the computer with most of the weight being borne on the back end. If you look, you’ll see that the bottom edge of the top half (the half that holds the screen). Therefore, the two parts that are feeling the most pressure? The hinges.

In my mind, this falls under the category of “design” flaw. Yes, users should not rest the Air on its back lid edge. But that is the most likely resting place when you have it on your lap – especially if your knees are at all raised. Apple should acknowledge its error, and pay for the repairs when necessary.

Use your head – use a cooling pad

If you use a cooling pad, the laptop rests on its feet. This will avoid the problem. Also, never, ever carry the laptop with the lid open. Close it – it will be exactly as you left it when you get to the couch or the throne room or wherever you are carying the thing, and you’ll do it without stressing the hinges.

But if you do have a problem with the hinges, be persistent with the Apple support team. It seems that if you refuse to take no for an answer, Apple will eventually fix the problem for you.