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Traditional keyboards use a scissor mechanism, which tends to wobble around the edges. This creates a lack of precision when you strike anywhere except the center of the key. We needed to reduce key wobbling for a keyboard this thin; otherwise, striking a key off-center could result in the keycap hitting bottom before a keystroke registers. So we designed an entirely new butterfly mechanism, which is wider than the scissor mechanism and has a single assembly made from a stiffer material — allowing for a more stable, responsive key that takes up less vertical space. This innovative design improves stability, uniformity, and control — no matter where you press on the key.
TRADITIONAL SCISSOR MECHANISM
APPLE-DESIGNED BUTTERFLY MECHANISM
The redesigned keys on the new MacBook feature a larger surface area, a thinner construction, and a deeper curvature, creating a more defined space for your fingertip to naturally find and press the keys. These refinements may be subtle, but the feel is distinct and intuitive. Combined with the butterfly mechanism, this new design allows for much greater control when typing.
When we set out to design an incredibly thin keyboard, one of the first things we considered was how to backlight the keys in a way that took up less space while delivering an even cleaner and more refined look and feel. To do that, we removed the row of LEDs and the light guide panel that distributed light throughout the keyboard and instead placed an individual LED under each key. These LEDs are calibrated for uniform brightness, so every key and character looks clear and sharp with minimal light around the keycap. All while being engineered for as much energy efficiency as possible.
The 12-inch Retina display on the new MacBook isn’t just picture perfect — it’s also paper thin. In fact, at just 0.88 millimeter, it’s the thinnest Retina display ever on a Mac. A specially developed automated manufacturing process forms the impossibly thin edge-to-edge glass that’s only 0.5 millimeter thick. And we reduced the space between display components for a tighter, more integrated design.
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