When Did The Mac Butterfly Keyboard Come Out?

when did the mac butterfly keyboard come out

If you are in the market for a new laptop you may be considering buying a new Macbook or Macbook Pro.

But in your research you may have come across one of the many articles describing the annoying reliability problems with the notorious “butterfly keyboard”.

The butterfly type keyboard was introduced by Apple to replace the “scissor switch” type keyboard. It was done, in theory, to improve reliability.1

As such, you may be wondering when the butterfly keyboard came out, which Macbooks have a butterfly keyboard and, perhaps most importantly… can you get a Macbook or Macbook Pro without a butterfly keyboard?

The short, good(ish) answer is PROBABLY!

Which Macbooks Use The Butterfly Keyboard?

The butterfly keyboard was originally introduced by Apple in 2015 on the entry level Macbook… The butterfly keyboard was subsequently incorporated into the super premium Macbook Pro line in 2016.

According to this article on Macworld, the butterfly keyboard is incorporated in the following Macbooks and Macbook Pros:

Macbook with Butterfly Keyboard

  • MacBook (Retina, 12-­inch, Early 2015)
  • MacBook (Retina, 12­-inch, Early 2016)
  • MacBook (Retina, 12-­inch, 2017)

Macbook Pro with Butterfly Keyboard

  • MacBook Pro (13­-inch, 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-­inch, 2017, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-­inch, 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-­inch, 2017, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (15-­inch, 2016)
  • MacBook Pro (15-­inch, 2017)

Where Can I Buy A Mid-2015 15″ Macbook Pro?

I am a happy Macbook Pro user… But perhaps that is because my Macbook Pro is the last version that was built with the more reliable “scissor switch keyboard”.

This is the last Macbook Pro without the butterfly keyboard.

Since I use a Macbook Pro, this article is focused on the Macbook Pro. The model I use is known as the “mid 2015 15″ Macbook Pro with Retina Display“.

Unfortunately, Apple discontinued this Macbook Pro in 2016.

I can attest that it is/was a fantastic laptop… Indeed, Mashable eulogized it shortly after Apple stopped making it, calling it the “best laptop ever made“.

But all is not lost…

You can probably still find used and/or refurbished mid-2015 15″ Macbook Pros online… The following is a list of places where can you get a used or refurbished mid 2015 15” Macbook Pro:

I can say from first hand experience the mid 2015 model is a great laptop.

If you have questions about it, let me know in the Disqus comments. I always try to respond within 24 hours or less.


  1. Considering the controversy surrounding the butterfly design, I’m very surprised this thread on MacRumours hasn’t been updated since 2015.