There are few people in Hollywood more interesting and talented as Taika Waititi, who last night, won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for for Jojo Rabbit. So, when he has something to say, people tend to listen. And hopefully Apple heard him last night.
After winning his Oscar, Waititi was asked by reporters what he believes the Writers Guild of America should be talking about with producers in their upcoming talks. But rather than address the question directly, Waititi turned his attention to Apple and its horrible Butterfly keyboard design.
"Apple needs to fix those keyboards. They are impossible to write on," Waititi said. "They've gotten worse. It makes me want to go back to PCs."
His comment is one of a chorus of Apple users who for the last few years have criticized Apple and its butterfly keyboard design for failing to deliver the functionality people have wanted. In some cases, the keyboards have had stuck keys and in others, presses don't register. Some users have called them unusable.
Worst of all, Apple stubbornly stuck to the keyboard design and baked it into a variety of devices, including the MacBook Waititi said he uses.
Apple has somewhat acknowledged its keyboard problems and last year, released a 16-inch MacBook Pro that ditched the butterfly in favor of the traditional scissor keyboard style that's been used for years on PCs. Most users have said that keyboard works well.
But Waititi's complaints suggest Apple might not be out of the woods. And while the company solved the problem in one place, there are many more people who are still living in a world where Apple's keyboard is a real issue.
So, what can Apple do?
For one, the company's apologies and free keyboard replacements aren't enough. Apple needs to work quickly to deliver new Macs that offer the traditional scissor keyboard. Yes, I know Apple has its own release schedule, but the biggest mistake the company can make is offer new Macs this year that don't offer a scissor keyboard design.
Whether Apple likes it or not, the butterfly keyboard is dead and the company needs to acknowledge that. It also needs to not make the mistake of trying to come out with a new version and bundling it in this year's computers. Whether the company likes it or not, users prefer scissor keys.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Apple needs to evaluate what a big problem its handling of the butterfly keyboard has been. The company heard the complaints loud and clear from the beginning and did little to address them. It then tried again and again to push butterfly keyboards on users. Again and again, users complained.
I've been following Apple for a long time, and I know full well the company's desire to look good in every circumstance. But this keyboard kerfuffle made the company look bad. So bad, in fact, that an Oscar winner needed to say something.
So, if nothing else, let's hope Apple finally and completely understands the keyboard mistakes it has made and moves to correct them. And let's hope most of all that Apple doesn't commit the same mistakes when it messes up next time.
In most cases, Apple, it's best to address the mistake, fix it, and move on.