There are two things that really define an iPad Pro: the Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard. Without these, they are basically just more powerful iPads. So when one of the two starts acting up for quite a number of users, you can bet there’s some trouble brewing. To prevent a potential backlash and PR nightmare, Apple has supposedly circulated an internal memo that instructs staff and service centers to allow for free repairs of the Smart Keyboards for up to three years from its purchase.
There are, of course, countless keyboard accessories available for the iPad Pro and iPads in general. The first-party Smart Keyboard, however, is quite special in the way it connects to the iPad Pro as well as its lightweight and slim design. However, it is already old by today’s standards, more than a year since it was first launched. Coincidentally, problems with the keyboard have started popping up.
Some users have reported sticking ore repeating keys while others have complained about connection problems, both with the magnetic connector as well as the data connection between keyboard and tablet itself. Considering how essential those functions are to the use of an iPad Pro as the “more than a PC” that Apple has been advertising heavily, Apple really has little choice but to do damage control.
The Smart Keyboard is already covered by Apple’s 12-month limited warranty, which is on par with accessories. So it’s both unusual but also generous that Apple has extended it with an additional 2 years. That’s a total of three years free repairs just for an accessory, but a crucial accessory at that.
The extended warranty covers both sizes of the Smart Keyboard, for the older 12.9-inch as well as the 9.7-inch iPad Pros. Those who have already paid for a replacement before this new policy was implemented will supposedly be refunded. The extended warranty has yet to be confirmed or made public.