Apple’s Dan Riccio says 2018 iPad Pro ‘meets or exceeds’ quality standards of design and precision

“Earlier this week, Apple told The Verge that some 2018 iPad Pro models are shipping with a slight bend in the aluminum chassis, which is a side effect of the manufacturing process that is not expected to worsen over time or negatively impact the iPad’s performance,” Juli Clover reports for MacRumors. “”

“Many MacRumors readers were concerned about Apple’s position that a noticeable bend is not a manufacturing issue, prompting MacRumors reader Craig to send an email to Apple CEO Tim Cook to express his concerns,” Clover reports. “While Cook didn’t respond, Craig did get a reply from Apple’s VP of hardware engineering, Dan Riccio…”

Relative to the issue you referenced regarding the new iPad Pro, its unibody design meets or exceeds all of Apple’s high quality standards of design and precision manufacturing. We’ve carefully engineered it and every part of the manufacturing process is precisely measured and controlled.

Our current specification for iPad Pro flatness is up to 400 microns which is even tighter than previous generations. This 400 micron variance is less than half a millimeter (or the width of fewer than four sheets of paper at most) and this level of flatness won’t change during normal use over the lifetime of the product. Note, these slight variations do not affect the function of the device in any way.

Again, thanks for reaching out and I hope the above explanation addresses your concerns. — Dan Riccio, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Hardware Engineering

Warped iPad Pro image via MacRumors with red lines overlay by MacDailyNews
Warped iPad Pro image via MacRumors with red lines overlay by MacDailyNews

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The photos we’ve seen are of units that are warped noticeably more than four sheets of paper. If your iPad Pro is warped over 400 microns in variance, take/send it back to Apple and ask for a replacement.

Apple says some 2018 iPad Pro units ship with bent chassis, but they don’t consider it a defect – December 20, 2018


    1. Too early to tell.

      First: Riccio can brag all he wants about drawing dimensions for the static parts, the fact is that iPads must be designed for some level of abuse including bending. With Jony constantly demanding thinner devices, the newest Apple products have definite structural compromises.

      Second, we have a glass screen with a metal bezel. A well designed multi-material assembly will at least attempt to ensure that the metal cannot plastically deform before the glass shatters. If you see broken glass, you will know an accident or abuse occurred. If you see bent metal and perfect glass, then we have a design and / or manufacturing problem. That problem doesn’t have to do with how flat Riccio’s minions can stamp the metal. It has to do with how much margin the metal has before it reaches its plastic limit.

      1. ‘Some level of abuse”. Of course!…but as a high end computing device.. not a snowboard or alike.

        ‘Some level of Abuse’ is a very vague and subjective statement.

        Mine is doing just fine.. 1.5 months.. used for 4-6 hours a day ..and im not an obsessive compulsive caretaker of things.

  1. ” We’ve carefully engineered it and every part of the manufacturing process is precisely measured and controlled.”

    Obviously not controlled very well.

    Apple, you’re not doing yourself any favors trying to justify that this is acceptable !

    1. What you claim is “obvious” is not backed by any data as far as I can tell. You have the word of Apple regarding their manufacturing tolerances with respect to chassis flatness. I trust that word. Then, you have pictures of bent iPads with no solid evidence of how they arrived in that state. I see claims that they came that way out of the box, but I have no reason to believe those claims. Furthermore, given my experience with fabrication of advanced techology products, I cannot conceive how such a device could successfully pass through quality control prior to packaging and shipping. I suppose that someone in the manufacturing facility could have intentionally sabotaged Apple. Another possibility is that people damaged the “affected” iPads, intentionally or unintentionally, very soon after they were purchased. In these situations, I always ask who has the most to gain and how is the information being used. It is very possible that this is a coordinated smear campaign against Apple calculated to amplify the current stock price retreat for the benefit of an individual or small group of investors.

      1. “What you claim is “obvious” is not backed by any data as far as I can tell.”

        You don’t have to be a chicken to know when an egg is rotten. It’s plain common sense, something that constantly eludes you.

        Bottom line: Totally unacceptable!

        I don’t care how many Apple Fanboy Apologists like you and Jimbo, etc. drill down in the weeds with semantics and creative excuses. Changes NOTHING.

        I repeat: Totally unacceptable!…

    2. Consider this…Apple has been manufacturing and shipping iOS products since the original iPhone in 2007. Apple has shipped hundreds of millions of devices over the years, and I have never heard of one that was warped out of the box until now.

      So, what is the most likely explanation? That Apple suddenly abandoned its legendary attention to quality and detail in its products? Or that someone is attempting to make Apple look bad for either personal gain or a personal vendetta? Until the evidence is collected and assessed, I will give the benefit of the doubt to Apple in this case. Logic guides me to that course of action.

      If it turns out that some defective iPads slipped by, then Apple will replace them and address the flaws in the manufacturing and inspection process. Time will tell. Emotional reactions will not change the outcome.

  2. You can’t tell the straightness of something when the photo is taken from a phone – There will always be lens distortion unless you are using a professional camera setup with a lens that makes it straight.. If they are warped beyond tolerance then I am sure Apple would replace.

    1. While I cannot claim that the curve is due entirely to lens distortion, you can clearly discern the effect of the wide angle lens in the corners of the box and the parallax of the lines. Furthermore, the far right corner of the box (same side as the apparent curvature of the iPad) is far more distorted than the left.

      The red lines added by MDN are worthless. Anyone with a bit of knowledge and intelligence would know better than to pull that kind of stunt. People are way too gullible these days.

      If someone were honestly trying to show the curvature of the iPad, then why choose such an odd perspective and set up? It doesn’t make sense to me.

      If Apple is shipping defective iPads, then I expect the company to replace the defective units and sort out its quality control issues in China. If this is just another hoax to disparage Apple, then I would appreciate some investigative reporting. I am extremely tired of the misinformation and fraud.

  3. If Apple claims that the bend in the ipad depicted in the pic is ok.. then they are full of Crap !

    But I dont believe Apples/Dans comments is refering to the bend in the Ipad depicted in the picture.
    That ipad has been carried around in a backpack for a week and and there is no saying if it was abused and mistreated. .
    I wouldnt just throw an 2k ipad computer in my backpack and run around.. that’s careless …. and any damage from that is owners responsibility.

    I believe Apple is addressing the issue Dan specifily and clearly pointed out: slight bend, thickness of few sheets of paper.
    That i can see as acceptable….
    Previouse ipads had curved edges.. so it would have been harder to detect minute, insignificant bends.
    But with the New squared off edges its easer to destect the slightest bend if layed on flat surface.

    So ya.. i think Apple may be correct .. but they are full of Bull-crap if they claim the above bend depicted in the picture is ok !.

    1. Ps..I have had my new 12.9 pro for about a month and half now.
      It spends most of its time on my uneven laps.. then tissed on the sofa cushions or placed on side tables.. etc……and it is not in a case.. just a protective film on the back.
      Never saw anything that grabbed my attention.
      Today i tested it on several flat surfaces and straightedge rullers
      Zero bend !

  4. The bend in that image looks a WHOLE LOT MORE THAN 4 SHEETS OF PAPER.
    Apple trying to justify a clear prxuct manufacturing complications/ problem/side effect/defect is just a joke!
    Sad that a company of the likes and finances, as Apple attempt to push a sub-par manufactured, expensive high end product on potential customers and tell them that such a slightly bent product is a perfectly fine and acceptable to purchase.
    I would never, EVER put up with a bend in a new Apple product as easily seen and as predominant as the one in the above image,
    No effin’ way!
    Especially at the high pricing Apple is charging for such a premium and seriously expensive electronic device.
    No one else will, either.
    What a cloisterfog!

    1. You are jumping to conclusions way too fast.
      There isnt enough data to draw conclusions from.
      The ipad depicted above was not straight out of the box.. it was tossed and carreid around in a backpack for a week..

      So lets wait for more data.. before we bash.

    2. MichelPM, your post exhibits a ridiculous and emotional knee jerk reaction based on no real evidence. The comment from Apple regarding iPad flatness tolerances was a generic statement. It was not made in reference to that suspiciously lousy photo. Furthermore, you have no way of knowing how that iPad became bent (assuming of course, that the bend is real and not exaggerated by the photographic technique).

      Chill out and let the story develop before you release your outrage. It may be completely unnecessary.

    3. All your points are valid and well said. NO EXCUSE FOR BENT PRODUCTS! I read the Number 1 and Number 2 Apple sycophant apologists are out in full force and double teaming you. They have nothing dealing with reality, only knee jerk excuses. Stick to your guns, MichelPM…

  5. If that’s what passes muster for exceeds manufacturing expectations at Apple then I don’t think I will be able to buy another product from them ever again.

    This is absolutely outrageous. Bent tech for over £1000 being considered acceptable. Outrageous.

    1. There is no reason to believe that. No reason at all. See above. Then calm your outrage and relax. You are too easy to spin up. That makes you a tool, Tim, for anyone who needs to generate emotional reactions for their own benefit.

      1. It’s an appropriately emotional response to the quote from Dan Riccio.

        I am angry about how Apple have chosen to respond to the criticism. The way a company should respond to criticism which says their new expensive toys are shipping bent is to reply that any bent iPads are a mistake and should be replaced. It is not to say that it is within normal limits.

        He has opened the gates to a series of articles which will carry that photo of a visibly bent iPad along with his quote saying that it’s ‘normal’ and ‘expected’. That makes Apple look ridiculous.

        If that viewpoint makes me a tool then so be it. I would counter anyone who thinks Apple has taken a good path to have dealt with this issue is a tool. Probably quite a large tool. Like a pneumatic drill, certainly bigger than say a screwdriver. 😃

        1. that the photo isn’t real? This is not a photo of a brand new iPad with a bend. It is a photo of an iPad somebody bent. It is a fake story designed to manipulate people. What would you like Apple to do? Lie about their manufacturing tolerances? 400 microns is acceptable and you would never notice it. Somebody took Apple’s honest response and paired it with this faked photo of a bent iPad. Faked meaning it’s not a brand new iPad off the manufacturing line but instead an iPad somebody bent. It’s an unfortunate situation but this is the world we live in where trolls take as many cheap shots at Apple as they can.

  6. And for those apologising. Apples only response to this should be: if you receive a bent iPad then this was a mistake and we will replace your product immediately.

    NOT this is within normal specifications BS.


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