OffBook Pro: Apple Confirms MacBook Pro Bug Turning off Laptops Involuntarily

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People have to deal with all kinds of nasty bugs around the holidays. Some get sick the moment they set eyes on their extended family; others have to figure out why their ornaments are covered in mothballs. MacBook Pro owners have a different bug to worry about, though, and it's said to make their laptops randomly turn off.

HotHardware today discovered a new Apple support article published Tuesday that acknowledges the bug. It's descriptively titled "If your MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2019, Two Thunderbolt 3 ports) keeps shutting down," which sounds a heck of a lot like If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, but with a lot more qualifiers (and, you know, consumer electronics).

The support article itself was far less descriptive. Apple merely said that some MacBook Pro units randomly turn off; there's no explanation for why. 

How to Fix It

The company did share a multi-step process affected device owners can follow if they want to fix the problem--or at least attempt to fix it--instead of contacting Apple:

  • If your MacBook Pro's battery is less than 90% charged, continue to step 2. If your battery is more than 90% charged, use your computer until the percentage drops below 90%, then continue to step 2.
  • Connect your Mac to its power adapter.
  • Quit all open applications.
  • Close your computer's lid, which puts your Mac into sleep mode.
  • Let your Mac charge for at least 8 hours.
  • After 8 hours, update to the latest version of macOS.

We don't have a MacBook Pro affected by this issue, so we can't test that process ourselves. But it seems that even Apple isn't totally confident that's going to work for everyone; it said that anyone who continues to experience this problem after following those steps should contact it directly via its customer support portal.

Nathaniel Mott
Freelance News & Features Writer

Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.