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White MacBooks Turning Yellow

Damien Barrett
Damien Barrett|June 13, 2006 10:30 AM
When TUAW reader Rich sent us this link pointing to an Apple Discussions page discussing the tendency for some of the plastics on the new white MacBooks to turn yellowish after just a few weeks, I initially dismissed it as one or two overly-sensitive Mac users complaining about the inevitable hand grease, dirt, and muck that all of our laptops experience during their average use. At least that's what I thought until I saw the pictures [2] [3] [4] [slideshow] and started reading the many posts from many users experiencing the same problem.

This discoloration is not dirt and cannot be cleaned by anything that people have tried, and the list is extensive: iKlear and similar cleaners, hot water, Windex, diluted bleach, a Magic Eraser...the list is long.

There definitely appears to be a problem here with the plastic that Apple has used for the palm rests on the first-generation white MacBooks. I have not seen this yet personally (I've yet to even see a MacBook in person), but the numbers and anecdotal evidence is looking pretty convincing. Now, I wonder if Apple will acknowledge the problem and replace the plastics, or whether they'll pass this off as "cosmetic damage" as they've done in the past (cracking lines on the G4 Cube, anyone?).