Apple has launched a replacement program for the USB-C cable that came bundled with 2015 Retina MacBook units, finding that some cables were faulty. Bad cables would result in the MacBook not charging, or charging unreliably when connected to a power adapter.

From Apple’s help site, affected customers can order a free replacement USB-C cable. Retina MacBook owners who provided a mailing address at product registration will be shipped a new cable automatically by the end of February … If you did not provide this information when buying the MacBook, visit Apple’s site to order a replacement cable instead …

You can tell if you are affected by looking at the printing on the side of your Apple USB-C cable. If the cable lacks a serial number next to the ‘Designed by Apple in California Assembled in China’ text, you should be eligible for a replacement. See the image below for a comparison of the affected and redesigned cables. Please note that although these are the graphics Apple provides, they appear to have made a Photoshop mistake with the ends — the photos depict Lightning cables, not USB-C connectors.

The replacement process can be initiated at an Apple Store with a Genius Bar appointment, at an authorized reseller or online via Apple Support channels. The program runs through June 8, 2018 so you have a couple of years to get your cables swapped out. If you can’t reach an Apple Store, it may be simpler to just buy a USB-C cable from a third party; I recommend the Anker USB-C cables which include additional reinforcement to prevent fraying, and will likely last longer than Apple’s first-party offerings.

Affected cables: affected_cable_2x

Redesigned cables (identifiable by inclusion of serial number):




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About the Author

Benjamin Mayo

Benjamin develops iOS apps professionally and covers Apple news and rumors for 9to5Mac. Listen to Benjamin, every week, on the Happy Hour podcast. Check out his personal blog. Message Benjamin over email or Twitter.