Top M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Issues & How to Fix Them

There are some major M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro issues, including connectivity problems, low battery, crash, black screen, and no restore capability. Some have easy fixes like reset, others are a bit trickier.

M1 Chip Issues

Apple made some bold statements when describing their new M1 chipset as the most powerful chip it has ever created. Some tests have yielded outstanding benchmarks scores is the reason why the reviews speak wonders of these new machines. This great performance shown by the M1 chip is exactly what was advertised by Apple regarding their new technology. However, people are experiencing crashes and major problems.

M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Issues

Connectivity Issues

The current computers with the M1 chip, MacBook Mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro have been presenting connectivity issues.

When using third-party Bluetooth devices, they either disconnect randomly and inexplicably or don’t connect at all. Some Apple original devices are presenting this problem as well. For example, the Apple mouse and even the AirPods have a problem to stay connected.

Apple has yet to acknowledge this situation. But, all across the board about 40% have presented these problems consistently.

M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Issues

Fix:

There are some troubleshooting tips and workarounds that can be done to improve the situation of connectivity.

The first fix is to use a wired keyboard and mouse to boot the device. Some users have said to have the Bluetooth connectivity issue from the get-go. If this happened to you, then you will need a wired keyboard and mouse to complete the setup.

After the initial boot, you can try to pair the keyboard and mouse again. While they should work, it is expected some overall connectivity issues. The Bluetooth connection could fail again altogether if you reboot your Mac as well.

Secondly, you might need to use a Unifying receiver. Logitech’s dongle is a good workaround. This device uses a similar pairing technology to the Bluetooth system. It should help you to connect your third-party devices to the M1 Mac.

The unifying receiver has also been great when stopping the lagging issues. Users speak of zero connectivity or glitchiness in their devices when using the receiver.

Thirdly, if you own an Apple Watch then you’re in luck. You can use this smartwatch to unlock your Mac. Using it will spare you connectivity issues when booting completely.

Lastly, the M1 Mac Bluetooth issue arises most often when using multiple wireless connections. Until this problem gets fixed by Apple. The only workaround is to avoid having many wireless devices connected at once.

Battery life Issues

The second problem relates to the battery life of the MacBook Mini, Air, and Pro. At the event where the M1 was first introduced, the Mac team was very proud to announce the devices would last up to 11 hours of playback and web browsing.

M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Issues

Reality says otherwise both experts and users speak of an average of 5 hours rendering the computer at a low battery of 10%.

Fix:

First, you need to confirm that there is an issue. To check if the battery is lasting less than expected, or the usage is just more than you think, follow this trick:

  • Note down the battery percentage number, then walk away for 20 to 40 minutes and check the number displayed. If the difference is barely noticeable, then it is likely your battery has no problem at all.

Sometimes, just rebooting the computer might be what it needs to get back on track. After you restart your device, check if the battery problem persists or it has been fixed.

Another potential solution is to update everything. The newest apps are better optimized to spare battery life. Also, check app usage often and kill high-performing software if there is no valid reason for it to be working so hard.

Try to run native apps as much as you can. Apps designed by and for Apple are most likely to spare your device’s battery life.

Finally, extend your battery life by turning down the screen brightness and turning off the Wi-Fi when not online. Try to use headphones instead of the speakers. Lastly, modify your “Energy Saver” settings in “System Preferences” to optimize the battery usage.

Crash/Black screen.

Many users have reported a worrisome issue with the M1 chip devices. The computers crash suddenly and restart randomly. Some MacBook models also get their screen, inexplicably turned black.

The issue arose following the previous upgrade of Big Sur’s new version. Many recommend not to update your computer in order to avoid this glitch. However, it may be unavoidable to do. Apple is aware of the problem, but they haven’t given any statement of whether the problem comes from; the Big Sur system or the M1 chip.

The solution to this issue is not an easy one. The users stuck with black displays must take their computers to the Apple store for service.

No restore capability

The last problem makes users unable to restore the M1 Macs after the SSD has been reset. Those who want to restore their computers in hopes of removing unwanted software, to later install macOS 11.0.1 must notice that you may not be able to reinstall macOS.

Fix:

According to Apple, a system restore should work normally without a hitch after the last Big Sur Update Patch.

However, if you’re in the percentage still affected, there is only one other known way of fixing this issue.

You must connect your Mac to another Mac and use the Configurator 2 Software to reinstall the macOS in order to make your laptop once again operational.

M1 Mac SSD Wear Reporting Issue Due to Memory Swapping

Fix:

Upgrade to the latest version of macOS to get around this false SMART data reporting issue on your Mac. Since the update of Big Sur 11.4, Apple has fixed the SMART data reporting inaccuracy which is the main reason why the third-party reporting tool keeps fetching SSD thrashing. So, this means no faster aging of SSD occurs due to RAM swap or SSD hardware issues anymore.

Incompatible with Intel-based x86 Apps

Fix:

With Rosetta 2, you can run apps that are designed only for Intel processors on your M1 Mac easily. So, until software developers release an Apple Silicon compatible version of their apps, emulation like Rosetta is the only workaround for any Intel-based x86 apps that won’t run directly on M1 Mac due to differences in architecture.

Limited External Display Support

Now, we know that M1 Macs only support one external display with up to 6K resolution at 60Hz.

Fix:

If you have already had a docking station, then downloading the latest DisplayLink driver for macOS is one of the easiest ways to extend your display capabilities. Once you’ve installed it, you can connect up to 5 external displays to your M1 Mac with your docking station. Also, if you encounter any issues, just make sure to update the DisplayLink latest version to fix the problems.

M1 Mac is Bricked Due to Factory Reset

Fix:

For this problem, you can always use Recovery Assistant to erase your M1 Mac, then reinstall macOS. That is why you should always back up your M1 Mac to an external storage drive with Time Machine or manually before factory resetting it to avoid any permanent data loss. However, if that’s not the case, then the only solution to recover your lost data is to use data recovery software that supports recovery on M1 Mac.

These are the top M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro issues. If you are one of those users who have been affected by the above issues, hopefully, our guide will get them fixed.

Let us know if you have any questions in the comments section!

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