According to the hilarious story recounted by Benz on his website, it seems that he had experienced a string of “problems” with his MacBook Pro where the screen was pure black after turning it on. This forced him to take it back to the store to get Apple to fix it, in which based on his estimates, it could have cost the company about $10,000 in repairs.
This is because the repair process involved the replacement of two motherboards, new cables, and also a complete replacement of the laptop which was worth $7,000. However, it was only on the fourth “failure” of the laptop that the Genius at the shop decided to try something different. According to Benz, “He used the flashlight function on his phone to shine on the laptop screen and could see a little circle where your login avatar would show (and this was incredible difficult to see). It turns out that the screen pixels are updated even when the backlight is off (at least if the clamshell is open).”
This resulted in them realizing that Benz’s display brightness was turned completely down, which he does once in a while when it’s connected to an external monitor. While this is a hilarious story, Benz does highlight several problems related to the screen’s brightness and settings that could have allowed him and Apple to avoid this entire saga.
He has also since filed a bug report with Apple in hopes that all of this can be improved upon in the future.