Apple: A Corporation Discovers The Device That Needs To Be Repaired Cheaply

In the future, customers will have access to the original components from Apple in order to be able to repair devices such as iPhones themselves more easily. The change of heart did not come by chance.

The production of electronic devices costs a lot of energy and requires a lot of problematic raw materials. That is why the best cell phones or the best laptops for the environment are those that last as long as possible.

If the electronics do not work or if the screen is defective, the good piece should be easy and inexpensive to repair. Replace defective parts - done. This is exactly what Apple promised last week for the two current mobile phones iPhone 12 and 13 and the new M1 Mac computers: " Access to original parts and tools from Apple".

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The products of the technology group are considered "locked" and maintenance-resistant. Anyone who needs repairs must go to an Apple store or certified workshop for original spare parts. 

There, replacing jammed keyboards or cracked displays can cost hundreds of euros, because the technicians do not change defective elements, they replace entire assemblies. It's easy for Apple, but expensive for customers.

There have long been independent service providers who leave no stone unturned in repairing iPhones and laptops at low cost. They search the Internet for spare parts, butcher old computers for components and solder daring power diversions to the faulty circuit boards. One of the most famous repairers is the New Yorker Louis Rossmann.

He regularly publishes his rescue operations on YouTube. But Rossmann is concerned with more than just rescuing individual devices. For years he has been fighting for the right to self-repair, for example for access to spare parts directly from the manufacturer.

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In July, American President Joe Biden signed a decree aimed at promoting competition among American companies. Among other things, the US government wants to break the repair monopoly of tech companies and strengthen the rights of customers and independent workshops. Apple's latest announcement not only follows a suddenly awakened sympathy for frustrated customers, the company is responding to growing government pressure.

Louis Rossmann should triumph. The repair guru, however, leans back in his extra-wide armchair on YouTube and reports that at the beginning of the year Apple promised easier repairs for laptops - and only kept the promise to a limited extent. 

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If you want to replace a stuck keyboard, you still have to replace the entire, expensive user interface of the laptop. It remains to be seen, says Rossmann, how user-friendly Apple's new spare parts service will be.

It is doubtful how many customers will even use the new openness. So how many would actually like to have their defective cell phone repaired when a new, better one is already tempting.

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