'Right to Repair' bills in five states could force Apple to provide iPhone parts, support ...

Posted:
in iPhone
Five states have introduced bills that would give citizens the "Right to Repair" electronics, compelling Apple and other manufacturers to provide service manuals and easier access to spare parts to consumers and third-party repair shops.




The proposed new legislation aims to take on the "authorized repair" model employed by many companies, reports Motherboard, where only technicians and repair shops certified by the manufacturer are permitted to work on the broken device if the customer wishes to retain a warranty. Typically, these repair services are provided training by the manufacturer, as well as access to service manuals that are not provided to the public, and the ability to order replacement components.

In the case of Apple, there are "Authorized Service Providers" that use Apple-certified technicians to make repairs to Mac systems. These authorized shops are able to order parts directly from Apple, have access to troubleshooting and repair manuals, are able to receive extra technical support, and can also be reimbursed for limited warranty or extended service agreement repairs.

Unlike the Mac, customers with iPhones cannot get their devices repaired via third-party services officially. While there are many repair shops that tout fixes for iOS devices, Apple does not offer an authorization program for iPhones and iPads, forcing the workshops to acquire parts through the grey market and potentially using recycled or counterfeit components.

The bills in Nebraska, Minnesota, New York, Massachusetts, and Kansas all aim to make it easier for consumers to fix the devices themselves, by publishing service manuals not typically viewable by the public, and making it easier to acquire spare parts. The change will also help the third-party repair market, as official instructions for repairs and genuine manufacturer-supplied components could lead to a lower repair failure rate, and higher customer satisfaction.

Enabling customers to make repairs will also have an environmental impact, suggest legislators, with fewer devices thrown away once broken.

"Limited authorized channels result in inflated, high repair prices and high overturn of electronic items," claim legislators behind the New York bill. "Another concern is the large amount of electronic waste created by the inability to affordably repair broken electronics."

The bills are modeled upon the Motor Vehicle Owners' Right to Repair Act, passed in Massachusetts in 2012, which provided car owners with similar manufacturer-supplied assistance for repairs. After passing, auto manufacturers treated it as if it was national legislation, due to the potential legal issues of managing 50 different versions of the bill varying by state.

It is thought that if at least one of the five bills pass into law, a similar effect could take place, opening up repairs for the rest of the country.
dysamoriamchan1
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 34
    This could be a big deal with some camera manufacturers such as Nikon who will not sell parts to anyone.
    dws-2jahblade
  • Reply 2 of 34
    It just doesn't stand up to logic. These restrictions are in place for a reason. And no, the modicum of repair revenue that Apple sees is not it. It's about quality control.

    I know of plenty of "repair shops" that I would never take an actual iOS device to. Regardless of whether they have access to OEM parts.
    edited January 2017 zroger73jfc1138mike1mkrewsonpscooter63command_fration al
  • Reply 3 of 34

    I know of plenty of "repair shops" that I would never take an actual iOS device to. Regardless of whether they have access to OEM parts.
    Me, too - Simply Mac being #1 on that list.
  • Reply 4 of 34
    If this topic interests you I'd recommend watching Louis Rossmann's videos on YouTube about it.
    dws-2dysamoria
  • Reply 5 of 34
    I think this would be great! I have over the years purchased ~$25k worth of Apple HW (PowerMacs, iMacs, iPods, iPhones, MacBooks... not to mention SW and media) and while very few have needed repairs inside or outside of warranties, I'm currently dealing with a MacBook Pro that my daughter spilled a orange soda into! Everything works (after cleaning the keys) except the battery will not charge so it has to be plugged in. I took it to Apple and they said $800 just to open it up and look! and most likely they would have to replace the entire inside so the cost would go up from there... I bought a MacBook Pro 15/i7/16GB/256GB refurbished from MicroCenter for $1500 instead! While that is a good deal on the 15", I would like to fix the old one. MacBooks are now considered disposable and not fixable for all but the most basic issues. If something like this goes through at least third party outfits would have a chance at fixing Apple products!
    elijahgjahbladeavon b7
  • Reply 6 of 34
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    krreagan2 said:
    I think this would be great! I have over the years purchased ~$25k worth of Apple HW (PowerMacs, iMacs, iPods, iPhones, MacBooks... not to mention SW and media) and while very few have needed repairs inside or outside of warranties, I'm currently dealing with a MacBook Pro that my daughter spilled a orange soda into! Everything works (after cleaning the keys) except the battery will not charge so it has to be plugged in. I took it to Apple and they said $800 just to open it up and look! and most likely they would have to replace the entire inside so the cost would go up from there... I bought a MacBook Pro 15/i7/16GB/256GB refurbished from MicroCenter for $1500 instead! While that is a good deal on the 15", I would like to fix the old one. MacBooks are now considered disposable and not fixable for all but the most basic issues. If something like this goes through at least third party outfits would have a chance at fixing Apple products!

    Doesnt household insurance cover this type of damage?
    edited January 2017 pscooter63
  • Reply 7 of 34
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    It just doesn't stand up to logic. These restrictions are in place for a reason. And no, the modicum of repair revenue that Apple sees is not it. It's about quality control.

    I know of plenty of "repair shops" that I would never take an actual iOS device to. Regardless of whether they have access to OEM parts.
    If this goes through then within six months, iPhones will be exploding left right and centre. 
    mike1ration al
  • Reply 8 of 34
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,286member
    This could be a big deal with some camera manufacturers such as Nikon who will not sell parts to anyone.
    Spot on. 
  • Reply 9 of 34
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    The security features and issues will be a challenge. 
  • Reply 10 of 34
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,301member
    Will do absolutely nothing to reduce costs. A tech will still require a minimum of one hour labor just to do a diagnostic and provide an estimate. Then add the cost of parts and additional labor to do the repair and you'll quickly find out why it is often uneconomical to repair the devices out of warranty. This is the way it's been for decades. I ran a consumer electronics store years ago and the question was why spend $300 to fix something that can replaced by something newer and better for the same price or only a few dollars more.
    randominternetpersonMnMarkpscooter63dementuschikanration aljbdragonjony0
  • Reply 11 of 34
    I'm a huge fan of federalism and giving states the ability to control their own laws, but this seems like a classic "interstate commerce" challenge.  The feds should step in and preempt these types of laws--either by creating a nation "right to repair" law or prohibiting such a thing.  I don't really care which, but forcing every company to deal with dozens of different state regime would be very burdensome.
    NemWanGeorgeBMacicoco3
  • Reply 12 of 34
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 2,045member
    The days of swapping out carburetors and vacuum tubes are over. If you want the sophistication, compactness, reliability and device security of current electronics (or even cars) you have to give up the notion that the end-user or neighborhood shade-tree mechanic is going to be able to make effective repairs in any way comparable to days gone by. 

    Deep inside the New York bill is this little gem: "ANY INDEPENDENT REPAIR PROVIDER THAT PURCHASES OR ACQUIRES EMBEDDED SOFTWARE  OR  SERVICE PARTS  SHALL, PRIOR TO PERFORMING ANY SERVICES ON DIGITAL ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT, NOTIFY THE  OWNER  OF  SUCH  EQUIPMENT  IN
    WRITING THAT: ... WARRANTORS CANNOT REQUIRE THAT ONLY BRANDED PARTS BE USED WITH THE PRODUCT IN ORDER TO RETAIN THE WARRANTY".

    Now consider Samsung's recent battery disaster. That happened with a component that they actually tested and had control over. The battery being one of the most likely components an independent shop would want to be able to replace, imagine the disastrous implications: Bubba's Discount Fix-It replaces the battery in a phone with some cheap, non-oem component. That battery then erupts and takes down an airbus on its way from New York to Los Angeles. Seems extreme, but that's actually the sort of thing that's at stake.

    Yes, those sorts of dubious repairs already happen (and you should be worried about that), but by giving the consumer the option to make that choice while explicitly being told they're not voiding their warranty, the probability goes up that such decisions will be made, and the probability that such choices will lead to extreme and tragic outcomes also goes up.
    dysamoriadementuschikanradarthekatration albadmonk
  • Reply 13 of 34
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,742member
    Rayz2016 said:
    Doesnt household insurance cover this type of damage?
    Did you really want jack up your homeowners insurance rates over a laptop battery?
  • Reply 14 of 34
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,956member
    I think the idea is good, but as always, the devilnis in the details. What's to keep Apple (or Samsung) from charging such exorbitant rates for training that it becomes unfeasible? Ditto with parts? I can easily see 'authorized' repair centers having to charge so much more for their repairs that they can't turn a profit against they guy that works out of Starbucks putting in parts from eBay. Still, having access to a legitimate repair manual and parts goes a long way. 

    Something else that would be nice is the 'right to repairability. I took an iPhone 4s apart a few years back.... it was insane how they managed to cram everything in there! I realize that consumer demands for size, features, style, etc often force the manufacturers to design products the way they do, but it sure would be nice if they were a bit easier to fix. 
    dysamoriaavon b7
  • Reply 15 of 34
    Of course Minnesota would be one of the states. We know all about stupid in this state.
    icoco3dasanman69
  • Reply 16 of 34
    darkvaderdarkvader Posts: 1,146member
    It just doesn't stand up to logic. These restrictions are in place for a reason. And no, the modicum of repair revenue that Apple sees is not it. It's about quality control.

    I know of plenty of "repair shops" that I would never take an actual iOS device to. Regardless of whether they have access to OEM parts.
    And if you believe Apple will do a better job, then you can take your devices to the Apple Store.

    Yes, those restrictions are in place for a reason:  To increase Apple's profits.  It's not about quality control, you can often get a better job done by the guy who doesn't have to follow Apple's corporate script.

    And sure, there are repair shops that are terrible.  There are Apple "Geniuses" who are terrible too.  The right to repair is about giving you a choice.

    And if you do know how to repair your own stuff, it gives you access to the Apple parts, not just what you find on eBay, and you don't have to pay someone to fix what you can fix yourself.
    dysamoriamchan1
  • Reply 17 of 34
    It's a very silly piece of legislation that will not reduce costs but will instead create a giant mess for consumers and companies. I wonder if these laws are put into motion just so legislators can collect some campaign donations to stop the stupid. This ISN'T fixing a fan. It's a highly sophisticated device and the people that REALLY want to work on them at home already can and do. Most of these states won't even pass healthy labeling laws on the crap food that gets sold. But now they will force this as if there's all kind of mom and pop stores ready to take apart and repair these devices for $10? Maybe the way around the law if to have different prices for certified dealers and non-certified dealers. This will also effect Furnace and homes systems BTW.
  • Reply 18 of 34
    pscooter63pscooter63 Posts: 1,080member
    john.b said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    Doesnt household insurance cover this type of damage?
    Did you really want jack up your homeowners insurance rates over a laptop battery?
    Do you really want to funnel premiums into something that isn't there to help you when you need it?
    dysamoria
  • Reply 19 of 34
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,557member
    This sounds like a cluster fuck waiting to happen.
    ration albadmonk
  • Reply 20 of 34
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    MplsP said:
    I think the idea is good, but as always, the devilnis in the details. What's to keep Apple (or Samsung) from charging such exorbitant rates for training that it becomes unfeasible? Ditto with parts? I can easily see 'authorized' repair centers having to charge so much more for their repairs that they can't turn a profit against they guy that works out of Starbucks putting in parts from eBay. Still, having access to a legitimate repair manual and parts goes a long way. 

    Something else that would be nice is the 'right to repairability. I took an iPhone 4s apart a few years back.... it was insane how they managed to cram everything in there! I realize that consumer demands for size, features, style, etc often force the manufacturers to design products the way they do, but it sure would be nice if they were a bit easier to fix. 
    I truly don't give a crap if I can't fix it. Soon these things will be 5mm sealed slabs of glass on one side screens and composites (or even glass) on other other adjusted to the micrometer, with no ports and 50 internal features with dozens of interconnections.
    You, and 99.999% of people (including including mom and pop shop electronic dabblers) will never be qualified to fix these things correctly.
    Once batteries become good enough to last 10 years under normal use (which will happen eventually), opening them EVER will be unthinkable unless they're abused.
    With good quality control, breakage and no buttons, these things could easily last a decade if they're not abused.
    edited January 2017 badmonk
Sign In or Register to comment.