France doesn't understand why different iPhone models have varying parts

Posted:
in iPhone edited May 2023
France is investigating Apple over allegations that it deliberately limits the repair options for its smartphones, potentially rendering them obsolete.

France investigates Apple
France investigates Apple


When using Apple's self-service repair program, customers are required to provide the serial number of their device when ordering parts for products such as iPhones and Macs. Moreover, any parts obtained through this program must be matched with the specific intended device, ensuring proper installation and compatibility.

However, France's Halte l'Obsolescence Programme (HOP) association complains that Apple's policy of using serialized parts lets it restrict repairs to authorized repair providers and limits devices that don't use certified parts. HOP calls on Apple to "to guarantee the right to repair devices under the logic of real circular economy."

As a result, France has opened an investigation into Apple over "planned obsolescence" to determine if it intentionally plans for iPhones to become out of date due to these repair restrictions, according to AFP.

HOP lodged a complaint against Apple in 2017 for intentionally reducing the maximum performance of certain older iPhone models with deteriorating batteries, a measure aimed at preventing unexpected shutdowns.

After Apple acknowledged that it deliberately slowed down older iPhones, the company faced numerous legal challenges. However, Apple said it was crucial for preventing sudden shutdowns that may harm the iPhone's electronics.

Critics and plaintiffs argued that Apple's policy, whether intentional or not, pushes users toward purchasing new iPhones. Older models often encounter difficulties with the latest applications and iOS updates.

In 2020, Apple reached a settlement to pay $27.4 million for not informing iPhone users that software updates could potentially decrease the performance of older devices.

Read on AppleInsider
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 21
    Maybe Apple just decides to stop having stores in France. Seriously. France really seems to just want to shake the company down. 
    edited May 2023 baconstanglolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 21
    rotateleftbyterotateleftbyte Posts: 1,630member
    If they have an issue with Apple then they have a bigger one with Tesla. Tesla is continually changing the parts that go into its cars. While they won't sell you spares, they can hide it.

    As far as phones go, making sure that the part is correct is to my mind more important than anything else. There is nothing worse than ordering a part for you to find out that it is wrong when you get it. 
    While not so prevalent in the phone world (AFAIK), in the automotive world, tracking which cars are affected by the change from one model year to another is important. Getting the wrong part could result in deaths.


    aaplfanboybaconstangtmaylolliverwatto_cobralordjohnwhorfindanoxFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 3 of 21
    zompzomp Posts: 63member
     Curious to know the percentage of people who own and use any branded phone over 5 years old. The only reason why I'm so negative to this story is that I feel Europe would love to bring down success. I'm sorry, but if you don't like a brand, then buy the other brand. It's a simple as that - I haven't purchased a ford car since 2002 because they didn't last long, so I moved to Hyundai. Why doesn't France just say "don't like apple, buy Samsung" or visa versa. Back before apple, all phones were junk and didn't make it past a couple of years.
    rob53aaplfanboymacxpresslollivergenovelle
  • Reply 4 of 21
    mac_dogmac_dog Posts: 1,071member
    I wonder if they’re this strict with android phones. Probably not. 
    aaplfanboyapplebynaturelolliverwatto_cobragenovelleFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 5 of 21
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,799member
    zomp said:
     Curious to know the percentage of people who own and use any branded phone over 5 years old. The only reason why I'm so negative to this story is that I feel Europe would love to bring down success. I'm sorry, but if you don't like a brand, then buy the other brand. It's a simple as that - I haven't purchased a ford car since 2002 because they didn't last long, so I moved to Hyundai. Why doesn't France just say "don't like apple, buy Samsung" or visa versa. Back before apple, all phones were junk and didn't make it past a couple of years.
    It can't work like that as there is a temptation for competitors to follow suit. 

    Legislation is an absolute must and then cases can be put forward for investigation. 

    There are revisions to various EU directives coming down the pipe that may end up with far longer hardware/software support policies being implemented.

    They also include the option for users to downgrade new functionality added via software post purchase.

    Before that though, the textile industry will probably be first to come under new requirements for 'forced obsolescence' accusations. 
    FileMakerFeller
  • Reply 6 of 21
    baconstangbaconstang Posts: 1,118member
    I still have (as backup) my original SE.  Works great, but I didn't push it past iOS 10.  Later iOS releases aren't really designed for phones more than 3 years old.
    If you need newer iOS features, buy a new phone.  Simple.

    BTW...I'm still driving and enjoying my 2002 Focus ZX3...
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 21
    chasmchasm Posts: 3,371member
    I drive a 2001 Ford Windstar. It has needed some minor repairs over the years, but the only major repair was a new transmission in 2021. I don’t have a particular bias in favour of Ford, but this van has been all over North America a few times and it’s holding up pretty well.

    Moving on to phones, I have an iPhone XR still in service (not my everyday phone, that’s an iPhone 12) and my wife has an iPhone 8. Both do everything we want them to do, though of course she (in particular) lusts for the later cameras in the new iPhones.

    Apple continually improving and redesigning the parts inside an iPhone is not intended as “forced obsolescence,” it’s intended as “reasons to buy a new iPhone” — i.e., the camera is better, the phone is more efficient, runs the software better, et al.

    The fact that my XR and her iPhone 8 can still run the latest OS versions are more than enough proof that Apple is not forcing people to buy new iPhones every couple of years.

    I’m getting pretty tired of various boards making accusations that aren’t founded in anything, but requiring that the companies disprove their unproven negative theory. Apple should sue this group for libel and make THEM show the evidence they have that Apple is sabotaging old products in court. That would shut them up pretty quick …
    baconstangwatto_cobraFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 8 of 21
    hmlongcohmlongco Posts: 550member
    iPhones are made in multiple plants across the world. Not only do different models use different parts, but I wouldn't be surprised if different plants might even source different parts for the same model. Or if a part changes during the "lifetime" of a certain phone due to supplier or manufacturing issues.

    You simply can't expect absolutely identical devices when billions of a thing are made in multiple plants over many years...
    lolliverwatto_cobragenovelleFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 9 of 21
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 2,780member
    I have no idea where Andrew got the idea that this case is about Apple varying parts in iPhones. It's nothing to do with that at all. It's to do with them serializing identical parts. This is literally fake news. 
  • Reply 10 of 21
    Is France stupid or something? 
    watto_cobrabaconstang
  • Reply 11 of 21
    mfrydmfryd Posts: 216member
    If the concern is planned obsolescence, a real concern is that Apple prohibits the loading of third party operating systems, and at some point, Apple stops releasing security updates for old models.

    An iPhone with a known security flaw, that you can't patch, is essentially unusable on the public Internet.

    If you really want iPhones/iPads to have long life spans, you should require Apple to unlock a device to allow third party operating systems when Apple stops releasing security updates for that device.   At the very least, that would allow a motivated group to port a modern Android release to that device.  Alternatively, an enterprising individual you could port Linux to the device.

    I do understand that there are some good arguments for Apple to maintain complete control over the underlying OS.  However, great authority brings along great responsibility.   If Apple is going to maintain control over the OS, then they have a responsibility to patch security issues.   Otherwise, Apple is effectively obsoleting a device the moment it stops patching security flaws.


    williamlondon
  • Reply 12 of 21
    mfryd said:
    If the concern is planned obsolescence, a real concern is that Apple prohibits the loading of third party operating systems, and at some point, Apple stops releasing security updates for old models.

    An iPhone with a known security flaw, that you can't patch, is essentially unusable on the public Internet.

    If you really want iPhones/iPads to have long life spans, you should require Apple to unlock a device to allow third party operating systems when Apple stops releasing security updates for that device.   At the very least, that would allow a motivated group to port a modern Android release to that device.  Alternatively, an enterprising individual you could port Linux to the device.

    I do understand that there are some good arguments for Apple to maintain complete control over the underlying OS.  However, great authority brings along great responsibility.   If Apple is going to maintain control over the OS, then they have a responsibility to patch security issues.   Otherwise, Apple is effectively obsoleting a device the moment it stops patching security flaws.


    Nope. Doesn't take much to conceive of how your idea is not better for anyone. And it makes no sense in manufacturing and economics. When I can buy a Ford with a Chevy built engine and a VOLVO dashboard I'll but into this. My 1998 VCR doesn't record either. Things do become obsolete. Where we should fight this is with things like badly made HVAC systems, tires, large household appliances. Not on technology driven devices that can literally be recycled down to almost nothing. And don't end up in a dump. I hate to tell you but MS DOS isn't very secure on my 30 year old PC either these days.

    watto_cobratmaywilliamlondon
  • Reply 13 of 21
    genovellegenovelle Posts: 1,481member
    elijahg said:
    I have no idea where Andrew got the idea that this case is about Apple varying parts in iPhones. It's nothing to do with that at all. It's to do with them serializing identical parts. This is literally fake news. 
    They are serialized because this is how Apple knows what parts are in what device. If you purchase an iPhone with a defective screen part. It becomes much easier to track and replace them. It also keeps Apple from paying to replace a bootleg part under warranty. 
    baconstangwilliamlondon
  • Reply 14 of 21
    tundraboytundraboy Posts: 1,889member
    There is no such thing as "Planned Obsolescence"in the smartphone industry.  What there is is breakneck technological progress and murderously intense competition that guarantees bankruptcy if a company fails to keep up with the pace of technological change.   Anybody remember Blackberry, Nokia, Palm?

    Any effort to stop this imaginary "planned obsolescence" in smart phones is really an effort to stop technological advancement in that industry. --Which would be an unbelievably stupid thing to do.
    edited May 2023 baconstangwilliamlondonFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 15 of 21
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 7,799member
    genovelle said:
    elijahg said:
    I have no idea where Andrew got the idea that this case is about Apple varying parts in iPhones. It's nothing to do with that at all. It's to do with them serializing identical parts. This is literally fake news. 
    They are serialized because this is how Apple knows what parts are in what device. If you purchase an iPhone with a defective screen part. It becomes much easier to track and replace them. It also keeps Apple from paying to replace a bootleg part under warranty. 
    Serialization is questionable for certain parts and definitely impedes straightforward, non-security related repairs. 

    The practice effectively gives Apple a kill switch on repair. 

    I suppose this is another area where legislation will have to level the field 
    Mystakill
  • Reply 16 of 21
    chutzpahchutzpah Posts: 392member
    zomp said:
     Curious to know the percentage of people who own and use any branded phone over 5 years old. The only reason why I'm so negative to this story is that I feel Europe would love to bring down success. I'm sorry, but if you don't like a brand, then buy the other brand. It's a simple as that - I haven't purchased a ford car since 2002 because they didn't last long, so I moved to Hyundai. Why doesn't France just say "don't like apple, buy Samsung" or visa versa. Back before apple, all phones were junk and didn't make it past a couple of years.
    You're joking right?

    Feature phones lasted ages.  Nokia phones in particular were famous for being basically unbreakable unless you went massively out of your way and threw them under an actual bus.  The software was simple and solid, so didn't stretch the hardware, battery life was measured in weeks rather than days, they just went on and on.

    They were junk in terms of what they could do in comparison to a modern smartphone, but lots of them were built to last.
    muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondonFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 17 of 21
    sirdirsirdir Posts: 189member
    The author is either clueless or misleading. The problem is not ‘using different parts’, the issue is crippling the device when using non original parts or even original parts without ‘Apple’s blessing’. 
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 18 of 21
    tundraboytundraboy Posts: 1,889member
    chutzpah said:
    zomp said:
     Curious to know the percentage of people who own and use any branded phone over 5 years old. The only reason why I'm so negative to this story is that I feel Europe would love to bring down success. I'm sorry, but if you don't like a brand, then buy the other brand. It's a simple as that - I haven't purchased a ford car since 2002 because they didn't last long, so I moved to Hyundai. Why doesn't France just say "don't like apple, buy Samsung" or visa versa. Back before apple, all phones were junk and didn't make it past a couple of years.
    You're joking right?

    Feature phones lasted ages.  Nokia phones in particular were famous for being basically unbreakable unless you went massively out of your way and threw them under an actual bus.  The software was simple and solid, so didn't stretch the hardware, battery life was measured in weeks rather than days, they just went on and on.

    They were junk in terms of what they could do in comparison to a modern smartphone, but lots of them were built to last.
    Seriously?  You're putting up Nokia and feature phones as an argument to prove that Apple is intentionally designing iPhones to be obsolete in 5 years?  Where is Nokia's phone business now?  Nonexistent.  Why? Because they were stuck on feature phone tech and couldn't innovate fast enough, well enough to the next level i.e. smartphones.

    Smartphone innovation goes at breakneck speed.  There is no reason to build hardware that lasts well more than 5 years if it it won't be able to run the software and handle the data bandwidth that will come out in 5 years.

    edited May 2023 baconstangwilliamlondonFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 19 of 21
    chutzpahchutzpah Posts: 392member
    tundraboy said:
    chutzpah said:
    zomp said:
     Curious to know the percentage of people who own and use any branded phone over 5 years old. The only reason why I'm so negative to this story is that I feel Europe would love to bring down success. I'm sorry, but if you don't like a brand, then buy the other brand. It's a simple as that - I haven't purchased a ford car since 2002 because they didn't last long, so I moved to Hyundai. Why doesn't France just say "don't like apple, buy Samsung" or visa versa. Back before apple, all phones were junk and didn't make it past a couple of years.
    You're joking right?

    Feature phones lasted ages.  Nokia phones in particular were famous for being basically unbreakable unless you went massively out of your way and threw them under an actual bus.  The software was simple and solid, so didn't stretch the hardware, battery life was measured in weeks rather than days, they just went on and on.

    They were junk in terms of what they could do in comparison to a modern smartphone, but lots of them were built to last.
    Seriously?  You're putting up Nokia and feature phones as an argument to prove that Apple is intentionally designing iPhones to be obsolete in 5 years?
    No?  I was quite clearly responding to the post saying "Back before apple, all phones were junk and didn't make it past a couple of years."
    Where is Nokia's phone business now?  Nonexistent.  Why? Because they were stuck on feature phone tech and couldn't innovate fast enough, well enough to the next level i.e. smartphones.
    So?  Whether the business still exists 16 years later is no reflection on whether the phones were built to last.
    Smartphone innovation goes at breakneck speed.  There is no reason to build hardware that lasts well more than 5 years if it it won't be able to run the software and handle the data bandwidth that will come out in 5 years.
    There are people who are quite happy running phones without the latest software, or the fastest data bandwidth, or the breakneck latest release.  And it appears that their phones might be suffering from artificial restrictions on repairability, which sucks.  If you enjoy being on the bleeding edge, that's fine, but it doesn't benefit you for Apple enforcing this.
    williamlondonFileMakerFellermuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 20 of 21
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 2,780member
    genovelle said:
    elijahg said:
    I have no idea where Andrew got the idea that this case is about Apple varying parts in iPhones. It's nothing to do with that at all. It's to do with them serializing identical parts. This is literally fake news. 
    They are serialized because this is how Apple knows what parts are in what device. If you purchase an iPhone with a defective screen part. It becomes much easier to track and replace them. It also keeps Apple from paying to replace a bootleg part under warranty. 
    I wasn’t contesting that. I was pointing out that AI has yet again got the story completely wrong. 
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