New York passes functionally toothless Right to Repair bill

Posted:
in General Discussion edited December 2022
New York is the first US state to pass a Right to Repair bill, but it has been watered down to effectively make it worthless for consumers.

Apple Repair Program
Apple Repair Program


Following its passage through the New York State Senate in 2021, New York has now officially passed an electronics Right to Repair bill. It will concern electronic devices, with certain exceptions, that are sold for the first time in New York from July 2023.

"As technology and smart devices become increasingly essential to the lives of New Yorkers," writes New York governor Kathy Hochul in a public memo, "it is important for consumers to be able to fix the devices that they rely on in a timely fashion."

New: Gov. Hochul has signed the "right to repair" law -- with the Legislature agreeing to a number of changes, as outlined in her approval message. pic.twitter.com/GUBExlj5BD

-- Jon Campbell (@JonCampbellNY)


"This legislation would enhance consumer options in the repair markets by granting them greater access to the parts, tools and documents needed for repairs," she continues. "Encouraging consumers to maximize the lifespan of their devices through repairs is a laudable goal to save money and reduce electronic waste."

However, Right to Repair advocate Louis Rossmann has made a bitter YouTube video expressly saying that Governor Hochul's statement is "the exact opposite of what's going to happen with this bill because of how it was amended."






Central to Rossmann's argument is that the purpose of Right to Repair is to allow consumers to fix or replace individual components that have broken. As passed, he argues that the bill effectively allows companies free reign to declare a single component as unrepairable, and instead offer a costly assembly of several related parts.

"[The] manufacturer will tell you that when you have a bad $28 chip on your motherboard that what you need to do is replace the $745 Motherboard," he says.

This is how Apple's service at authorized centers, its own Apple Stores, and the self-repair system work. Apple has not offered individual motherboard components or other ICs to repair shops since the early '80s.

Governor Kathy Hochul's memo confirms that the bill "allows for original equipment manufacturers may provide assemblies of parts rather than individual components when the risk of improper installation heightens the risk of injury."

The revisions also prohibit working around device security, and remove the previous requirement that vendors provide necessary passwords for devices. This means that Apple will still be allowed to serialize components after a repair.

New York's passing of the bill comes as many states and countries -- including members of the European Union -- work to pass similar laws. In response to US and international pressure, Apple announced a Self Service Repair program in 2021, although Right to Repair campaigners don't agree it solves the issue.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 23
    y2any2an Posts: 185member
    … it has been watered down to effectively make it worthless for consumers.
    A wholly unjustified statement.
    radarthekatwatto_cobrajibstrongy
  • Reply 2 of 23
    KTRKTR Posts: 278member
    Dumb ass American law makers, soc WILL REPLACE THAT LAW.
    radarthekatwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 23
    @y2an Then justify the remaining worth of the bill. Rossmann explained how the bill was gutted to allow manufacturers to continue to practice the same anti-repair bullshit they've always done. Assuming you're not just a paid shill or bot, then make a compelling counterargument.
    watto_cobramuthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondondarkvaderstrongy
  • Reply 4 of 23
    > 10 paragraphs and a 12 minutes video explaining why it has been watered down to effectively make it worthless for consumers.
    A wholly unjustified statement
    watto_cobrajibstrongy
  • Reply 5 of 23
    "New York passes functionally toothless Right to Repair bill"

    The one minor problem with this headline is that the article which follows completely fails to make the case that the new law is "functionally toothless," and I read it quite closely to try and understand the rationale. The main (only?) complaint seems to be that the bill fails to force companies to sell individual components that may be part of a larger assembly, so a company like Apple could continue selling an entire motherboard "part," instead of selling individual chips on the board. For those keeping score, Apple hasn't sold individual chips since the '80s. But let's say Apple did sell individual chips: this would assume the capability to diagnose which particular chip "went bad" on a board, then further ascertain that the reason the chip went bad isn't related to another problem on the board, and then--assuming you could do that--would further require the skill to remove and then hand-solder a chip that was placed and soldered onto the board robotically. This is insanity. And what happens when I take my $2,000 Macbook into Joe's Repair Shop, and Joe "shaky hands" screws up the soldering job and fries my whole laptop while voiding my warranty? 

    I would love to see the stats on how many people are actually using Apple's Self Repair service as well as how many of them screwed up devices by tackling a repair for which they didn't have the skills to perform successfully. 
    edited December 2022 radarthekatskiwiwatto_cobraJaiOh81strongy
  • Reply 6 of 23
    When you took it to Joe instead of Apple while it was under warranty and Joe fries it? That’s on you. I’d support independent app stores with the same consequence: that sideloaded app that wasn’t security checked vacuums your identity? Oops. That’s now between you and that app store in Romania. 

    Maybe it IS past time Apple stopped completely trying to save some from them selves. 
    edited December 2022 watto_cobrabaconstangmuthuk_vanalingamJaiOh81williamlondonstrongy
  • Reply 7 of 23
    JFC_PA said:
    When you took it to Joe instead of Apple while it was under warranty and Joe fries it? That’s on you. I’d support independent app stores with the same consequence: that sideloaded app that wasn’t security checked vacuums your identity? Oops. That’s now between you and that app store in Romania. 

    Maybe it IS past time Apple stopped completely trying to save some from them selves. 
    Apple reminds me more and more of the Nanny state.
    muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondondarkvader
  • Reply 8 of 23
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 2,783member
    "[The] manufacturer will tell you that when you have a bad $28 chip on your motherboard that what you need to do is replace the $745 Motherboard," he says
    Have any of you TRIED to replace a chip on a board? Flush mounted components CAN be done by hand IF you have the right equipment and the skill. Where I used to work we sometimes had to up-rev our custom boards and we had a team that did that. Even then some of them only had 50-70% success rate. (Remember, these were known working boards. ). This was for changing surface mount diodes, resisters, and such. Also these boards were nowhere as densely packed as Apple’s boards. 

    If the upgrade required changing multi pin IC packages, 16 pin or more, we generally scrapped the board. The success rate was just too low to bother. 

    And in the case of a broken board, the person would have to be able to diagnose what was broken. Not bloody likely in the field. 

    That’s why Apple and every other electronics manufacturer replaces modules not components. 

    These Right to Repair laws are well meaning but written by people with no clue what’s involved. 
    radarthekatskiwiwatto_cobrabaconstangJaiOh81strongy
  • Reply 9 of 23
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,824moderator
    JFC_PA said:
    When you took it to Joe instead of Apple while it was under warranty and Joe fries it? That’s on you. I’d support independent app stores with the same consequence: that sideloaded app that wasn’t security checked vacuums your identity? Oops. That’s now between you and that app store in Romania. 

    Maybe it IS past time Apple stopped completely trying to save some from them selves.   
    The problem with this approach is that it's Apple that will take the hit to its reputation.  With a brand value in the hundreds of billions, it seems a bit heavy-handed to force Apple down that path.  It would allow relatively minor bad actors to do outsized damage to Apple's image in the eyes of all consumers.  With little recourse for Apple to recoup losses due to the reputational damage inflicted upon it. 
    edited December 2022 watto_cobrawilliamlondonstrongy
  • Reply 10 of 23
    y2an said:
    … it has been watered down to effectively make it worthless for consumers.
    A wholly unjustified statement.
    Louis Rossmann seems to be stuck in the 70’s. A quick look at the mobo of an iPhone, iPad or Mac will tell you that it is practically impossible to replace any individual component short of a highly specialized operation with a flow-soldering  machine. Which is also ignoring the elephant in the room - how do you diagnose authoritatively to the individual component level? I’d wager Apple can’t do that. 
    baconstangwilliamlondonstrongy
  • Reply 11 of 23
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 2,783member
    Right to Repair is fine for batteries, screens, camera modules, and such. Private owners, or even shops doing component level diagnostics and repairs is however  a fantasy. lets be honest, APPLE ITSELF doesn’t do that kind of repair. Neither does any other manufacturer. Not only because it isn’t cost effective, though it isn’t. They don’t because the modules aren’t reparable. Want them to be reparable? Hope you’re happy going back to brick sized phones, and ten pound laptops that are an inch thick. Even then some modules like screens, can never be reparable. 
    baconstangmuthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondonstrongy
  • Reply 12 of 23
    y2any2an Posts: 185member
    AnonJohn said:
    @y2an Then justify the remaining worth of the bill. Rossmann explained how the bill was gutted to allow manufacturers to continue to practice the same anti-repair bullshit they've always done. Assuming you're not just a paid shill or bot, then make a compelling counterargument.
    The other contributors here are providing pretty good explanations, no point in repeating them.
  • Reply 13 of 23
    My rights start where yours end. Full stop - you would think it simple enough a concept for those in the comments to understand… but no…

    Apple and all those companies trying to force on us their recurrent payment business model have the right to try to convince us to do so but NOT FORCE IT ON US.

    Rossmann is a modern day hero and his advocating will result in better quality of life for all. 

    My hat is off to the writer of the article and appleibsider for taking a stance.




    williamlondondarkvader
  • Reply 14 of 23
    Every time you add a replaceable component you introduce two more failure points.  I have been servicing computers for over 20 years and just off the top of the head two things come to mind, 

    The last MacBook to have replaceable RAM was the 2012 MacBook Pro (non retina) I say replaceable and not upgradeable because in the past 15 years or so i have seen very few units where the user has had the RAM upgraded. They still have the same base memory the unit shipped with. On the other side of that I have seen numerous models where the RAM after years of being bumped and jostled around came loose and damaged the SO-DIMM slot, because the SO-DIMM slot is a piece of shit. Additionally, the few mm of distance saved putting the RAM on package dramatically decreases latency and therefore improves performance. 

    As far a Rossman is concerned, I've worked at shops that do the kind of component level repairs that he does on his videos, and I can tell you even  first hand that even with the most skilled solderer the vast majority of those repairs fail after a few months for numerous reasons.

    To make an iPhone water resistant you have to eliminate ingress points, which means soldering components together, using gaskets, and adhesive, mess any of those things up and its no longer water resistant, all of which make repairs a lot more difficult.

    One thing that everyone here seems to have either forgotten, or don't realize... The VAST majority of consumers do not want to fix their own devices and vehicles, they have to much other shit to do in their lives than to devote the time to self repair.  All of us here are not the majority. "Independent" repair shops are shady as fuck, Again having worked for multiple 3rd party service providers, Its not that difficult to become a certified repair center, and the rules set forth by manufactures are to minimize shady practices like using bootleg parts that are inferior and poor service techniques.  Just because you shout about R2R really loudly, doesn't mean you are right or represent the majority. People like Rossman and iFixit aren't doing this for the people, they're doing it to support their business, they are no less self interested as the manufactures are. 
    DAalsethlongfangthtwilliamlondonbaconstangstrongy
  • Reply 15 of 23
    Macocalypse, 

    your answer is an affront to every thinking abled person. 
    A jumble of purposeful confusion.
    You care to disclose your financial ties to apple and the likes or perhaps to their lobbying representatives?
    williamlondon
  • Reply 16 of 23
    My rights start where yours end. Full stop
    Nope. Not even close.

    Please explain how component-level repair is supposed to work in a Mac, an iPhone, or an iPad? And how much would you expect to pay someone for this?

    I mean, your rights are all important, right?
    edited December 2022 williamlondonstrongy
  • Reply 17 of 23
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,703member
    Good there won’t be a black market created for stolen Apple device parts, which would happen if Rossmann got his way.
    strongy
  • Reply 18 of 23
    flydogflydog Posts: 1,121member
    Nothing but a clickbait headline that is not justified by any facts. The law seems like it strikes a sensible balance between consumers and manufacturers. The fact that some moron can't desolder any individual chip on his motherboard does not make it "toothless" or "watered down."  
    DAalsethwilliamlondonstrongy
  • Reply 19 of 23
    My rights start where yours end. Full stop - you would think it simple enough a concept for those in the comments to understand… but no…

    Apple and all those companies trying to force on us their recurrent payment business model have the right to try to convince us to do so but NOT FORCE IT ON US.

    Rossmann is a modern day hero and his advocating will result in better quality of life for all. 

    My hat is off to the writer of the article and appleibsider for taking a stance.


    I would argue that Rossmann is a bottom feeding conman using the “right to repair” bandwagon to bolster his own business interests.
    edited December 2022 williamlondonjibbaconstang
  • Reply 20 of 23
    jibjib Posts: 56member
    Louis Rossmann is a board-level repair person and it is in his interest for these parts to be available. I do not accept his premise that it would help the average (or even moderately skilled) consumer, who likely should NOT be doing board level repairs.

    The NY law requires companies to make assemblies available to those who want to install them, and this is worthwhile.

    Since companies like Apple do not usually even attempt board level repairs, he would have Apple supply parts that it uses primarily in the assembly process, and are likely not readily available here for repair purposes.

    As far as Rossmann, he does have a good reputation for his repairs.  He recently moved his business from NY to Austin Texas. Per wikipedia, " In August 2022, Rossmann announced his move to Austin, Texas, to work for tech independence organization FUTO; the repair business will follow in 2023." So one must consider his video with his business ties.
    baconstang
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