Long overdue? Perhaps. But it’s news millions will undoubtedly welcome with open arms, hearts, and – yes – wallets nonetheless. This past Wednesday, Apple inked another chapter in its lengthy consumer history by announcing the launch of a Self Service Repair program, which is scheduled to kick off in early 2022.
The decision represents a major shift in the tech giant’s notoriously rigid policies regarding who’s authorised to fix its products – as well the when, where, and how. Currently, the company claims more than 5,000 certified Apple service providers and 2,800 independent repair providers exist in its global network.
While, it’s definitely a positive step towards progress, as Vox has correctly noted, the new program simultaneously demonstrates how Apple still wants to exert a degree of control upon third-party repairs which will soon be happening on a kitchen table, work desk, and so forth around the world, all the way from Cupertino.
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In addition to the necessary repair manuals, over 200 different tools and components currently offered to independent repair shops will be available to purchase at the exact same price, with discounts on hand for returning used parts. And as indicated by the headline, the Apple Self Service Repair program won’t cover every single bit of kit ever sold by the Tim Cook-run outfit.
Initially, you’ll have no problem DIY fixing common issues with the display, battery, and camera of iPhone 12 + iPhone 13 models. Eventually, the average punter will also be equipped to tinker with Mac computers featuring Apple M1 chips (manufactured in-house). Beyond those key offerings, however, don’t hold your breath.
“Creating greater access to Apple genuine parts gives our customers even more choice if a repair is needed,” says Jeff Williams, Apple’s Chief Operating Officer.
“In the past three years, Apple has nearly doubled the number of service locations with access to Apple genuine parts, tools, and training – and now we’re providing an option for those who wish to complete their own repairs.”
“We wouldn’t have had an Apple had I not grown up in a very open technology world,” Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak stated earlier this year.
“It’s time to recognise the right to repair more fully.”
The Apple Self Service Repair program is set to officially launch in the US early next year before rolling out to additional countries throughout 2022 – keep an eye out for it.