Apple will begin making parts and tools available for customers to fix their own devices, a significant shift in longstanding policies over who can make repairs to the costly gadgets.
The Self Service Repair program announced on Wednesday (US time) will initially allow people to fix the display, battery and camera for their iPhone 12 and iPhone 13. Later, customers will be able to repair Mac computers with M1 chips. The service will only be available in the US starting early next year, but will expand to more countries throughout 2022.
Under the self-service program, Apple customers will be able to buy those parts directly to perform their own repairs after reading a manual. Apple said the online store will start with about 200 parts and tools aimed at fixing the most common issues with displays, batteries and cameras on iPhone 12 and 13 models.
The self-service repair program comes after years of pressure from consumer groups have resulted in Apple providing greater access to repair manuals and genuine parts.
Apple and other tech companies have kept tight control over repairs by limiting the supply of parts and tools to certified stores. More than half of American states have considered laws that would force electronics companies including Apple and Microsoft to make it easier for customers to repair their own devices, but many have been voted down or dismissed.
Apple said it currently has more than 5,000 certified Apple service providers and 2,800 independent repair providers.
“Creating greater access to Apple genuine parts gives our customers even more choice if a repair is needed,” Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer, wrote in the statement.
Customers will be offered the same pricing on parts and tools as independent repair shops and will be able to return their used parts to Apple after completing a repair to receive a discount.
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