Despite criticism, Self Service Repair still makes devices more repairable




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Apple recently expanded its Self Service Repair program to include Macs. Although the program itself still isn’t meant to be the end-all solution for Right to Repair advocates, it’s at least a move in the right direction.

Since the program was first launched, it has attracted criticism from Right to Repair advocates and repair organizations. That’s to be expected, since the program was never meant to be a perfect solution to the points offered by repair advocates, and has always been a way to try to head off right-to-repair and antitrust complaints.

There are even some responses suggesting that Apple’s expansion of the program to include Macs has made the company’s laptops “seem less repairable.”

Make no mistake, Apple’s Self Service Repair program isn’t perfect for anybody but Apple. However, there’s no getting around the fact that it does make Apple products more repairable.

Self Service Repair is still in its infancy

Through the web portal, customers can order a variety of resources to fix their own Apple devices. That includes genuine parts and tool kits that can be purchased or rented, as well as manuals and documentation.

A display heater included in Apple's Self Service Repair program.

A display heater included in Apple’s Self Service Repair program.

Earlier in August, Apple added the first two Mac devices to the program: the M1-equipped MacBook Pro and the MacBook Air. Although the program doesn’t cover every fix out there, it includes service resources for a number of common issues.

To start, Apple is only offering Mac-centric repair parts and manuals for its M1 models. However, it said that it’s going to add additional models to Self Service Repair later in 2022.

Criticism of Self Service Repair

Since the beginning, critics have said that the Self Service Repair program forced users through too many hoops to fix their own products. The U.S. Public Research Interest Group, which has been vocal in its criticism of Apple’s repair policies, said that the program still doesn’t mean that Apple…

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