In July, the House Judiciary Committee pressed Apple over its device repair policy, suspecting it of anticompetitive behavior. Kyle Ander, Apple’s vice president for corporate law, responded, but was accused of misleading the public with vague explanations.
Apple has previously been accused of deliberately exaggerating the difficulty and danger of users repairing their phones themselves, and of obstructing efforts by third-party repair shops to repair genuine spare parts. In his testimony, Mr. Ander repeatedly denied the allegations on apple’s behalf.
Apple’s main argument is that the iPhone is so technologically charged that ordinary people cannot repair it without special training, and that repairs can be dangerous and cost more than Apple charges. This is the first time Apple has publicly unveiled its repair policy.
Asked why it was preventing third-party repair shops from receiving genuine spare parts and information, Apple said: “Repairs that do not replace screws or covers properly may leave a legacy of damage to components such as batteries, causing overheating or injury.” For these reasons, we believe that it is essential that repair shops receive appropriate training when obtaining spare parts and repair manuals. ”
But it’s clear that security is not Apple’s primary concern. Otherwise, Apple is fully capable of providing training and repair manuals.
“Apple’s argument is ridiculous,” Nathan Proctor, head of the PIRG Maintenance Rights campaign in the US, said in an email. Apple wants its customers and governments to accept that, despite the existence of a maintenance monopoly, it is a beneficial monopoly, for our benefit. ”
And the threat of a battery explosion is exaggerated. Gay Gordon-Byrne, executive director of trade group Repair.org, said: “Apple thinks they need to protect consumers from batteries, so they’re going to make that decision.” But we’ve replaced hundreds of batteries and screens for legislators, and the fixes they’ve seen are not so complicated! ”
Apple also seems unable to answer the basic question of why its repair services must be tightly controlled. When members of Congress asked Apple how many technicians it had, the company said it had tens of thousands of technicians. Asked how much apple scored from repairs, the company said that “the annual cost of providing repair services has exceeded the revenue generated.”
However, many people are not convinced that Apple is losing money on repairs, and Apple’s answer seems vague. For years, Apple had to offer free repairs to defective products. For example, the MacBook recall, Apple did not replace a few keys on the device, but replaced half of the computer, but it is covered by the warranty, confused with expensive paid repairs, and then it is completely misleading the public and the U.S. Congress.
Originally published as Apple charges $549 to repair iPhone X backpanel glass and $199 to repair iPhone 11 screen If the customer is a member of Apple Care, a repair subscription service, they will be charged up to $199 and $9.90 per month in advance for the $29 repair service. Mr Proctor said: “It is shocking that Apple claims to have lost money on repairs because they charge far more than third parties, which can already profit from repairs.” ”
The U.S. House of Representatives also asked whether Apple had taken action to prevent consumers from seeking repair services outside its ecosystem. Apple denies this, saying: “Customers are free to get repair services from any store of their choice.” ”
This may also be wrong. Apple has twice introduced iOS updates to block third-party fix screen touch. People whose phone screens are broken or repaired by non-Apple official stores will find their touchscreens will not work after the iOS update. The problem is so powerful that many stores have had to stop repairing the iPhone or refund affected customers. On the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro, a pop-up window keeps reminding users that their screens use unverified replacement parts.
Apple is fighting a grassroots movement for maintenance rights. Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have both called for universal maintenance laws. Twenty states are considering local maintenance laws, with Massachusetts being the strongest. “Apple should let us fix our own things and provide spare parts, service information and diagnostic software to everyone,” Proctor said. “