Right to Repair

Should you have the right to repair the stuff you own? Or go to any number of local repair people at competitive prices? Or should you be obligated to go to the nearest city with a Genius Bar to find out that your iPhone has been in the same room as a glass of water at any point in the last 2 years, thereby voiding your warranty? Should HP be allowed to corner you into an exclusive ink subscription that bricks your printer when you don't print enough papers with HP Tm ink? Apple is finally joining the righteous side, supporting power and choice going to the people. But so far, only in California. Thoughts and opinions?

A Watershed Moment: Apple’s Endorsement of Right to Repair in California - Make: (makezine.com)

  • I doubt anyone else will click on that link.  They may, however, lick the glass of their display. lol

    That article almost seemed like it was written by Louis Rossmann.  He's covered most (if not all) of those topics.  Perhaps he's even referenced the article, but I was not paying close enough attention.

    I knew Rossmann wasn't the author, though.  The article is too well-written. :-)

  • Yeah, I got that HP rant from him. Not getting anything from them ever. Have not seen him talk about the Apple news, but likely he would. The world is becoming more open to general fixery. Good news. I don't expect people to read the article. Or the comments. Or anything under the title. I have learned how it goes here.

  • Hell yea we should be able to attempt to fix our own devices. Imagine a day where you pay a monthly fee to use a computer or laptop as a rental and without any rights to do anything to it. I can only handle Louis in short amounts of time, but I'm glad he's out there advocating and highlighting the issue.

  • Yes and no. I get why companies void warranties when/if you open up your device, since something out of there control could go wrong, but you should have full freedom to just do what you want.

  • Void a warranty if you open the hood and start screwing with stuff, I understand that, too. I think you may have convinced me of the only potentially acceptable argument for that. 

  • Yes. As someone who has worked on repairing products from heavy machinery to my church's keyboard this week, being able to repair is natural. Without being able to repair a product items become rented, never owned. More money is spent and more down time between when could be an easy repair.

    It is interesting that apple endorses the right to repair. I question how strong of a support when it comes down to the final bill. Other companies in the farm equipment industry had the same path of fighting against and then when the political winds changed started to be supportive of right to repair. 


  • I am a huge proponent of Right to Repair - and also that it voids warranties. If you think of your car, nothing is stopping you from working on it but in most cases, if you say... rebuild the transmission... you'll void whatever remaining warranty you had on it. I do think things like the OP said with HP's ink subscription are bogus. I bought it, it's my right as a consumer to run squid ink or liquid grass or whatever thru my HP printer - but if doing so damages the printer, then HP shouldn't be expected to fix it for free, either. Making devices with proprietary components and non-standard sizes is bad enough - forcing even the techie DIYers among us to a Genius Bar or warranty service is the worst. I avoid those products and companies at all costs.

  • Well said. Warranties are good and should cover everything within reason. Universal and interchangeable parts so I can get cheaper generics. Competition is the keystone of capitalism. Doesn't work without it.

  • Clearly, neither you nor  have wasted... I mean, spent... as many hours as I have — watching Louis Rossmann videos. lol

    In the United States, it is illegal to void a warranty for opening a device or attempting DIY or 3rd-party repair.  The burden is on the manufacturer — to prove that your actions caused damage (or further damage) to the device.  It appears, however, that it's not illegal to put stickers or other seals which read, "WARRANTY VOID IF DAMAGED OR REMOVED" — to trick you into believing that you've voided your warranty.

    You cannot exercise your rights if you don't know what they are.  Also, those stickers (and other statements) are valid in some jurisdictions — outside of the United States.

    Here's an example of Rossmann talking about the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (1975), from a year ago.  I chose the shortest video Rossmann has on the topic (not the best or the clearest):

    And here's a WSJ video, which autoplayed after I found the one above.  It's not relevant to my point, but I had never seen this before:

  • The WSJ reporter makes a comment (like), "And I don't have AppleCare+, which covers accidental damage."

    AppleCare+ covers accidental damage at a discounted rate.  In addition to what you pay up-front, you pay again, each time you get "accidental damage" service.

    From Apple's website¹, after buying 3 yrs of coverage ($99–$499, depending on the Mac model):

    1. Service coverage is available only for Mac and its original included accessories for protection against (i) defects in materials or workmanship, (ii) batteries that retain less than 80% of their original capacity, and (iii) unlimited incidents of accidental damage from handling, each incident being subject to a service fee of $99 for screen damage or external enclosure damage, or $299 for other accidental damage, plus applicable tax.

    Using her MacBook Pro as an example:

    • AppleCare+ = $399 + tax
    • "Other accidental damage" (not screen or enclosure) = $299 + tax
    • Covering only 1 incident of "accidental damage" every 3 years = $698 + tax

    Congratulations!  She (would have) saved $300 off her repair, at the Apple Store.  And it (would have) cost her only $399 + tax — in advance.

    What if she doesn't have an incident of "accidental damage" within 3 years?  In that case, she's donated to a worthy charity.  Apple has helped poor millionaires to become billionaires, since the time of... Forrest Gump and Lieutenant Dan.

    Did I mention that AppleCare+ auto-renews?  It's $399 + tax, every 3 years (unless she cancels).

    Give until it hurts!

    "Mama said they's my magic [shares].  Mama said they'd take me anywhere." - Forrest Gump lol

    ¹ AppleCare Products — Mac