Apple will start letting consumers complete some of their technology repairs at home.
According to the Cupertino company, the new program, called “Self Service Repair,” will allow customers to buy parts from Apple for their products and perform repairs at home. Apple said it will also publish repair manuals online and offer tools to buy at the same prices authorized repair technicians pay.
“Creating greater access to Apple genuine parts gives our customers even more choice if a repair is needed,” said 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.”
The program is getting off the ground with the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13. Then “soon” after Apple will add M1-powered Mac systems to the mix. There’s no mention of older iPhones or iPad tablets, but depending on how things go, an expansion into those territories is not out of the realm of possibility. Or at least I hope not.
This will roll out in phases, the first of which will focus on the display, battery, and camera. Apple says these are the most commonly serviced parts, so it makes sense to start with those components before expanding to include “additional repairs” sometime in 2022.
The move marks a significant shift for the tech giant, which has historically restricted access to parts and repair manuals, as well as diagnostic and calibration apps, to its “authorized repair programs.” Without Apple-sanctioned ways to repair devices, some users have turned to experts on YouTube and at companies like iFixit to learn how to acquire parts and perform repairs on their own.
The Self Service Repair program will be available to users starting early next year in the US and expand to additional countries throughout 2022.