Right To Repair: You might have heard about the “Right To Repair” movement from someone or from somewhere. Or maybe you’ve not heard of it at all and know next to nothing about it. The truth is, whatever category you fall into, this movement affects you so long you buy electronic devices.

So, what is the “Right To Repair” movement actually about and why should you be concerned? How does it affect daily users and why are major companies not willing to implement it? Well, let’s find out what Right to repair means.

See Also: Samsung partners with iFixit to offer Self-Repair options for its Galaxy devices

What is Right to Repair

Right to repair is a movement to allow users to have access to repair their own electronic devices. It also aims at forcing companies to make documentation, tools, and parts available for easy fixing of electronic products.

But you might ask, are companies not doing that already? Well, not quite. Here is the current situation of electronic repairs in the industry right now.

Why Right to Repair?

Most electronic makers including phone makers are making it very difficult for users or third-party repair parties to open and repair a broken phone. These companies lock their electronic devices with software or limit access to parts and tools that can be used to repair these devices.

Right to repair

So, this will force every user to go back to these makers for repairs which are usually more expensive and takes a longer time. In a sense, you don’t completely own the device even after purchase because you can’t repair the device without the maker.

See Also: Samsung Launches the “Your Self” door-to-door repair program in Canada

According to some of these companies, only the manufacturing company is able to repair its own device and an authorized third party might cause more damage. Although this argument is understandable it also sounds very selfish. For example, if these companies make documentation, parts, tools, and training available, there will be more third-party repair centers that can do the job neatly without any damage.

But right now, these manufacturing companies are hiding the needed tools, parts, documentation, and training needed for successful repairs of these devices.

Note to point fingers but let’s take Apple as an example. Apple recently launched the iPhone 13 series and the company made it very difficult for third-party repairs. For example, the screen, camera, FaceID, and other components of each iPhone 13 are locked with software. This means the part of one iPhone 13 model won’t work in another iPhone 13 model. That’s insane.

See Also: Apple to Fix Face ID issue after Third-Party iPhone 13 Screen Repair

Even after launching a self-repair program, you still need an Apple engineer to calibrate new parts to an iPhone 13 to successfully change any part. And once this process is done, you can’t use the iPhone 13 part you just swap in any other iPhone 13 except you have to contact an Apple engineer again.

But you might ask, what are the benefits of this Right to Repair movement. Well, there are a few benefits.

Benefits of Right to Repair

  1. Affordable Repairs
  2. Healthy competitions
  3. Quick access to repair (i.e you can repair your device from anywhere)
  4. It protects your right to open your devices
  5. Keeps independent repair centers in business
  6. Increased access to documentation, tools, and parts
Right to repair in the US

Right-to-repair laws have been proposed in over 38 states in the United States. These laws focused on protecting three rights of owners and independent repair shops, namely

  1. The right to have access to documentation
  2. The right to have access to parts
  3. The right to have access to repair tools

Australia and the EU parliaments are also considering passing laws in favor of the right-to-repair movement. Now, you might ask, why can’t these manufacturers just give room for the right to repair? well there might be a few reasons

  1. These manufacturers solely make money from repair
  2. They can sell parts at a more expensive price
  3. To keep users in their buy, sell, and repair cycle

So, what next on right to repair? Not everyone is on board yet and while manufacturers offer arguments about third-party repair, these excuses are not enough. Users and third-party repair shops also have rights.

If you live in the US, Canada, Europe, or Australia, you can join the right to repair movement using any of the links below

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