Whatever the specific motivations might be, giving consumers more access to repair their own electronics is generally a net positive. After years of referring consumers to Genius Bars, Apple announced Self Service Repair in late-November 2021. The program effectively lets users buy parts and rent tools to fix their devices at home.
Last April, the program opened up to the iPhone 12 and 13, with select MacBooks (2020 M1 MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro and the 14- and 16-inch 2021 M1 Pros) appearing in August. Starting June 21, Self Service Repair is opening up to newer models, including the full iPhone 14 line, along with the 13-inch M2 MacBook Air and Pro.
There’s some international expansion here, as well, with repair for the iPhone 12 and 13’s camera and top speaker module arriving in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the U.K.
The company has streamlined its System Configuration software, which is designed to ensure that repairs have been made according to plan. Apple writes:
Running System Configuration after a repair authenticates genuine Apple parts, updates firmware, and calibrates parts to ensure maximum performance and quality. Additionally, for repairs involving biometric authentication, such as Touch ID or Face ID, System Configuration links the biometric sensors to the Secure Enclave on the logic board to ensure device security and customer privacy.
Self Service Repair arrived amid growing support for right to repair legislation. Other top players, including Samsung and Google, have added similar programs, while smaller firms like FairPhone and Framework have made repairability a core focus of their hardware.
As ever, however, Apple cautions people away from making their own repairs. “For the vast majority of users who do not have experience repairing electronic devices,” it notes, “visiting a professional authorized repair provider with certified technicians who use genuine Apple parts is the safest and most reliable way to get a repair.”