Apple shift towards supporting used parts in iPhone repairs

Apple’s policy change allowing repairs on newer iPhones with used genuine parts, influenced by legislative actions such as Oregon’s ban on “parts pairing,” marks a significant step towards repair accessibility and consumer choice, although software alerts for third-party parts remain due to safety considerations and impending penalties for non-compliance.

right to repair

Apple announced a policy change allowing repairs on newer iPhones to use used parts like screens, batteries, and cameras. This decision reverses their previous software restrictions, which forced customers to use expensive Apple-approved parts.

The change was motivated by recent legislation in Oregon and other states against Apple’s restrictive repair practices. Specifically, Oregon passed a law banning Apple’s “parts pairing” practice, which linked parts to software and limited repair options. Apple will now allow the installation of genuine parts on iPhone 15 models without serial number pairing. The policy change will simplify and streamline repairs for iPhone users. This adjustment will apply to genuine Apple parts but not to third-party components.

While this change is a step forward, Apple will continue to use software to alert users if third-party parts are detected due to safety concerns. Oregon’s law requires Apple to allow customers to choose any repair parts, with penalties for non-compliance starting in 2027.

Why does it matter?

This policy change by Apple is significant because it enhances consumer choice and repair accessibility for iPhone users, aligning with legislative efforts to promote fair repair practices and reduce dependence on expensive Apple-approved parts, thereby empowering consumers and potentially fostering a more competitive and innovative repair industry. Oregon’s law underscores the importance of ensuring consumers can choose repair options freely, highlighting broader implications for consumer rights and technological sustainability in the digital age.