This morning, Apple announced the Independent Repair Provider Program:
Apple today announced a new repair program, offering customers additional options for the most common out-of-warranty iPhone repairs. Apple will provide more independent repair businesses — large or small — with the same genuine parts, tools, training, repair manuals and diagnostics as its Apple Authorized Service Providers (AASPs). The program is launching in the US with plans to expand to other countries.
“To better meet our customers’ needs, we’re making it easier for independent providers across the US to tap into the same resources as our Apple Authorized Service Provider network,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer. “When a repair is needed, a customer should have confidence the repair is done right. We believe the safest and most reliable repair is one handled by a trained technician using genuine parts that have been properly engineered and rigorously tested.”
The Independent Repair Provider program is designed for companies interested in offering out-of-warranty repair service for iPhones. Qualifying companies can gain access to Apple genuine parts, tools, training, service guides, diagnostics and resources to perform a variety out-of-warranty iPhone repairs, such as iPhone display and battery replacements.
As you may imagine, Rene Ritchie has posted a good explainer of the pros and cons of the new program:
I for one think this is a good move. Many, many people live in parts of the country without Apple Stores or AASPs, and having access to genuine Apple parts — and trained installers — is important as iPhones become more and more complex. The “Right to Repair” folks make good points, but Apple isn’t going to play ball with the idea that everyday people should be able to replace components inside their iPhones. In that reality, this may be as good as it gets for a while.