STATEMENT: Apple inches forward on expanded repair access

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BOSTON — Today, Apple announced that it would be expanding its Independent Repair Provider (IRP) program to include computer repair. Previously, the program only covered cellphone and tablet repair. Earlier this summer, the company touted another small increase to its IRP program. The expansion of the IRP program is generally viewed as resulting from pressure by Right to Repair advocates. 

In response to the announcement, Nathan Proctor, U.S. PIRG Right to Repair Campaign Director, issued the following statement:

“Apple giving consumers more options for fixing their laptops is a welcome step. More repair options means lower costs and less waste — which is why the Right to Repair campaign has been pushing Apple and other manufacturers to share parts and service information more broadly. 

“However, the latest expansion of the IRP program will have the same problems as earlier steps. First, the leaked version of the contract to join this program is onerous, invasive and goes far beyond what we would expect from an ‘independent’ program, including requiring sharing customers’ personal information with Apple. 

“Apple responding to our campaign is evidence that the company absolutely can give us access to what we are asking for, and it has continued to inch closer to our requests. 

“We hope to see further expansion of repair options. At the end of the day, we either have a free market to fix the devices we own, or we don’t. And while there are tangible benefits for consumers and the planet from the easing of restrictions, our goal remains the same: Just let us fix our stuff.”