Authorized repair service providers receive special machines for the repair of broken iPhone displays. Previously, Apple did not even officially confirm the existence of the “Horizon Machine”. It seems to respond to the law for a “right to repair”.
By the end of 2017, Apple will provide its dedicated machines for repairing broken iPhone displays authorized repair service providers. Around 400 repair centers from third parties in 25 countries are to be called the Horizon Machine.
Until now, the iPhone manufacturer had reserved the use of the repair stations to its almost 500 retail stores and its own repair centers, to which defective devices can be embeded. He had not only kept the machines working like a state secret, but had never officially confirmed their existence. Now reporters from Reuters were allowed to view the machines and even take photographs.
Apple justifies the move with ever-longer waiting times in its busiest retail stores. “It was our ambition to improve our reach,” said Brian Nauman, who is responsible for the service delivery of the iPhone manufacturer. Apple also denied that its opening to political pressure. In fact, eight US federal states have initiated legislation to safeguard consumers’ right to repair “. Manufacturers are to be obliged to supply repair manuals, diagnostic tools and original spare parts to independent technicians and consumers at fair prices.
Legislators are thus responding to the foreclosed repair services of Apple and other technology companies that make it impossible or at least aggravate repairs by independent service providers, for example by refusing to supply the necessary spare parts. Even if it is not a big deal at first glance, it is a global billion dollar business. Analysts estimate Apple’s repair sales for its products at an annual rate of 1 to 2 billion dollars.
Apple Repair Services and other manufacturers are failing to enact the planned laws for a “right to repair” to remove the disadvantages of smaller service providers. They allowed lobbyists to be active in the countries concerned in order to prevent the projects. Security was also a lobbying argument. “Apple tells me that would be a bad thing, because then Nebraska becomes a mecca for hackers”, Nebraskas senator Lydia Brasch reported after visiting Apple’s local Cheflobbyist.