Steve Wozniak believes that companies must make repairs easier for hardware.
Steve Wozniak, the Apple co-founder, has criticized Apple’s opposition to the proper to-repair movement. He argued that Apple would not be here today if it couldn’t repair hardware without fear of reprisal.
Consumer groups and tech giants are fighting for the right to repair. However, this restricts repair options, limits authorized technicians and refuses official spare parts.
Wozniak now calls out Apple’s attacks upon the right-to-repair, imploring tech powerhouse to let owners fix and tinker their hardware as he did with Apple’s development.
Woz to Apple: It’s time to do the right things
Wozniak offered his support in a heartfelt video call of nine minutes to Louis Rossmann, the right-to-repair campaigner.
His argument’s core point? Apple would not have been able to get off the ground without people like him and Steve Jobs, who could disassemble hardware, modify it, and fix it with impunity.
They are not to be stopped. So why should they stop self-repair communities?
Wozniak also admitted that Apple II, Apple’s second consumer microcomputer, was successful because it shipped design schematics.
Apple reportedly lobbying against the Right-to-Repair
The Right-to-Repair movement calls on governments worldwide to make it a law to allow access to spare parts and information for hardware.
The right-to-repair laws in each country are different. For example, companies are not required to give detailed descriptions of their products to facilitate repairs or provide official spare parts that match specific schematics or machines.
Apple and other companies have allegedly lobbied heavily against the right to repair, convincing lawmakers that consumers will inflict injury on their own while trying to fix their hardware. One example is when an Apple lobbyist stated that iPhone users would potentially cause serious harm if they pierced the Lithium-ion battery packs in their devices.
Lisa Jackson, Apple vice president for Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, stated that Apple’s iPhones were “too complicated” to fix.
Right-to-Repair Arguments Gathering Pace
However, the winds are shifting. The UK and EU must ensure that consumer electronics, such as washing machines, hairdryers, and TVs, can be repaired ten years after purchase.
It means that companies should embrace design and manufacturing to give regular consumers more opportunities to repair their hardware without compromising other aspects. In addition, official spare parts should be easier to find through official channels.
Nearly every state in the US proposed a right-to-repair system for 2020. Only one form, Massachusetts, has yet to enshrine the bill into law in 2021. As more well-known names support the consumer right to repair, we can expect the balance to tip in favor of the consumers, pushing some power back to them.