Motorola joins right to repair movement with DIY repair kits
When your smartphone breaks it’s the absolute worst. No longer is it an immaculate melding of glass and metal – instead it’s a chipped, cracked, relic that looks as if you’ve neglected it all its life. To resolve the problem you’d usually have to send your device back to its manufacturer, paying a hefty fee for labour and parts.
That’s all about to change, however, as Motorola has become one of the first smartphone manufacturers to back iFixit’s right to repair movement. Now, instead of sending your phone away to be fixed, Motorola is offering customers DIY repair kits so they can do it themselves.
As part of this movement, Motorola is also making its phones easier to repair. Now customers can buy replacement parts of all of its recent phones and head to iFixit to get the parts they need for older devices like the Moto X, Moto Z and older versions of the Moto G4 and Moto G5. All kits come with genuine, Motorola-branded replacement parts and the tools and instructions needed to fix your device.
“Motorola is setting an example for major manufacturers to embrace a more open attitude towards repair,” wrote iFixit in a blog post. “For fixers like us, this partnership is representative of a broader movement in support of our Right to Repair. It’s proof that OEM manufacturers and independent repair can co-exist. Big business and social responsibility, and innovation and sustainability, don’t need to be mutually exclusive.”
Each repair kit comes with a suction handle, precision screw bits, ESD-safe tweezers, spudger, opening tool and magnetised driver.
Currently Apple requires users to go into its stores or send off their iPhones for costly repairs. At the moment it’s offering up a reduced-price iPhone battery replacement scheme across the UK, but it’s still a far cry from actually letting users fix these problems themselves.
For some manufacturers, it’s an issue of avoiding warranty being voided, or users tampering with their devices. However, the cynic in me also believes that it’s likely a measure to ensure people stay within a manufacturer’s services and don’t artificially extend the life of their phone beyond intended refresh cycles.
Other manufacturers are yet to follow in Motorola’s footsteps, but hopefully it means that many mid-range and budget device manufacturers may soon offer similar schemes.