Earlier this year, when Apple appeared in a Bloomberg Right to Repair report that stated how the company works against specific repair bills, things were not looking great. This report stated how Apple and other companies like Amazon, Microsoft and Google are against Right to Repair bills and the very movement itself. Now, another report has surfaced online, and this time, it is by Joanna Stern of Wall Street Journal.
Stern sets out on a journey with water damaged MacBook Air 2020 and MacBook Pro 2017. Further, she took them to several New York City gadget repair shops. Stern’s primary objective with this report was to explore the deeper parts of MacBook repair costs in the city. So without any further ado, let us take a quick look at what she unveils in this journey.
Apple MacBook Repair Cost
Firstly, Stern took the two laptops to official Apple repair centres, where the brand quoted $999 to repair the MacBook Pro. Now, this converts to approximately Rs—73,000 in the Indian currency. Therefore, the MacBook repair cost breakage is $899 (roughly Rs. 65,694) for accidental damage repair and $100 (roughly Rs. 7,307) as labour cost. On the other hand, the MacBook Air price to repair was quoted at $799, which is approximately Rs. 58,387. However, it costs $999 to get a brand new one so, is the repair worth it? Would Right to Repair have made it cheaper and easier to repair the MacBooks? The answers to these questions are something that Stern tries to take on via the report.
Now, Stern takes the laptops to an Apple-certified repair shop called Mike’s Tech Shop, and here, there is a new revelation about the MacBook repair cost. This particular shop quoted a staggering $1,170 (roughly Rs. 85,498) to fix the MacBook Pro and $870 (roughly Rs. 63,575) for the MacBook Air repair. Upon asking why the shop is charging more than Apple itself, Stern comes to know that small shops like Mike’s Tech Shop actually sends the MacBooks out to an Apple repair centre to get repaired. They charge extra as the labour cost of carrying out the entire process. Now, this is exactly where it can be established why Right to Repair bills need to come into existence.
Further, Stern visits two independent repair shops, namely, Simple Mac and Rossmann Repair. Rossmann quoted a total of $325 to replace the individual damaged parts from another MacBook’s motherboard. These parts include the damaged Wi-Fi, power and LCD chipsets.
However, the MacBook Air could not be repaired at all. Besides, they did not have the right parts or more device information even to attempt the repair in the first place. Right to Repair bills would have made it much easier as these very shops would have access to Apple genuine parts and help customers out quickly.
Right to Repair: What Apple has to say
Coming to Apple’s side of things, firstly, the company would not have replaced the individual parts. Instead, they would replace the entire motherboard with a new one, which would lead to Apple repair cost staggeringly more. “Apple has found individual chip replacement to be unreliable,” an Apple spokesperson stated.
Another Apple spokesman says that “We believe the safest and most reliable repair is one handled by a trained technician using Apple-genuine parts,” an Apple spokesman said. “We continue to expand Apple’s offerings to meet our customers’ needs better.” However, Apple still does not really seem to be for Right to Repair. The brand did come up with an Independent Repair Program but, it extended to only Apple-certified technicians. This closed the doors to a lot of independent repair shops.
The good news? FTC has recently adopted a brand new Right to Repair policy. Now, this will allows companies like Apple to be less strict about partnering with third-party repair shops. So although it is difficult to say what the future of Apple repair costs holds for us, something good is definitely on the way.
Tech enthusiast, gamer and somebody for whom music acts as a life capsule. Nothing fascinates me more than catchy headlines and John Mayer's guitar mastery.