We reported late last year that Apple was planning a Self Service Repair program to allow tech-savvy individuals to fix their own iPhones at home, and the program went live in the US earlier this year.
That means iPhone owners in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden, and the UK can now purchase genuine Apple parts and tools from its online store. These kits will allow the repair of commonly-broken iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 components such as the display, battery, and camera.
(There’s no mention in Apple’s press documentation of iPhone 14 parts, but presumably, those are coming soon too.)
This doesn’t mean the average Joe will no longer have to visit a repair shop – fixing your own tech isn’t for the faint of heart. Apple recommends that only customers with experience repairing electronic devices attempt a home repair, and you’ll have to get your head around some hefty documentation and complicated tools in order to give it a try.
It’s also not likely to save much money, with some repair kits actually costing more than a certified replacement service from the Apple Store. That said, rental kits will be available for $49 for customers who don’t want to purchase a load of tools for a one-off fix, and Apple is offering partial refund credits for users who return the broken components for recycling.
But we do applaud Apple opening up access to genuine replacement parts and detailed repair manuals. For a company that’s often criticized for making its devices difficult and expensive to fix, this feels like a step in the right direction.
That said, the cheapest and easiest way to get a repair might still be to try your luck with the alleged secret policy offering free repairs to “nice” customers. Though we still can’t confirm whether or not that one is true!