My names Ben and I void warranties.
I even have the shirt to prove it.
I just want to block quote this whole thing, but I am the target audience and so will try and refrain from gushing too much about this whole article.
(Bottom line, if you know how to use, or own a screwdriver, you need to read the whole thing).
If you’ve tried to open any iDevice—iPad, iPhone, iMac, any of them—within the last four years, you’ve come face-to-face with Apple’s very small, five-pointed Do Not Enter sign. It’s an overt declaration that your phone, or your computer, or your tablet is not really yours to tamper with, a public statement that you are not qualified to fix your own things.
The whole article focuses a little too much on Apple, but he does make the point that they are not the only ones doing this, they are just the most well known and most of their devices are well known.
“For a lot of these newer devices, manufacturers want to say ‘We want to be the only ones to repair it’ because they make more profits off the repairs. They’ve found lots and lots of way to do this. Intellectual property law, contracts, end user license agreements, lots and lots of ways to try to make sure you can’t do what you want with your stuff.”
So, Apple has lots of ways to keep you out of your devices. But the screw is a good place to start.
This is pretty much the guts of the whole thing. Manufactures do not want us to open their goods. They do not want us repairing or modifying them.
“Your competition is not each other,” Wiens tells the 100-or-so repairmen and women (though it’s mostly middle-aged white men) who showed up to his introductory talk at the conference in New Orleans. “We’re competing with the garbage dump.”
This is the bit that is near and dear to my heart, throwing out ‘perfectly’ good but broken tech.
I really miss the days of getting stuff from around Ballarat and fixing it.
If I recall correctly it was one of the things that ended up getting Gary and I in the same loop… Somehow he found out that I was replacing caps on computer motherboards and ended up doing a bunch of them for him.
One of my best memories is replacing a bunch of caps in one board well after sunset for one of his customers because a repair was going to be much quicker and cheaper than a full rebuild. Our late night repair session made a difference, to Gary, to his customer, to their customers.
The point is this, repaired electronics can have a long life. I am still using one of the laptops I got off Gary over 8 years ago!!
Make no mistake, repairing electronics is big money….
This is by design. Americans spent more than $23.5 billion repairing and replacing broken smartphones between 2007 and 2014. In 2013, an analyst reported that Apple hoped to save $1 billion by repairing broken iPhones instead of replacing them, which gives you an idea of just how big the repair market is for the world’s most popular phone. Apple wants as large a share of that as possible. Because it controls the hardware, it’s also trying as best as it can to control the parts market.
For those of us that open things up, that fix the broken, it is not just about the money.
This isn’t all about pushing back against Apple or any other company. It’s not all about saving the environment, either. Fixing things feels good.
That right there is why I have the shirt, that right there is why I miss my mates. We all had the same culture, the same mindset. We all got a kick out of helping each other fix stuff.
My names Ben and I void warranties.