Morelle, repair shop owners, celebrate Apple’s move toward right to repair

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Some welcome news this week for people who have iPhones. Apple is finally allowing some users to fix their own phones.

News10NBC spoke with Congressman Joe Morelle (D, NY-25), who was pressing for this change, and a repair shop owner.

Jessa Jones founded iPad Rehab in Honeoye Falls. Her company is one of the few independent repair shops in our area that could fix your smartphone, and there’s a reason for that.

For years if you owned an Apple product and it broke you had three choices: Either take it in to an Apple store for repairs, upgrade, or take it to an independent retailer like Jessa Jones. She said she was surprised by Apple’s announcement that it will give access to some of their genuine Apple parts and tools for consumer repairs for two of the newest iPhone models and eventually some Mac computers.

"People have believed for years that they were going to void their warranty. That’s never been true. Your warranty is protected under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1974, and simply opening your phone can never void your warranty," Jones said.

Congressman Morelle sponsored the Fair Repair Act. He called the announcement a move in the right direction. He also said companies such as Apple, and even farming equipment giant John Deere are known for making products that can only be fixed by company-approved technicians.

"If the manufactures embedded in that equipment, either software, or other things devices, which will make it impossible for you to repair it. I think they have the obligation to give you diagnostic codes to give you the tools necessary to do the repairs yourself," Morelle said.

Jones added, "Now people understand that phones are easier to fix. Maybe they’ll even want to try it themselves, and if not they certainly kind of validate the idea that you can go down to your local corner repair shop, and get your phone working again without having to go back to the manufacturer for a simple screen replacement."

To which Morelle said, "I believe that Apple was feeling pressure on this. I think that they realize that they’re in the wrong."

Although this is a big milestone announcement by Apple, Jones said right now these repairs are limited to screen and battery replacements.