New York Senate passes bill that could force Apple to loosen its grip on device repairs
June 10, 2021 at 21:49
The New York State Senate just delivered a chink to Apple's armor.
On Thursday, the New York legislative body passed the Digital Fair Repair Act.
"Nothing prevents third party repairers from being technically competent to complete digitalrepairs other than the lack of information being withheld by manufacturers," the bill reads.
Currently, companies with high end, proprietary devices and software often limit who can repair these products to the device makers themselves, and "authorized" third parties.
However, as the bill points out, it also gives them what some call monopolistic control over the pipeline.
"In too many instances, repairs of digital items are intentionally limited by the manufacturer," a memo accompanying the bill reads.
"Manufacturers will require consumers to pay for repair services exclusively through their repair division or manufacturer-authorized repair providers.
Microsoft and an Apple-hired company lobbied against a similar 2018 bill, and there is heavy lobbying underway on a "right to repair" bill in Nevada.
The fact that this bill passed against such well-funded opposition is part of what makes it a big deal.
In a landmark vote, right to repair just overwhelmingly passed the New York Senate.
#righttorepair — Kyle Wiens (@kwiens) June 10, 2021It could also force companies like Apple to share proprietary information it really doesn't want to.
Considering it passed 51 for and 12 against in the state Senate, there's a good chance the right to repair will become law in New York.