WE LOVE A BIT OF DIY here at the INQUIRER, and though that mostly involves assembling IKEA furniture, we could soon be repairing Moto phones.
That's because Motorola has decided that sending broken handsets back or paying third parties a wad of cash to repair its phones is a faff and that users should have the chance to fix borked handset themselves.
As such, Lenovo's phone maker has become one of the first smartphone firms to back iFixit's Right to Repair movement, which as the name suggest, is iFixit's semi-campaign to get phone makers to provide their customers with the tools to carry out DIY repairs.
Such backing means Motorola has supplied iFixit with the official Motorola OED Fix Kits for various Moto handsets.
The kits includes stuff like a suction handle (stop tittering at the back), an opening tool and a spudger; basically, the kind of tool the boffins at iFixit use to tear down gadgets to see how easily they can be repaired - something that hasn't fared well for Microsoft's Surface Pro 6.
The kit can be purchased on iFixit's online store for $39.99, which isn't exactly cheap when you consider that Moto handsets aren't exactly staggeringly expensive. But then again it's better than handing over a cracked phone to some grinning oik behind the till to that dodgy looking shop that claims to unlock phones regardless of their encryption, then wants to charge you nearly £100 for it.
While iFixit will be able to flog some repair kits on its site, the organisation's Elise Barsch noted it's one way of empowering phone owners and keeping electronics waste down.
"Some folks mistake our size and mission for meaning that we don't want to work with larger manufacturers. That's not true. In fact, most manufacturers don't want to work with us. But not Motorola—they're the first major smartphone manufacturer in support of what we stand for. And they're a pioneer of the mobile phone and serve tens of millions of customers around the world, to boot," said Barsch.
"For fixers like us, this partnership is representative of a broader movement in support of our Right to Repair. It's proof that OEM manufacturers and independent repair can co-exist.
"Big business and social responsibility, and innovation and sustainability, don't need to be mutually exclusive. Motorola is setting an industry-leading example of a company that's looking forward—not just six months ahead to next quarter's margins, but decades ahead when devices are damned for the landfill.
"And the landfill is where many devices end up in a manufacturer-dominated repair market: E-waste is a 50 million ton global problem. The batteries smartphone-makers are stubbornly gluing into their phones contributed to 40 per cent of the past two years' e-waste recycling fires in California. We simply don't have time to carry on with this throwaway culture."
That's a view we can get behind, which is one of the reasons we're a bit sad Google's modular phone ambitions in the form of Project Ara was canned. µ
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