Apple has delivered on its promise and announced the launch of the Self Service Repair Store, an initiative that allows iPhone users to access components and manuals to repair their own devices without relying on technical support.
So far so good. Apple seems to be getting closer to the “right to repair” movement, but once we get into its prices and conditions, things change. In fact, it changes so much that it will be difficult for you to get a good deal. We will demonstrate this with a couple of examples.
Example 1. Imagine that your iPhone 13 Pro screen breaks. Apple sells you the screen repair kit for 269 dollars. Do you know how much it costs to repair it in their stores? 279 dollars.
Example 2. You want to replace the battery on that same model. Apple offers their official battery for $71. Having someone replace it for you in their stores costs $69. It’s just cheaper.
In both examples you have to take into account that to repair these devices you need some tools; you can buy them (in which case the repair will cost you almost as much as a new phone) but Apple gives you the option to rent them for a week for $49.
Not included here is the cost of the time you’ll have to spend on the repair or the risk that you may end up causing damage to the device as a result of that self-repair.
These prices also take into account that Apple gives you the option to return the defective component for Apple to recycle, which brings the total cost down. The company gives you $33.60 for the “old” screen and $24.15 for the battery.
Still, there are other repairs that may be worth doing at home. Changing the camera on an out-of-warranty iPhone 13 in-store costs $399: the do-it-yourself kit comes out to about $59 by returning the camera you replaced.
The service is launched in the United States on a limited basis: it allows to repair the iPhone SE, iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 with its variants. Apple has indicated that they will be offering these options for their Macs at a later date. We have no data on future availability of the service outside the United States.