Third-Party Repairs on 2018 MacBook Pro and iMac Pro Still Possible (for Now)

Apple Australia

It was recently reported that third-party repairs for some of Apple’s newest Macs may be tightly restricted, but it may not be all doom and gloom just yet.

iFixit has a quick memo the publication has published on Friday evening, detailing in quick fashion that while things may not be super peachy, it’s also not the end-all scenario that early reports may have hinted at. Indeed, Apple does have its new “Apple Service Toolkit 2” or AST 2, and it does make it so that some repairs require diagnostics, but it looks like it’s not a make-it-or-break-it scenario just yet.

According to the publication, they got their hands on a brand new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar and went to work:

“We replaced the displays in two units, updated them to Mojave, and swapped logic boards. Verdict: We experienced completely normal functionality after each stage. That’s great news, but don’t celebrate just yet.”

That last bit, about not celebrating, pertains to Apple as a whole more than anything else. The memo points out that while this may not be as dire as some believe, Apple has run into hardware-related roadblocks in the past, including the Error 53 that disabled some devices, and let’s not forget “batterygate”.

And then there’s this bit:

“They may claim that this software is merely to keep their authorized service providers accountable, but the truth is, they have a kill switch in your laptop—they just haven’t flipped it yet. Mac repair may not be dead yet, but it’s certainly not safe. Apple has made that much painfully obvious.”

So while the proprietary software is out there, and Apple isn’t any stranger to these types of restrictions, it sounds like the kill switch in question isn’t being activated just yet.

Which will hopefully not give you nightmares heading into the weekend.

Our Take

There should be absolutely no doubt that while Apple lives with the fact that there are authorized repair shops out there, it’s only a matter of need based on the fact it doesn’t have its own retail stores in every city and town all across the globe. The company would very much like all of its customers to get first-party repairs and not need third-party options, but that’s the reality of the situation. Maybe it’s time for Apple to accept the fact that people use third-party repair shops, and stop trying to make it so difficult for those folks.

[via iFixit]