Apple has often been criticized for not allowing third-party repairs for its products. Now, it’s IRP (Independent Repair Provider) program, which was meant to improve things, has been heavily criticized for being crazy and invasive to customers as well as repair shops.
A report from Motherboard, which was published earlier today, gives us an in-depth look at a copy of a contract that businesses have to sign to be able to enter the program. The IRP program was initially announced last August and was meant to offer more repair options to Apple users. The documents have never been made public earlier, so there’s a lot to learn from them.
The report sheds some light on how the Cupertino-based tech giant uses the program’s terms to make unannounced audits and inspections of businesses. It sounds okay at first, as you might think the company does so and takes extreme measures to stop third-party components from being used to repair Apple devices. However, Apple continues to reserve the right to inspect business for up to five years, even after the shop leaves the IRP program.
Moreover, the company also requires the shops to share customer information such as their names, phone numbers, and home address at its behest. According to the report, businesses receive the contract to the program after signing an NDA (non-disclosure agreement).
The report also explains how the company makes it extremely clear that the shop is not an Apple ASP (Authorized Service Provider). It also forces businesses to display an easily visible and prominent notice about it in front of the shop. The company also makes it necessary for repair shops to get written acknowledgments from customers that they are not an ASP.
Right-to-repair advocates and lawyers who went through the documents have termed the program crazy and invasive to both customers and businesses. Some companies chose not to enter the IRP program as Apple demanded a lot of customer information that wasn’t necessary.
Apple, on the other hand, was dismissive of the report and stated that it had received a tremendous initial response and a high level of interest in the program. The company also mentioned that it is working with businesses and repair shops to update the language used in the documents and address their feedback.[Source: Motherboard By Vice]