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iFixit retroactively dings the iPhone 14 over Apple’s parts pairing requirement


iFixit is losing repair capabilities score on the iPhone 14. While the organization originally gave the phone a seven out of 10 to indicate high repairability, iFixit lowered that rating to four after taking into account the part-pairing requirements that make the device repairable. be a nuisance.

When iFixit announced its score for the iPhone 14 last year, it said it focused primarily on the device’s easy-to-repair design. Unlike its other devices, Apple included a rear glass panel that you can remove with basic repair tools, including a heating mat, suction handle, and opening pick. While this design change was notable at the time, iFixit acknowledges that it overlooked significant repairability hurdles built into iPhones in general.

These are the notifications that appear when a part is not paired with an iPhone.
Image: iFixit

Instead of simply swapping out one part for another, repair shops and do-it-yourselfers you must “pair” the part with the device through Apple’s System Configuration Tool. To do this, you must purchase an original part from Apple, enter your device’s serial number, and then pair the new part to your phone through Apple. If you use a replacement part or one from another iPhone, you will receive annoying notifications warning you that your iPhone contains original parts, even if it works as it should.

“Most major repairs on modern iPhones require approval from Apple,” writes iFixit CEO Kyle Wiens in a blog post. “You have to buy parts through their system and then validate the repair through a chat system. Otherwise, you will find yourself with limited or missing functionality, as well as annoying warnings.”

The pairing process not only makes repairs difficult for DIYers, but also for third-party repair providers who often use leftover parts from broken devices. iFixit says things “have gotten so bad that several repair professionals have told us they will leave the business entirely rather than navigate the labyrinthine maze of obstacles that Apple has erected.”

Although the iPhone 15 retains the same easy-to-repair backing as its predecessor, it will likely share the same parts pairing requirement as other devices in the iPhone lineup. Until Apple starts allowing users to seamlessly exchange used or non-genuine parts, the iPhone’s repairability score will likely remain on the lower end of the spectrum.

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