Not only is a modern phone impossible to open, everything is glued in. Even laptops are like this. I have even seen other manufacturers stop using underfill in their phones, just like apple. Probably to make broken phones useful as refurbs. This is leads to phones where chips come off easier (remember apples touch-ic issues and bend gate. That chip didn't have underfill, no proper soldering materials) and an increase in flexion damage.
A right to repair doesn't mean much if everything is glued and soldered into place anyway, and with everyone following apple I doubt anything will get better in that regard.
The only part that is using any significant adhesive is the battery, it can’t be fit because it needs to be able to grow, so it is fit into a too large space using a piece of adhesive tape to not move around.
The phone is built to be quickly servicable by Apple technicians, so obviously no cables are soldered, everything is using easy to fit ribbon connectors.
I’d have no training and found it easy to replace many parts in iPhones such as e.g the screen.
There are parts that Apple have made harder to user replace such as the fingerprint/home button module but that at least has good reason.
I recommend the ifixit step by step repair guides that also make it obvious that repairing a modern smartphone is not much different if it says google or Apple or Samsung on the back. The only major difference is a user accessible battery in some models.
There have also been rumors that some parts would not be replaceable unless you used original parts but I have never had any problems with “original” parts (eg refurb screen with new 3rd party glass), obviously if a phone required parts one could not buy it can’t be considered user serviceable at all.
They have tried to pull this stunt multiple times already. But have been forced to revert due to the amount of negative press it was getting. It's astounding that they tried it more than once.
I know that modifies the engineering (aka, the phone must be thicker) but it's not clear to me that there's much a of a real benefit to a phone being especially thin?
Over the lifespan (ownership) of e.g 3 years I usually replace the screen at least once, usually also some other component. Having the battery user replaceable wouldn’t make much difference, it would be 2 services instead of 3 in case the battery died.
I never replaced a battery on any of my 3 smartphones nor on any of the 4 dumbphones before them.
The option to repair exists in theory but in reality it may as well not.
Example 3 years ago the Iphone 6S was released. The 64GB was priced initially at $750 US. You can now find them for 235.
This is aprox 1/3 the original price.
Since labor is a relatively stable price, replacement parts don't tend to get much cheaper, and the cost of a used model is constantly going down its not shocking that devices that aren't cheap to repair rapidly become trash.
You already see this on everything from cars to fridges.
You would do well not to assume bad faith and call people liars without good cause.
$235 is 78% of the price.
As you can see, nothing of my words is a lie, so yes, try to do well and don't call me a liar.
Who is to blame for letting it get so far? I think its not just Apples fault, its governments fault not regulating them and consumers fault for still buying and even defending their practices (which you can very well observe in this thread).
Another interesting aspect in electronics is that things like memory can run faster if you solder it down -- connectors eat into your signal margin.
Just imagine the chaos if the technique that Apple and everyone else uses to marry the SOC and RAM is outlawed because it's less repairable than the way it used to be done?
I'm a fan of repairability, and low prices, high reliability, and high performance. It's not a one-dimensional problem.
Apple being the magnitude that it is now, cannot afford to make choices to attract folks like me with their 'reimagined' and 'breakthrough' innovations (?!).
This opens up an interesting segment for products that can afford to make design choices/offerings orthogonal to Apple.
Can you imagine a phone with 3000 mAh removable battery, an external memory card support for upto 128 Gb, a proper 3.5mm headphone jack and a proper rectangle screen capable of > 500ppi under 5 inches to fit your palm ? Let me sweeten the deal and price it at about $499 USD for this 'dated' tech.
Now, look around and tell me there isn't a market for this phone.
India manufacturers will be the next to look for, unless Apple changed gears.
I always buy the max storage iPhone, and every time I fill up maybe a third of it - after years of use.
The vast majority of people really don't care about this.
Apple's solution is to go sync those gigs on Apple's cloud and keep paying a monthly fee for it.
I paid Apple for making choices for me and building products for my wants and needs. Now, its made for the 'vast majority'.
I know more people like me and I see a niche market emerging that I hope someone addresses.
It's like an extra $150. Stretched out over 24 monthly payments. Big whoop.
> Apple's solution is to go sync those gigs on Apple's cloud and keep paying a monthly fee for it.
This is exactly what I do. Totally worth it.
> You can't swap it and if the phone dies, you've probably lost everything or it's going to cost you dear to get that data out.
You can download and back up your cloud data onto physical drives. All of my photos and music are stored on multiple redundant drives. And because it's also on the cloud, when I get a new phone all of my data is available instantly. It's seamless.
> I know more people like me and I see a niche market emerging that I hope someone addresses.
I see commercials for Android phones with SD card slots, so it's already being addressed.
No. Why then?
Lock-in, that's why.
Like someone else on this thread rightly said, Impracticality is the feature here and clearly intentional.
Apple may have gained customers like yourself. They sure have lost customers like me.
And to the best of my knowledge, the main reason wasn't lock-in or planned obsolescence: it was Steve Jobs' desire for as little as possible to get in the way of the aesthetic and design of the iPhone.
Sure, you may find that to be a dumb reason, but it's a far cry from the cartoon villain a lot of people seem to enjoy making Apple out to be, rubbing its hands together with a cackling laugh as it sits on its mountain of money. (...Well, the mountain of money part is true, actually.)
So I think the new tech can be a pain in the ass for regular users to repair. Their authorized shops have all the tools to do so. I bet the unauthorized shops have all the same tools required too.
> And the S6 doesn't have a removable battery, so what does that tell you about how Samsung felt about the engineering compromises they had to make with the S5 and all the rubber grommet-ing around its removable battery?
And I haven't bought a Samsung (or other mobile phone) since the S5, so what does that tell you about the quality of the recent mobile phone offerings?
If you are willing to make it a bit thicker than current phones...about 10% thicker than the original iPhone, you could use 5 NiMH AA batteries .
3000 mAh is about what the iPhone XS Max has. If you can get by with around 1900 mAh (about what an iPhone 7 has) you could get that down to 3 AA batteries, or 7 AAAs.
For people who are already using a lot of AA and AAA rechargeable batteries, this gives them a phone that easily fits right in, and as a bonus in an emergency you can use non-rechargeable batteries that you can buy from any convenience store.
 3000 mAh x 3.7 V = 11100 mWh. 11000 mWh / (2000 mAh x 1.1 V / NiMH AA) = 5 NiMH AA.
So, no. There is no market for this phone.
If no one is making the products you'd want them to make, it's probably because no one is buying them, after all.
Contacts/calendar/email can easily be synced to a new device and all the big utility apps are on both phone OSs.
With closing off everything they have more control and can cut out third party competition. It looks like they are successful with IBM's Micro Channel architecture strategy of the 80s.
User upgradeable, no planned obsolescence
Solid aluminum with regular screws—not screws designed to screw you and prevent user servicing, repairs or experimentation 
Popularity is not strongly correlated with "sensible and good"
- Yes in the sense that the glass needs to be glued (or rather taped as a double-sided tape is used) to create a waterproof seal as the small size of these devices does not allow for a more traditional clamp fit using a rubber gasket.
- No because it does not have to be the main body of the device to which the glass is glued/taped. I use the Motorola Defy+ , an 8 year old water/dust/shockproof Android device which shows a phone can be both waterproof as well as repair-friendly: the glass is glued to a frame which in turn is attached to the phone using screws. Disassembling the device is easy and quick, all it takes is a small Torx driver and a guitar pick. Assembling it is just as easy, the result will still be waterproof as long as all the rubber gaskets are fitted. I have 5 of these devices in use for different purposes ranging from 'dangerous work phone' to trailer camera and remote-controlled media player (using MPD for Android).
In short, it is possible to create waterproof devices which can be repaired without needing to break one-time seals.
I think it would be tragic if the iPhone looked like those Motorola devices. That thing looks hideous. This is strictly against Apple's design philosophy, and for good reason.
I always thought modern smart phones should have started as a black slab like the 2001 monoliths and just stopped there.
(* Technically I guess it's the iPhone 4 that came out same year as Defy, but arguably close enough)
There is no other manufacturer of computer equipment that comes close to maintaining service and usability on older devices than Apple at this point, and this has been shown over and over again by the resale value that their older devices still command. Many Android phones, even Nexus and Pixel devices only received updates for 1.5-2 years after their last sell date.
You’ll find very few companies that focus as much on environmental impact, and Apple recycles any product they have ever manufactured at their own expense. See here: https://www.apple.com/ca/environment/
More generally, I'm not sure 1.5 years vs 6 years is the correct order of magnitude when talking about environmental impact. Call me back when I can use a phone for 20 years.
As an avid tinkerer, it is shocking and disheartening to see the most popular products on both lists with the least scores !
What is the next generation of tinkerers going to muck their teens around ?
Fortunately IDA 7 Free and a Buspirate fixed that. Would be a shame if any PCIe cards would be accepted, wouldn‘t it...
FYI, the patch was less than ten bytes long. Inconvenient non the less.
With AppleCare+, that's $99 plus tax. Without, it's $549 plus tax—half the cost of the phone.
It also had a sealed case, voiding warranty.
The iPod was "sleek", and being able to open the case to replace the battery "would have made it less sleek".
This is probably what they're talking about.
Or be trying to detect things like we saw this week? 
If it were about privacy and security Apple could have the device display a warning when it detected tampering and leave it to the user how to act on this, a bit like some Android devices react when the bootloader is unlocked. They could also sell OEM spare parts which could be used by third-party repair shops to repair devices and use a verification routine to re-certify the device (which then would not display a 'tampered' warning, instead showing a 'repair log' in some hidden settings screen).
C'mon, at least finish the damn sentence. They were slowing down older devices to make sure that they wouldn't just literally shut down when the aging battery could no longer supply enough power for spikes of usage.
Theses 2 relatively recents vulnerabilities are pretty good reason to have to update.
The technique has nothing to do with security.
A kill-switch on unauthorized modifications has a massive positive impact for device security.
However, I think there's a happy middle ground here for people that want to use those cheap and unsupported parts. When the OS boots just make sure the user is made aware that they're running on unsupported hardware and recommend taking it to an authorized Apple repair shop if they want fix that.
The general consensus around right to repair that was discussed during the John Deere incident favored users. But now that Apple is (planning on) doing the same thing, it's reasonable?
With iPhones in particular, this is horrible -- replacing a battery is a terrible experience just from a purchasing point of view. The actual process itself is not bad (and well documented by sites like ifixit), but you don't know about the issues until you have the part in hand and it sucks.
This is a mess for Apple since in a lot of places, third party shops do not care about the parts they order. They put in a replacement part as asked, and now the machine works even worse. As an individual, I'm willing to put out money to a company like ifixit to ensure I've got a working part and I have someone to point to when it doesn't work. For a lot of mom and pop shops that have margins to worry about, suddenly the part actually working isn't that big of a deal.
I don't want Apple to have this much power, to be clear. The right answer is instead to open up the official supply chain to third party resellers and drop the anti-competitive price fixing. But I do get their image concerns with regards to the third party ecosystem -- it's not Apple locking out third parties, it's third parties just making terrible products.
That is my complaint, and that isn't Apple's fault. Apple is not making these poor knock-off manufacturers lie about their quality and capabilities of their replacement parts. I've bought plenty of third-party parts for Apple products (fans, reproduction heatsinks, panels, SSDs) that were just fine. But there is still a large market for cheap parts advertised as being equivalent to the OEM parts, but actually being significantly worse. I'm not sure how that is Apple's fault that the third party manufacturers decide to lie about their products. Apple is no saint in my mind, as much as I like their products, but this just isn't a fair accusation.
Apple's stance on "right to repair" is exactly about that. Introducing third parties into the ecosystem would drive down secondary market value for their products in a Gresham's law kind of way.
Their brand being tarnished is of no concern to me as a consumer and user of their product, and neither should it. They do with their brand as they wish, and I with the product I bought as I wish. If a producer wishes otherwise, they simply can't say, or claim that they are selling the product.
It's really just a simple case of Apple trying to have the cake, and eat it too.
That, and that Apple these days seem to be doing everything in their power to make their brand into a luxury brand, and you obviously can't have a luxury brand that the less well off can actually buy, and afford to use, even second hand. Some satire yes, but nevertheless how luxury brands mostly works.
I think you're missing something. Apple could very easily make mid range devices at lower prices but there's not much point. Apple's mid/lower tiers are the previous year's high-end models. Apple's engineers are very open about this if you ever get the chance to talk to them. I think it's a pretty slick system -- Apple has to design and manufacture fewer models, everyone gets a high-end device, nobody can really tell you got yours cheaper, and their devices remain luxury goods while being available at low price points.
So for consumers in the market for a secondhand Apple devices I see this change as extremely positive.
Again, I think the right middle ground would be allowing you to whatever you want to your device but at the cost of having it be unbranded.
You mean like Nexus phones or Surface tablets shout out to the world on the boot screen that their bootloader is unlocked when you had the audacity to install a different OS?
Okay, but instead they're tarnishing their brand by being hostile to consumers. I'd say that segment is quite a bit larger than any segment that experiences a shoddy repair job.
Got any sources to back up that claim that secondary Apple computers are being plagued by "cheap unsupported parts" and thus effectively causing a market for lemons .
"Extremely positive" might be a bit of a stretch, especially if you consider that we all share a planet with finite resources and finite ability to absorb pollution.
$279 for Front glass
$549 for Rear glass
These devices just hit the US a few days ago, so give it a few weeks and I would expect independent shops to offer back glass replacement in the $99-$149 range.
This is also why Right to Repair is so important. These tools are not built or sanctioned by Apple, but the demand is there, so third parties build, test, and verify them to help reduce prices for iPhone owners like you.
Also carrier insurance/replacement programs are also good options.
Where's that "private property" rule, I thought it's kind of holy testament in the USA.
You can, with enough work, make any computer—even one that’s not from Apple—into a working Mac. But there’s no amount of effort you can go to that will make Apple suddenly decide to offer warranty coverage on your Hackintosh.
I imagine the point here would be to effectively treat computers cobbled together out of externally-sourced Apple compatible parts (i.e. parts where the computer doesn’t “know” it’s not a Mac) as equivalent to Hackintoshes from a warranty standpoint.
This is partially justified—as it stands, a repair shop can actually take 50% of the parts from a Mac, replace them with compatible parts, then build a new computer from the 50% of parts you took out and other compatible parts, and end up delivering two Macs that would both be considered to be under warranty. (Not that they have AppleCare registrations, but that they’re under legally madated first-year warranty coverage in many jurisdictions.) The software Apple has developed circumvents this problem.
You might not agree with it, and it might have some other negative consequences... but what other solution is there to this particular problem? (I mean, besides eating the repair costs of—and even assuming legal liability for!—these “faux” Macs.)
I don't know, letting the machine run despite having a voided warranty would be a good start.
And how would you a describe something that stops the system from being used not as a "literal killswitch"?!
That's what I meant by "the computer thinks it's a Mac": Apple already has code in place to detect when you've used parts that don't belong in Macs, in your Mac. (That's DSMOS — "Don't Steal Mac OS X", a kernel extension that verifies the hardware on boot.) But if Apple used some random IC from Samsung or Broadcom, and then the repair shop replaced it with the same random IC from Samsung or Broadcom, but not sourced through Apple, then Apple can't tell—at least through any traditional means—that that computer has been tampered with.
And it's important to tell, because Apple does QA (burn-in testing, etc.) on the parts they install. So a random Samsung or Broadcom chip might be a lot more flaky than the same Samsung or Broadcom chip that has survived through Apple's testing gauntlet. And if Apple can't tell that the chip has been replaced, then they can't void your warranty—which means the flakiness of the replaced part becomes negative media coverage about Apple, rather than just being a story about third-party repair shops using non-QAed parts.
(Remember when Apple used those GPUs in old 2011-era MBPs that would overheat enough to de-solder themselves? Imagine if that wasn't Apple's fault, but rather the fault of repair shops replacing Apple's shipped discrete GPU with "the same" discrete GPU that hadn't been through Apple's QA.)
The verification software can detect this specific problem, by comparing lot numbers for each part in the system to lot numbers Apple's factories have actually received. Thus, even a lot of parts that Samsung created exclusively for Apple, but never shipped to Apple, and instead sold to some reseller, would show up as "invalid" here. As it should—because Apple hasn't picked out the bad parts from the lot.
Now that I think of it, a potentially-useful analogy is the 2007 mortgage crisis. People were buying CDOs (income from mixtures of mortgages, that pay out when people pay their mortgages) endorsed by respected institutions, who gave them high ratings. But the mortgages that went into these CDOs weren't actually verified in the way that the institutions promised, and so they failed a lot more often than they should have for the quality ratings they were given.
In this analogy, Apple products are like highly-rated CDOs; and the verification software being discussed here is what's required to actually check that the parts in the computer (i.e. the mortgages in the CDO) belong with that quality-rating slapped on them.
That would prevent chop-n-sell of parts...
Can some one recommend a good cloud MacOs vm solution for ios development? Or better yet, a rock solid hackintosh build that won't go to shit every update? I don't mind paying good money for a good product but this is ridiculous.
MacOs is a nice *nix OS but I am not willing to shell out for the apple tax when ubuntu is a perfectly good workhorse.