Apple has unveiled a new Independent Repair Provider Program that could make it easier to find a place to get a broken iPhone fixed.
The company says third-party electronics repair shops that want to provide service for out-of-warranty iPhone repairs can apply to become a member of the program, which allows them to purchase components, receive training, service guides, and diagnostic tools from Apple.
While Apple is calling this a new program, it’s actually more like an offshoot of the company’s Apple Authorized Service Provider Program, albeit an offshoot that lowers the barriers for entry… and seems to be restricted to iPhone repairs at the moment.
The good news is that Apple has fewer requirements for membership in the new program, and it will be cheaper for participants to take their certification tests. That means we’re likely to see a much larger number of officially sanctioned independent repair shops using genuine Apple parts rather than third-party components.
But one big difference between the two programs seems to be that while the AASP program covers “any Apple product” including iPads, Macs, and other devices, the IIRP program only mentions iPhones.
So while it may be easier to find an iPhone repair shop using high-quality components soon, you may still need to look a bit harder to find a place for out-of-warranty MacBook repairs.