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EU Parliament Calls For Longer Lifetime For Products (eubusiness.com) 397

An anonymous reader shares a report: Europe's Parliament called on the Commission, Member States and producers Tuesday to take measures to ensure consumers can enjoy durable, high-quality products that can be repaired and upgraded. At their plenary session in Strasbourg, MEPs said tangible goods and software should be easier to repair and update, and made a plea to tackle built-in obsolescence and make spare parts affordable. 77 per cent of EU consumers would rather repair their goods than buy new ones, according to a 2014 Eurobarometer survey, but they ultimately have to replace or discard them because they are discouraged by the cost of repairs and the level of service provided. "We must reinstate the reparability of all products put on the market," said Parliament's rapporteur Pascal Durand MEP: "We have to make sure that batteries are no longer glued into a product, but are screwed in so that we do not have to throw away a phone when the battery breaks down. We need to make sure that consumers are aware of how long the products last and how they can be repaired."
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EU Parliament Calls For Longer Lifetime For Products

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  • No problem! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Brett Buck ( 811747 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:04AM (#54747641)

    As long as people are willing to pay 2-3x the current cost, they can have a TV with replaceable parts and the infrastructure required to support it. Of course, many people won't be able to buy these products, but boy howdy, if they do, it will really be great.

    • Its better than that. You can already repair almost everything simply by spending 2-3x its cost.

      Look at what it costs to fix a car now. Wait... you insurance company didnt pay to fix it? Yeah. its cheaper to just pay you the assessed value.

      See, it isnt just corporations making things less repairable or more expensive to repair, its also these government institutions ... like the one this article is covering.
      • I get the impression you are suggesting that the EU parliament is just gassing on about something it doesn't understand. If so, I have to object most strenuously, because they seem pretty on-the-ball all the rest of the time.

        • Do you really think those politicians understand anything about manufacturing, engineering, or the desires of the public? Really?
          • Do you think you do?
          • Re:No problem! (Score:5, Insightful)

            by BarbaraHudson ( 3785311 ) <barbarahudson@gm ... om minus painter> on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:34AM (#54747951) Journal
            Engineers have been capable of building devices that are easier to repair all the time - but only when that's one of the goals. Built-in obsolescence has been a thing for decades. Desktop computers are a lot easier to diagnose and repair than the original PC. Laptops? Ha!
        • Did you really just suggest that a building full of politicians seemed "pretty on-the-ball all the rest of the time"? And you said it about the EU? Am I missing the joke here or something?
        • They're not a finely-tuned clock; they can be wrong sometimes.

          For one thing, overbuilding is generally-bad. If you put a 7-cent part in a machine where a 3-cent part typically falls within the lifespan of the machine, you waste money (and labor). Likewise, you may find that the expensive part can go in a more-durable machine, and that said machine often replaces 6-cent parts with 35-cent parts, and so costs 4-5 times as much.

          You can take this out farther. You can build a machine that lasts thrice as l

      • Re:No problem! (Score:5, Interesting)

        by ElizabethGreene ( 1185405 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @12:35PM (#54748495)

        The battery on $20,000 a car lasts, at best, about five years. It costs $150 to get a new one.

        If auto manufacturers made the batteries non-removable people wouldn't buy cars.

        The battery on a $800 phone lasts, at best, about 3 years. It costs $10 for a new battery.

        Why is it okay to hand-wave away the phone manufacturer's choice to glue these units closed?

        I'm putting my money where my mouth is here. I won't buy a phone that doesn't have a MicroSd slot and user-replaceable battery.

        • Because gluing the halves together helps the whole thing going bad when it slips out a pocket into a puddle of water or when I get caught in a downpour?

        • The battery on $20,000 a car lasts, at best, about five years. It costs $150 to get a new one.

          If auto manufacturers made the batteries non-removable people wouldn't buy cars.

          The battery on a $800 phone lasts, at best, about 3 years. It costs $10 for a new battery.

          Why is it okay to hand-wave away the phone manufacturer's choice to glue these units closed?

          Because automobiles are a mature market with only minor changes over time, and someone will probably still be driving that same car 15 or 20 years after it was manufactured. The rate of change in smartphone technology thus far has meant that by the time the battery needs to be replaced the phone itself is looking rather obsolete. Phones with replaceable batteries used to be ubiquitous, but people rarely bought new batteries for old phones. Doing away with the extra size and weight required to support replac

    • Re:No problem! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Hentes ( 2461350 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:21AM (#54747817)

      Except that most of the time manufacturers actually go out of their way to make products less repairable. They don't use weird screws because they're cheaper, but to fuck with costumers. If everybody was using the same set of standardized parts, that would simplify both design and manufacturing, while mass production of said parts would push their cost down. This is exactly a case where regulation can be useful for breaking the prisoner's dilemma scenario and helping everybody. PCs didn't become unaffordably expensive just because they are built out of interchangeable parts, quite the opposite.

      • by JudgeFurious ( 455868 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:30AM (#54747899)
        Every time I change my costume there's always some weird screw I don't have the right tool to loosen getting in my way.
      • Of all the tall tales, I think my favorite is the one about Eli Whitney and the interchangeable parts.

        • It was Samuel Colt [wikipedia.org]

          Colt's great contribution was to the use of interchangeable parts. Knowing that some gun parts were made by machine, he envisioned that all the parts on every Colt gun to be interchangeable and made by machine, later to be assembled by hand. His goal was the assembly line. This is shown in an 1836 letter that Colt wrote to his father in which he said,

          The first workman would receive two or three of the most important parts and would affix these and pass them on to the next who would add a part and pass the growing article on to another who would do the same, and so on until the complete arm is put together.

          • It was Samuel Colt [wikipedia.org]

            Colt's great contribution was to the use of interchangeable parts. Knowing that some gun parts were made by machine, he envisioned that all the parts on every Colt gun to be interchangeable and made by machine, later to be assembled by hand. His goal was the assembly line. This is shown in an 1836 letter that Colt wrote to his father in which he said,

            The first workman would receive two or three of the most important parts and would affix these and pass them on to the next who would add a part and pass the growing article on to another who would do the same, and so on until the complete arm is put together.

            Henry Ford had a similar idea...

            • Considering that Sam Colt died a year and a half before Henry Ford was born, i think we can safely assume that Ford probably borrowed his idea from Colt.

      • Except that most of the time manufacturers actually go out of their way to make products less repairable. They don't use weird screws because they're cheaper, but to fuck with costumers. If everybody was using the same set of standardized parts, that would simplify both design and manufacturing, while mass production of said parts would push their cost down. This is exactly a case where regulation can be useful for breaking the prisoner's dilemma scenario and helping everybody. PCs didn't become unaffordably expensive just because they are built out of interchangeable parts, quite the opposite.

        Um, MOST of the time, those "weird screws" are there to facilitate automated manufacturing. Ya know, one of the things that makes things CHEAP to buy, so you can have nice things.

        And in some things, like cellphones, "standardized parts" are simply NOT a "thing"; not because the manufacturers want to spend BILLIONS in developing custom SoCs; but because there simply aren't any "Standardized Parts" that do what CONSUMERS want to have in their phones.

        • Re:No problem! (Score:5, Insightful)

          by sjames ( 1099 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @12:51PM (#54748641) Homepage Journal

          Sorry, wrong. Machines placing screws is a long ago solved problem. The last funny screw that was in any way mechanically better was the torx. The funky pentalobe and anti-tamper torx, etc are just the manufacturer being an asshole.

        • by kyrsjo ( 2420192 )

          As the AC below me also says, Apple etc. isn't using weird screws and refuse to sell the screwdriver (or manuals, or other repair parts) just because avoiding standard screws like TORX makes their manufacturing line more efficient...

    • We are paying 2x-3x the cost.

      We used to pay good money for an American made product that would last several years. Then cheap Chinese/Asian products came on the market. They were cheap, often a 1/3 of the cost. Now you can't find those American made products. And instead, the cheap Chinese/Asian products such as dishwashers and washing machines are now more than the old American ones were. But the failure rates are thru the roof, the warranties are almost non-existent. It is so bad, every store offers yo

      • by GNious ( 953874 )

        Just a reminder that if you're getting shite quality from Chinese manufaturers or ODMs, it's because that's what they've been told to make - they have no issues making quality products, and no qualms about making crap when requested.

      • Here's the thing: the Chinese factory making a good exactly to spec of an American product would cost less. The American factory making shitty Chinese goods would cost 5x more.

        We didn't move from America to China; we moved to lower-durability goods at lower prices. The Chinese are some of the most-skillful, most-dependable manufacturers in the world, if not the best. American manufacturers generally produce overpriced goods at low quality; some try to deal with this by overbuilding, so you get a boat a

    • As long as people are willing to pay 2-3x the current cost, they can have a TV with replaceable parts and the infrastructure required to support it. Of course, many people won't be able to buy these products, but boy howdy, if they do, it will really be great.

      Exactly!

    • by sjames ( 1099 )

      Absolute 100% pure bull shit. It does NOT triple the cost of a device to make the most common causes of failure repairable. As for infrastructure, you mean a website for ordering parts from the same source the manufacturer uses (or just sell through Amazon)?

      I guess when the manufacturers offered the cool aid, you went back for thirds.

    • Rather than speculating, you might want to look at what happened with a similar regulation on white goods. For the most part, these are made from components supplied by third parties and so the immediate knock-on effect was that dishwasher makers demanded long-term support for components from their suppliers. The suppliers turned around and said 'sure, but for a limited range'. This meant that almost all models of dishwasher are now built using a few standard components (including the electronics), which
    • Re:No problem! (Score:4, Informative)

      by Moof123 ( 1292134 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @02:11PM (#54749393)

      Not really 2-3x. The battery example cited is an easy one. A soldered/glued in battery is NOT 1/2 the cost of one that can be unscrewed or unsnapped. The trade off is a small increase in the thickness of the phone, or a small reduction in operating time if the form factor is kept constant.

      In a lot of ways we have a race to the bottom, where initial impressions matter a lot, so making a slimmer phone wins compared to a longer lifespan phone that is slightly thicker, or has a larger bezel, so all manufacturers ditch the removable battery or go out of business. Some companies go to bigger extremes, making the phones intentionally irreparable with funky screws (Apple), key locked fingerprint sensors (Apple), and fully glued together stuff (latest MS Surface).

      I would also add a mandate for required security updates for web enabled products until less than 10% of the shipped product is still operating in the field, and the same for keeping alive any servers needed to keep major functionality going. We have become awash in orphaned products that are still perfectly hardware functional but often lose support before they even finish shipping their last units.

  • My first-gen iPod Touch should have lasted ten years before the battery died. It only lasted eight years.
    • And let me guess...there's nothing else wrong with it. There is no reason to throw something away just because it needs a new battery.

      • There is no reason to throw something away just because it needs a new battery.

        I still have it. Collecting dust with my HP calculators and Nintendo GBA. Thinking about putting it up on eBay. Maybe someone will want to run Windows on it.

        http://www.instructables.com/id/Getting-Windows-31-and-95-on-an-ipod-touch/ [instructables.com]

        • What I'd really like to do is trade in my iPod touch for an iPod Classic with flash storage. The touch OS got upgraded too many times and slowed down - the classic still runs lean and has a more efficient UI if the only reason you want to use it is for music.

          • The touch OS got upgraded too many times and slowed down [...]

            My iPad 2 has the same problem. I only need it to run the alarm clock app with the air raid siren to wake me up at 4:30AM. For that I leave it plugged in, so battery life isn't an issue.

          • What I'd really like to do is trade in my iPod touch for an iPod Classic with flash storage. The touch OS got upgraded too many times and slowed down - the classic still runs lean and has a more efficient UI if the only reason you want to use it is for music.

            There are conversion kits and services on eBay to convert iPod Classics to flash.

      • Apple charges $79 to replace the battery on the 7/7s in the US. third-party shops charge up to $130 to replace an HTC 10 battery. The difference is in construction.

        Thin phones pretty much demand either very clever construction or irreparable construction. HTC, LG, and Samsung have gone for irreparable.

        Legislating changes to this is why we can't have nice things. Trying to tell manufacturers how to make their products risks giving us products we actually don't desire. Right now this seems like Apple has suc

    • My first-gen iPod Touch should have lasted ten years before the battery died. It only lasted eight years.

      So, get the battery replaced and stop whining.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:08AM (#54747683)

    Being a US Citizen, I feel I am being dragged into some backwards Theocratic Police State where the common person has no rights, has no say and is there to serve solely as a profit center for the All Mighty Capitalists

    In the EU, they proactively look after the interests of their people and society
    Sure, they pay higher taxes and they ave plenty of downsides, but I find that far more acceptable than living in the US

    • by drGreg ( 153424 )

      Immigrate.

    • You're right, we ARE, and we have to fight against it as hard as we possibly can; I don't want to live in a real-life Handmaid's Tale.
    • they proactively look after the interests of their people and society

      Who is "they" and why can't i look after my own (Self) Interests? Oh right, self important elitists know what is best for me, having never met me. Got it.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by epyT-R ( 613989 )

      So get out. Your Radiant Socialist Future awaits, comrade.

    • So, I assume you're happy to accept the unintended consequences of such well-intentioned regulation? Like, larger and less attractive phones because you're forcing manufacturers to make them user-repairable? A slower / less frequent update of hardware features you like, because designers are limited to making things that last for 10 years?

      Europeans seem to want all the good things about innovation / fast changes, without any of the possible downsides (which often they don't even realize what they're
  • Easy Solution (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bjdevil66 ( 583941 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:15AM (#54747747)

    Hit the manufacturers with a "life cycle tax" to cover the true cost of the ENTIRE life cycle of the product - including disposal in a landfill or the ocean.

    Pros: You'd be able to repair a lot of stuff because it'd be cheaper to sell. And the Great Pacific Garbage Patch(es) would stop growing pretty quick. McDonald's Happy Meal toys would either be made of wood or disappear altogether.

    Cons: Implementing it would be difficult - full of more regulations to comply with. And stuff would go way up in price. McDonald's Happy Meal toys would either be made of wood or disappear altogether.

    • This really is a very effective tool. As AmiMoJo also points out far above, There is no incentive to manufactures to not have planned obsolescence as they do not pay the disposal cost (externalized as AmiMoJo says). Manufacturers make money when they sell the product and their only cost is is making the product. In most places, currently, the customer (and the government and the environment) pays the disposal cost. A few US states have cost tacked onto some electronics products to pay disposal costs. U
  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:17AM (#54747781)

    77 per cent of EU consumers would rather repair their goods than buy new ones

    And what percentage would be willing to pay significantly more for those repairable products than they are paying now for the non-repairable versions?

    • by olau ( 314197 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:39AM (#54747985) Homepage

      How do you know that repairability is so much more expensive? For the products I've repaired, small design changes would make it much easier to do common repairs.

      It might also make them easier and faster to assemble in the first place. Some of the designs I've seen feel like the designer never actually worked with the thing.

      • How do you know that repairability is so much more expensive?

        Because companies are still going to plan on making money at the same rate.
        If something lasts longer, they'll charge more for it.

      • It might also make them easier and faster to assemble in the first place.

        Or it could make them much more slower and expensive.

        I'm reminded of when Wozniak developed Breakout. The original circuit design was going to use somewhere over 150 chips. Woz was able to get it down to 44 for the final design, but the version that shipped used over 100 because Atari found Woz's too difficult to manufacture.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

      • by sjames ( 1099 )

        In some cases, it is clear that the manufacturer spent many tens of thousands of dollars on making the product less repairable.

        • by green1 ( 322787 )

          Most corporations seem to spend more time and money fighting repairability than they spend improving their product.

    • 77 per cent of EU consumers would rather repair their goods than buy new ones

      And what percentage would be willing to pay significantly more for those repairable products than they are paying now for the non-repairable versions?

      1/77%

  • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:19AM (#54747793)

    The study in question was in relation to major household waste management. 77% of respondents said they would "make an effort to get broken appliances repaired before buying new ones." {Emphasis Mine} It was a study about the home, food waste, plastic waste, and general appliances. I too would put every effort into getting a dishwasher repaired. I just drove my coffee machine to the other side of the city for that reason too.

    However I couldn't give two shits about my smartphone, tablet, or any other device with glued in batteries, or batteries in general. Most of these status symbols will be replaced while in a perfectly working condition. I applaud the idea behind the repairability rules, but if you don't back it with the right study you will not find the support you need to tackle this issue, an issue which manufacturers will fight.

    • The study in question was in relation to major household waste management. 77% of respondents said they would "make an effort to get broken appliances repaired before buying new ones." {Emphasis Mine} It was a study about the home, food waste, plastic waste, and general appliances. I too would put every effort into getting a dishwasher repaired. I just drove my coffee machine to the other side of the city for that reason too.

      However I couldn't give two shits about my smartphone, tablet, or any other device with glued in batteries, or batteries in general. Most of these status symbols will be replaced while in a perfectly working condition. I applaud the idea behind the repairability rules, but if you don't back it with the right study you will not find the support you need to tackle this issue, an issue which manufacturers will fight.

      Mod this Up!

  • They always claim "it would be nice" to be able to upgrade an existing device than to have to buy a new one, but in practice no one does that. It's been that way in the PC world for years. Maybe you upgrade the RAM or hard drive, but that's usually it. You go through the cost of the upgrade, and in the end you still have the same dinged and dirty old thing you had before. People much prefer the experience of going out and buying a shiny new thing.
    • by epyT-R ( 613989 )

      My personal systems are perpetually upgraded. A cpu/systemboard/ram combo lasts about 5 years, gpus every 2-3, storage as needed. At the end, they enter hand-me-down states and go into secondary machines or are sold/given away. If I had to rebuy the whole machine every time, it would cost me a lot more because I'd have to buy hardware I don't really need to replace yet. I would also end up with sub optimal configurations typically offered by OEMs trying to hit price points.

    • I have been running the same PC box for 13 years. In this time, I have upgraded/replaced:

      • monitor: twice
      • video card: 2 or 3 times
      • HDD/SSD: 3 or 4 times
      • CPU: once (core quad Q6600 to cheap used core 2 QX9770)
      • RAM: 2 or 3 times
      • added small things like WiFi, webcam, etc as needed

      I could easily afford each incremental upgrade or replacement, solving any specific bottlenecks I encountered.

      I will probably buy a laptop (because they've gotten fast enough) when the motherboard breaks down, or some groundbreaki

  • by nightfire-unique ( 253895 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:22AM (#54747825)

    We have to make sure that batteries are no longer glued into a product, but are screwed in so that we do not have to throw away a phone when the battery breaks down.

    Excuse me ... ... something in my eye.

    Seriously my fingers are sore from typing almost this exact sentence over and over again. It's good to see someone of influence actually cares.

    • Excluding newer Apple machines, laptop batteries are not glued in place. They are in a module that SNAPS into place, and is generally user-replaceable. Cell phone batteries are either user-removable, or held in place with 3M double sided tape. Either way, I have never seen a laptop or cell phone whose battery is "SCREWED" into place. That just sounds like a bad engineering idea. I'm ok with cellphone batteries being held in place with the tape, but don't overdo it with gobs of glue.
  • by Rick Schumann ( 4662797 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:28AM (#54747877) Journal
    Being someone who spent a number of years repairing Other People's Broken Shit (and profited intellectually thereby, believe it or not; knowing how things break and how they could be made better is of great practical use), I appreciate and agree with the sentiment behind this from the EU, but as with so many things technological, the politicians in this case don't have an appreciation for the technical problems associated with it. Many of the devices they'd like to be repairable aren't manufactured in a way that makes them easily repairable in the first place. Much surface-mount component technology itself makes it almost impossible to diagnose problems down to the component level (BGA packaged integrated circuits especially). Then there's the cost associated with diagnosis and repair of a circuit board; in many cases it might cost more to do that than a new unit would cost. Changing the way things are manufactured to facilitate repair might not be possible, at least without going backwards, having devices that are larger and bulkier, so that repairs can even be made. As-is, some devices can be 'repaired' just by replacing an entire circuit board, which while it irks my sensibilities is the most cost-effective solution; defectives can either be recycled or repaired in bulk in a factory setting for much cheaper than as a one-off. Your smartphone, on the other hand, is more-or-less one circuit board to start with, is very densely packed with components, most/all of the VLSI ICs are BGA packages, and the PCB itself might not even survive the removal/replacement process, even if you can manage to diagnose the problem; there's no real way to make them repairable short of replacing entire assemblies, which in many cases might cost more than half of what a new smartphone costs. Many other portable devices are in the same boat. Appliances, vehicles, $LARGE_THINGS? There's little reason why they can't be made repairable, it's just company policies that prevent it (I'm looking at you John Deere). I'd hope that the EU is really going to target that class of 'device' than any other.
    • by CanadianMacFan ( 1900244 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @12:45PM (#54748581)

      If I break the screen on my iPhone given how it's built it's easier and less expensive(?) to go out and buy a new iPhone. If the battery stops holding the charge I need to get a new iPhone because the current one is glued in. The point is that the phones and other items like it should be manufactured so that if something goes wrong to a component like one of those then it should be easy to take the phone in to be repaired. It would be nice to be able to upgrade your storage after purchasing a phone but they aren't even calling for that.

      If there was something wrong with anything on the motherboard then you would just take out the board and replace it with an new one. Even that is a lot better than replacing the whole phone. But it's hard to do when manufacturers use special screws and slather glue everywhere.

      • I've been involved in manufacturing things. They're 'slathering glue everywhere' because everyone wants smaller/thinner/lighter and they don't want to hear excuses as to why not. They also want cheap, cheap, cheap, and adding actual fasteners to hold things together not only costs more money per unit on the Bill Of Materials but it costs more for assembly per unit too, so they glue things together to make it cheaper, lighter, smaller, and thinner. Then everyone buys that they make a big profit and their dec
  • Have any economists studied the planned obsolescence economy and production cycles based on intentional forced turnover?

    It strikes me as the (probably wrong) layman that a lot of companies seem to have business models that are predicated on planned obsolescence generating demand for replacement products.

    Obviously there's a whole category of computer-related products where improvements make the product obsolete no matter how much the design suggests upgradability -- even though your Socket 7 motherboard has

    • I'm sure I will be denounced, but this does seem like an area where imposing some kind of regulation would have good environmental consequences (reducing the waste stream) and consumer benefit even if it results in marginal price premiums.

      Your argument is really no different from the general central planning vs free market argument. In theory, regulated (or centrally planned) markets always do better than free markets. In practice, they never do, because regulators lack the information to decide on the righ

  • by olau ( 314197 )

    There's a fine balance to be walked here, but frankly lots of companies haven't walked even near that line for years.

    They've honed a culture of making it impossible to fix anything, when the truth is that minimal changes would make it easy to fix most common problems for - not all, but many people and their friends.

    The sudden appearance of a ton of small iPhone and related repair shops prove there's market for this.

    I predict a lot of naysayers are going to turn up in this thread, and yes, it's a balance. Bu

  • Seriously, new appliance reliability has gotten so bad, that I'd say probably 20% of purchases fail or have problems in the first 18 months. And even when under warranty, the customer must fight and fight to have the problem resolved.

    I think the simple solution is mandate the warranty be based upon price increment.

    Minimum Warranty Period
      $100 = 90 days
    $100- $200 = 1 year
    $200-$500 = 2 year
    $500-$1,000 = 3 year
    $1,000+ = 5 year

    • My original Apple //e computer cost $1600 in 1984 (excluding perhipherals), and only had a 90 day warranty. It still works today. Those days are gone.
    • by hackel ( 10452 )

      That makes no sense. It doesn't take into consideration materials cost. Something could be expertly designed and still only cost $1 and last 10 years, while something could be obscenely expensive and require regular maintenance after a month. There's just no point in trying to generalise things like this.

  • by ooloorie ( 4394035 ) on Wednesday July 05, 2017 @11:46AM (#54748053)

    Evert iPhone should come with a free pony! The EU demands it!

  • They will propose any stupid shit that comes into their head, if it sounds like it is pro-consumer/anti-corporate.

    For example:

    "Batteries must be SCREWED in"?!?

    Screwed into WHAT?!?

    So now, the battery has to have some sort of threaded-insert, decreasing space inside the battery for, uh, BATTERY, and making it so that nice IP67 rating is RIGHT OUT, because now we have to have a HOLE in the body for the screw to pass through?!?

    And don't whine about o-rings or other nonsense. Those quickly lose their effectivene

    • I don't think they meant that the battery should be designed like a light bulb, but rather that the battery should be secured in place using screws instead of glue.
  • I have hemmed and hawed about how closed off and unrepairable/un-upgradable the smart devices are these days. When my PC's hard drive breaks, i just buy a new one and place it in there. Can't play the latest video game? Looks like I just need to upgrade the graphics card. System getting slower and unresponsive every day? Time to re-install the OS and start with a fresh clean slate! I can't do ANY of these with my old smart devices. I have an old samsung phone i would love to install a fresh image on, becaus
  • Now that they have solved the issues of crime and poverty, it's good to see them move on to something important.

  • This crap has been going on for a long time, and it is high time that governments start standing up for their citizens over the lobbyists. From cars that cant be repaired because every part is electronically tagged for the sole purpose of blocking non-OEM parts to smart phones with un-replaceable batteries or software updates that brick your personal property for using a non-OEM vendor to repair your screen or battery. Businesses have been going out of their way to screw over the consumer, repair business

  • Stamped on the back is it's birth date: July 2, 1992. Built like a battleship and still going strong.

    My assumption is that most peoples stance on repairabllity is closely aligned to where they live on the new/novel vs old/familiar spectrum. If you enjoy new things than you don't worry as much about repairing what you have as those who have found something they like and want to keep it.

    Nothing wrong with either position so don't feel obligated to convert everybody to your point of view.

    The point the EU is
  • This is why social democracy cannot work as a long-term economic solution. As long as a free market remains, this kind of thing will never be more than a mere "suggestion" to manufacturers. Sure, they can try to incentivise it with tax breaks and other means, but ultimately, corporations are going to do what earns them the most money. Planned obsolescence is pretty much the entire business model of the mobile industry these days. I would love to see a change to this, but it's simply not possible until w

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