The European Parliament votes to support the Right to repair

The European Parliament has voted to support the recommendations of the European Union Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection on the “Right to Repair”, including a mandatory labeling system on consumer electronic products that provides explicit information on the level of repair and the estimated life of the product (iFixit)

The proposal will ask the European Union Commission to “develop and introduce mandatory labels that offer clear, visible and easy-to-understand information to consumers about the estimated duration of the product’s useful life and the level of repair that the product allows in the moment of purchase ”. This will include a repair score that should be displayed prominently at the point of sale. France could be the pioneer if it develops the regulation it has planned for the repair score of mobile phones, laptops and other products from January 2021.

“By endorsing this report, the European Parliament is sending a clear message: creating a universal labeling system that indicates durability and combats premature obsolescence throughout the European Union is the way to go,” says David Cormand, French European MP, belonging to the group of the Greens.

According to a recent survey conducted in the European Union, 77 per cent of EU citizens would prefer to repair their devices rather than having to exchange them for a new one and 79 per cent think that manufacturers should be required by law to facilitate the repair of electronic devices or to allow them to be repaired. can replace individual parts.

“We hope that this will translate into decisive action for the creation of a mandatory repairability rating for all electrical and electronic products sold in the European Union, to help European citizens to buy with confidence,” said Ugo Vallauri , Co-founded by Restart Project and of the European campaign for the right to repair.

Apple has been repeatedly criticized for disproportionate prices for repairs, such as the $ 79 it costs to repair the HomePod mini (which costs $ 99 new) and arbitrary limits on repairs, such as preventing repair. iphone 12 camera repair, by not allowing access to the Apple System Configuration app.

The British Parliament’s Environmental Control Committee has published a report accusing Apple of creating a “culture of waste” based on “short-lived products.”

The European Union proposal is likely to bring to life a whole system of policies aimed at ease of repair and the categorization of the level of repair that each product allows, but it remains to be seen how the European Commission can create a system that links manufacturers and to enforce the mandate of its citizens.

There is a trend that is gaining strength with respect to the useful life of computer products, which is called lengthening, which aims to extend the useful life of devices by repairing and changing the necessary parts.