Apple buys iFixit


Philip Elmer-DeWitt is a senior editor at Fortune.



iFixit's new website.

UPDATE: April Fools.

FORTUNE --The gadget-repair company iFixit, a persistent critic of Apple (aapl) products for their low "repairability," announced Tuesday that it has been purchased by Apple for an undisclosed price.

iFixit is best known for its "teardown" photos of disassembled iPhones and iPads, posted shortly after they go on sale and later used to illustrate free online repair guides (parts and tools for sale).

iFixit founder Kyle Wiens has often complained that Apple's devices, because they are so thin and tightly packed, are particularly hard to repair and reuse.

According to the notice that replaced iFixit's website overnight Tuesday, Apple has promised to do something about that.

"As part of the deal," it reads, "Apple made a commitment to produce the most replaceable electronic devices and personal computers on the market. This is a clear win for the whole iFixit community.

"Apple is working hard to make devices last long enough to be upgraded or irrelevant, making repairability an antiquated notion. iFixit will become a key player in the future of Apple device development, starting with the new Smartphone Replaceability Index."

[The "index" is rigged to give Apple devices top scores in all categories.]

For more on the iFixit community, see iFixit.org, "Ditch the throwaway economy," it urges. "Join the repair revolution."

LINK: Why fixers will repair the planet, Wiens' 2011 article in The Atlantic.

 

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