iFixit, which regularly provides readers with hugely helpful teardowns, has praised Apple for making available (deliberately or otherwise) repair manuals for the 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMacs released in 2019. It even upgraded the repairability score for the devices. This is interesting, given it recently emerged that flash storage cannot be removed from the logic board in the latest 27-inch iMac, surely reducing its repairability.
But with publicly available repair manuals, however painful the actual procedures can be, this device offers a greater sense of long-term service potential. It’s a tricky thing, providing this recognition to Apple. The company puts a significant amount of effort into lobbying against Right to Repair bills that would, among other things, make all such internal manuals available to the public. And we know, by way of emails provided to Congress, that the release of the iMac repair manuals was an aberration. Since then, Apple has simultaneously produced its most repair-friendly device in many years, the Mac Pro, and chosen not to release any more manuals for its other devices. Still, this tiny revelation feels like the first signs of spring after a long winter. Apple published service manuals and the world didn’t end.