As with all trends… they come in bursts. After the EU enacted its right to repair law (which we covered just last week), the UK is implementing theirs. How? They’re implementing the EU rules in the UK, as part of their promise to keep regulations in alignment. This is done via a UK law, slated for the summer. Critics do highlight that it’s not strictly a right to repair law. It just requires the spare parts to be available, but not requiring those manufacturers to sell them directly to consumers… or to regulate prices.
Meanwhile, Nevada introduced their bill, AB 221 on right to repair. That marks the 25th state to introduce legislation around right to repair. I’ve included a link from the Campaign for the Right to Repair that highlights the various states progress.
Why do we care?
This is a pretty sizable shift. It follows the usual pattern – it feels like all of a sudden, until you look at the long term work that brought us here. It just happens in a flurry at the end.
The ability to service devices keeps an ecosystem of repair enabled. I’d argue that it’s not too far a step to see software integrators in the same view as those servicing hardware. A bit of a stretch, sure. But not impossible. Historically, a lot of SMB focused service organizations come from this service and repair space. There’s real revenue tied up in the ability to deliver those services that is being protected here.
Finally – we care because if large manufacturers can keep small repair shops out, they own a services relationship that is direct. Do you WANT the big hardware manufacturers to have service technicians with direct relationships like this? If not, you care a lot about right to repair.
Source: Cambridge Networks