Apple’s T2 Chip Locks Down Independent Repairs on new iMac Pro and MacBook Pro Systems

Apple's T2 Chip Locks Down Independant Repairs on new iMac Pro and MacBook Pro Systems

Apple’s T2 Chip Locks Down Repairs on new iMac Pro and MacBook Pro Systems

Apple has never been known for the repairability of their product, especially in their modern iterations, often using proprietary parts and casings that are not designed to be disassembled by end users. 

A report from Motherboard has uncovered that Apple has taken steps that maintain their unfriendly stance towards at-home or 3rd party repairs, with the T2 security chips included in the company’s latest iMac Pro and MacBook Pro rendering systems “inoperable” when repairs are made outside of Apple’s “Authorised Service Providers”. Repaired systems will be rendered will not function until Apple’s “system configuration” software is run, locking down repairs to Apple certifies outlets. 

On the iMac Pro, the T2 chip will kick in if the device’s logic board or flash storage are replaced, though owners of 2018 MacBook Pro systems will see their systems become “inoperable” if the display assembly, logic board, top case (keyboard, touchpad and housing) or Touch ID board are replaced. These systems can become functional again if they are taken to an Apple Authorised Service Provider, who can run a repair/diagnostics program called Apple Service Toolkit 2. 

Apple's T2 Chip Locks Down Independant Repairs on new iMac Pro and MacBook Pro Systems  

Apple has gone to great lengths to ensure that device repairs are conducted exclusively by Apple and their list of certified service providers, a move which ensures a certain level of quality for repairs but ultimately acts to the detriment of end-users. Not everyone has easy access to an Apple Store or an Authorised Service Provider, making Mac repairs problematic for anyone living in a small town or is otherwise far away from certified Apple repair teams. 

This design decision also locks out user upgrade options, with Motherboard listing the iMac Pro’s flash storage as an area that can trigger the device’s ‘kill switch’. This is not a consumer-friendly design decision. 

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