Fixing Your Cracked iPhone Screen Is Getting Easier — and Cheaper

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Angry man with cell phone
Rokas Tenys /

If you’ve ever broken the screen on your iPhone, you know that it can be time-consuming and expensive to get it repaired. But that’s about to change.

By the end of 2017, Apple plans to put a Horizon Machine — its proprietary screen-fixing machine — in hundreds of authorized third-party locations around the globe, including at the stores of electronics retailer Best Buy, Reuters reports.

The move comes after eight states launched “right to repair” bills targeting Apple and other high-tech manufacturers’ proprietary and restrictive repair networks. Reuters reports that fixing cracked screens is a multi-billion-dollar global business.”

Apple says the legislation didn’t factor into its decision to put its proprietary screen repair machines in third-party locations. Instead, the tech giant says it was spurred into action by lengthy wait times for screen repairs at some of its Apple stores.

“We’ve been on a quest to expand our reach,” Brian Naumann, senior director of service operations at Apple, tells Reuters.

Apple currently allows its customers to get their iPhones fixed — without voiding their warranty — at a nonauthorized repair shop as long as the fix causes no damage to the device. However, the Horizon Machines are specifically designed to fix more serious damage.

For example, only the Horizon Machine can install a replacement fingerprint sensor on the device — a feature that’s vital to some of the iPhone’s most basic functions, like unlocking the phone.

Have you ever had to replace an iPhone screen? Share your experiences below or on Facebook.

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