June 20, 2024

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Google can keep a phone if you send it in for repair using non-OEM parts (update: policy change)

Google can keep a phone if you send it in for repair using non-OEM parts (update: policy change)

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

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  • Google’s terms and conditions for Pixel repairs state that it will not return a device if it contains non-OEM parts.
  • This will essentially allow Google to “steal” your phone if you send it in for repair using third-party hardware.
  • However, Google has confirmed that it is changing this policy, likely due to public outcry.

Updated June 4, 2024 (03:50 PM ET): Google has responded Robot body Regarding the controversial clause in the Service and Repair Terms and Conditions that allows a company to keep a device sent for repair if that device contains non-OEM parts. Google has assured us that it will do so no It retains phones sent in for repair and is changing the wording of its terms of service agreement to better reflect this.

Here is a statement from a Google spokesperson:

If a customer sends their Pixel device to Google for repair, we won’t keep it regardless of whether it contains non-OEM parts. In some situations, we will not be able to complete the repair if there are safety concerns. In this case, we will send it back to the customer or work with them to determine next steps. Customers are also free to search for repair options that work best for them. We are updating our terms and conditions to make this clear.

This is a positive and customer-friendly move from Google. However, it is worrying that this provision existed in the first place. Regardless, you no longer need to fear that Google will keep your Pixel if you send it in for repair.

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Original article, June 3, 2024 (1:00 p.m. ET): Last week, Samsung found itself embroiled in a controversy of its own when it was discovered that the company was forcing independent repair shops to snitch on customers who had devices installed with non-OEM parts. And now Google has also landed in hot water for similar anti-consumer behavior.

Like many other phone makers, Google has a self-repair program to service a damaged or broken Pixel device. As her Support site There are options to get repair kits, manuals, and certified parts so you can fix your Pixel like new, he explains. Owners can also choose to simply send their device in for professional repair.

Because replacement parts can be expensive, some DIYers choose to use parts from third-party suppliers. But if you go this route, you may want to avoid sending your device to Google if there’s a problem that you don’t have the skills to fix yourself.

Google service and repair excerpt

This rule appears to have been in effect since July 19, 2023, as shown on p. Imagine sending the phone you depend on for repair, and then it’s not returned to you. This discovery isn’t a great look for the Pixel maker and has led to some scathing reactions online.

One Reddit User says: “Google really hates its customers when these customers don’t keep their wallets open and points it to Google’s greedy hands.” Another user says: “This is crazy. They really don’t want us to own anything anymore. They want to control everything we own and dictate our lives.” Meanwhile, a YouTube commenter says:

Imagine a world where if you buy a car and change the clutches because they need to be replaced and then take it to the dealership because of some other unrelated problem, not only will they not make the repair you requested but then the car will be towed and scrapped. That’s why the right to repair is so important, because if you can’t modify or repair your device as you see fit, it doesn’t belong to you.

This behavior isn’t unique to Google either; Samsung and Apple also engage in similar anti-consumer behavior. For example, in the report on Samsung mentioned earlier, it was found that Samsung requires independent repair shops to dismantle a customer’s product if it contains a non-OEM part.

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Overall, this shows that the current state of self-repair does not look great. At this point, these programs seem more for show than anything else. We’ve reached out to Google for comment and will update this article accordingly.

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