Samsung says it will let you fix your own Galaxy phone

Does your Galaxy have? Does the phone have a galaxy of cracks running all over the screen?

If so, this is your moment. Samsung has announced that they will be giving you an official chance to hack (some) your own devices soon.

Samsung say it will provide consumers with access to equipment parts, repair tools and repair instructions. The specifics of the repair terms are still a bit limited: The company says it will penalize users who only repair the screen, back glass, and charging port. Battery and other internal messages are still limited. The only products supported in this repair effort are the Galaxy S20 and S21 series and the Galaxy Tab 7+. All of those have been released in the past few years and the list is notable for exclusions Galaxy phones and tablets this year. Samsung said it will provide parts and service for other devices in the future, but hasn’t given any specific date.

The company’s new repair program is implemented in partnership with the right to repair group i fix it. It will start this summer.

The move comes as part of a cooling off battle between repair advocates and companies that want to keep control of their products. Last November, Apple said it would work to create resource repair available to customers. Just last week, the John Deere tractor company announced a similar, if more restrictive, plan. Some of these efforts have been lacking, and the statements of each company leave out some specifics. (Samsung itself ruined a previous partnership with iFixit.) However, the driving force behind the movement is still there.

“That’s another sign that right to repair Nathan Proctor, head of the rights-correction campaign for the US Public Interest Research Group, said. “I think that’s more of an indication of where we are — clearly building momentum and forcing companies to stay ahead of upcoming regulations — more than anything else. I doubt that Samsung will be the last company to announce something like this. All can see the writing on the wall.”

Check out what else has been new and shiny this week.

Windows and Android play well

Gone are the days of sitting in front of a computer and having to take your hand off the table to get your phone off the table to read a text message. Microsoft has updated and renamed the Your Phone app that links the mobile and desktop operating systems. Calling Phone link on Windows 11 desktop, the updates are an attempt to fix sync issues between Windows PCs and Android phones.

New design and usability tweaks make it easy to access and sift through your phone’s content using your PC. Using the desktop app, you can send and receive text messages and phone calls, and access your photo library and some native Android apps. The corresponding Android app has also been renamed to Link to Windows. Hopefully this trend toward blindingly obvious app names continues. Rename Uber Eats to Burrito Bringer. Change Facebook to Uncle’s Rants.

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