Finnish mobile manufacturer HMD Global has developed a smartphone that users can repair themselves, the Nokia G22. The device includes a 6.5-inch screen and a 50-megapixel main camera, but it’s the phone’s outer shell and internal workings that set it apart. A recyclable plastic back cover can be easily removed to swap out broken components. With tools and repair guides from hardware repair advocacy group iFixit, users can replace the phone’s back cover, battery, screen and charging port. The process costs on average 30% less than replacing an old phone with a new one.
The Nokia G22 has been developed in response to the growing movement for the “right to repair”. which calls for making it easier for consumers to fix their gadgets. The European Commission’s Green New Deal aims to create a circular economy by 2050, making it possible to repurpose, repair, reuse, or recycle almost all physical goods. Lawmakers in the European Parliament are pushing for legislation that would force manufacturers to give consumers the right to repair.
“As consumers increasingly demand more sustainable and longer-lasting devices, the ability to repair smartphones easily and affordably will become a key differentiator in the market”, said Ben Wood, lead analyst at CCS Insight. Research by CCS Insight indicates that around half of mobile phone owners in Europe would repair their device if it broke outside of the warranty period.
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Apple launched a self-service repair program in November 2021, allowing customers to buy parts to fix their own devices. In December, the program was expanded to eight European countries. The Nokia G22 is part of an effort by smartphone makers to promote sustainability and longevity in their products.
However, the Nokia G22 has a drawback: it only meets the IP52 benchmark on resistance against damaging substances, meaning it is not immune to water damage. Adam Ferguson, head of product marketing at HMD Global, said that the device’s repairability would cost on average 30% less than replacing an old phone with a new one. “We want to give users the confidence to keep their phone longer and, importantly, reduce waste” , he said.