Oregon’s groundbreaking right-to-repair bill now becomes law

Oregon Governor Tina Kotek yesterday signed the state’s Right to Repair Act, which will push manufacturers to offer more repair options for their products than any other state to date.

The law, like those passed in New York, California and Minnesota, would require many manufacturers to provide individuals and repair shops with the same parts, tools and documentation they provide to their own repair teams.

But Oregon’s bill goes a step further, preventing companies from implementing programs that require parts to be verified through cryptographic software checks before they can function, known as parts pairing or serialization. Oregon’s SB 1596 is the first bill in the nation to target this practice. Oregon Sen. Jeanne Solman and Rep. Courtney Nealon, both Democrats, sponsored and pushed the bill in the state Senate and Legislature.

“Right-to-repair will make it easier for Oregonians to keep their personal electronics running by removing manufacturer restrictions,” Charlie Fisher, director of the Oregon chapter of the Public Interest Research Group, said in a statement. “This will protect precious natural resources and prevent waste. It’s a refreshing alternative to ‘throwaway’ systems that treat everything as disposable.”

Oregon’s laws are not stronger in every way. First, there is no limit on how many years a manufacturer can provide maintenance support for a device. Part pairing is only prohibited on devices sold in 2025 and later. Certain types of electronics and devices are also exempt, including video game consoles, medical equipment, HVAC systems, motor vehicles, and, like other states, “electric toothbrushes.”

Apple opposes Oregon parts matching ban repair bill. John Perry, Apple’s senior manager of security design, testified at a February hearing in Oregon that pairing restrictions would “undermine Oregon by forcing device manufacturers to allow parts of unknown origin to be used in consumers.” the security and privacy of state residents.” equipment. “

Apple’s support for California’s 2023 Repair Act surprised many observers, although it did so only after urging repair providers to mention when “non-genuine or used” components are used and prohibiting repair providers from disabling security features .

Repair laws passed in four states now cover nearly 70 million people, according to Consumer Reports, which lobbied and testified in support of the Oregon bill.

This story originally appeared in Technology Arts Festival.

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