Tech Upgradeability Not Necessary

iFixit recently took apart the new Retina Display Macbook Pro and found out a lot of it wasn’t easily user-repairable or upgradeable. I know a number of people who would hold this as a major flaw. I’m definitely not one of them. As Doug Pasnak from Cruftbox put it:

To ask that every piece of modern electronics is designed to allow the tiny fraction of hackers to upgrade is the height of hubris, unreasonable, and a huge imposition on everyone else that has no desire to ever crack the case. All that ‘upgradability’ ends up making the product cost more and be more susceptible to failure. Catering to the fringe is not the way to make good products. Making the best product you can for a low price is the way to make good products, even if it means eliminating upgradability and home repair.

If my gadget were misbehaving, I would be the last person to crack it open and tinker, so I’m definitely not part of that “tiny fraction” of hands-on tech-minded people. I don’t care if I never see the inside of a device. I just want a brilliant user experience.

Peter Cohen from The Loop chimed in as well:

Clearly many consumers are happy with the tradeoff, which makes for easier use from a wider swath of people who don’t want to be concerned with the myriad fussy intricacies of computer use. It’s not Apple’s fault that the vast majority of consumers who want iPads don’t give a damn about hacking it. Apple’s simply responding to a market need.

Sometimes what enrages techies off most isn’t that their gadgets are becoming less user-repairable or user-upgradeable, but that most consumers don’t care.


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