When iFixit tore down the iPhone 12, the serial disassemblers rated the Apple device a respectable 6/10 in repairability. They also noted the extremely similar camera modules between the base device and the Pro model, number of sensors notwithstanding. But as it turns out, should anything happen to the cameras, they can be a pain to replace.
The folks at iFixit have since published a new report saying that the cameras of the newest iPhone are unreliable when moving the cameras from one iPhone 12 to another. For one, it refuses to switch to the wide-angle camera, and only responds to certain modes. Sometimes it even freezes up.
This could either be a defect of the iPhone 12, or an intentional move by apple. And chances are it’s the latter. iFixit cites Apple’s internal training guides as saying technicians will need the company’s proprietary, cloud-linked System Configuration app to fully repair screens and cameras of the latest iPhone, its variants, and any newer models.
All this does run quite counter to the otherwise respectable repairability score of the iPhone 12. The phone’s innards are held together by more screws than glue this time around. But despite the easier repairability, Apple may want this to be done by the people it authorises, rather than just anyone in the phone repair business.