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What Your Company Needs to Know About Right to Repair

April 1, 2022

If you’re in the business of manufacturing, then right to repair legislation has likely been top of mind for your company for a long time. Right to repair legislation has potential to compromise Original Equipment Manufacturers’ product integrity, profitability, and even proprietary information. Many sectors are impacted by right to repair, including technology, industrial equipment, medical equipment, and consumer lifestyle products. We’re laying out the issues surrounding right to repair that your company should know. At Help Lightning, we provide a solution helping OEMs throughout the world support their customers’ right to repair without compromising the integrity of their products or risking profit loss. 

What is Right to Repair?

When consumers purchase a product, they want to be able to fix it if anything goes wrong rather than have to buy a new product or depend on replacement parts from the OEM. Some companies mandate that consumers must either have repairs performed by the OEM using their parts or via an approved third-party service provider. Failing to abide forfeits the consumer’s warranty. 

Right to repair enables consumers to fix the products they own as needed without penalty. Consumers and independent repair shops favor right to repair, while OEMs are hesitant to back it. Both sides of the argument are valid. Consumers want the right to repair products they own without having to rely on the OEM. OEMs want to ensure the integrity of their products is maintained, and they cannot do that if repair work is being done using third-party parts and services that have not been approved. Additionally, OEMs lose a revenue stream when customers are not required to use their parts and services for repairs. 

Protect Product Integrity 

OEMs’ concern surrounding right to repair is certainly valid. Authorized repair occurs using approved parts and service providers who’ve been trained to repair specific machinery. Using shoddy parts and/or unskilled service providers could reduce the ultimate effectiveness and lifespan of the machinery or equipment. Worse, it could also be a safety hazard. 

AR-enabled visual support is a solution that removes a major barrier to receiving the appropriate service for consumers. Using Help Lightning enables consumers to access experts provided by the OEM, allowing authorized technicians to oversee service and ensure it’s performed correctly. 

The 3D merged reality view generated by Help Lightning provides a virtual interactive presence. OEM technicians get a granular view of the customer’s problem and can guide the onsite technician as if they were side by side in the same room. This includes the ability to reach into the screen to point to components and demonstrate how to fix them, share pictures, make notations right onto the screen, demonstrate using real tools, freeze frames, and much more.  

Remote support is fast and easy to deliver from the OEM side, and the customer does not have to wait to get an authorized repair person onsite. Both sides win. The OEM protects the integrity of their equipment while providing a high touch customer experience. The customer gets the support they need when it’s needed, and also gets the peace of mind knowing they received expert service.

Current Legislation on Right to Repair 

Different countries have different legislation and movements regarding right to repair. In the United States, the right to repair movement is gaining traction and is being reviewed at the state and federal levels. Most recently, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) voted to make right to repair a priority issue, and legislation concerning consumers’ right to repair has been introduced but has not yet passed. 

In Europe, right to repair is motivated by a desire to reduce waste. The European Union approved a directive that components and tools necessary to fix a damaged device must be made available to EU citizens, otherwise those companies cannot do business in the EU.

Support Your Customer’s Right to Repair with Help Lightning

Help Lightning is an AR-enabled merged reality platform that makes remote care feel as if it’s happening in the room. When customers require support to fix a piece of equipment, they can easily initiate a Help Lightning call and get an OEM-approved expert in the room quickly. Problems are resolved faster.

Click here to learn more and schedule a free demo of Help Lightning, and learn how using AR-enabled visual support is used for right to repair.

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