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Google updates Pixel repair policy, may or may not fix a device with unauthorized parts

1 month ago 52

After being called out for a controversial repair policy recently, Google has updated its policy around Pixel devices sent in with unauthorized parts.

In the repair policy for Google Pixel devices, it was originally stated that Google would not repair a device sent in with unauthorized parts and, in fact, it wouldn’t return that device to the owner either. The policy had been in place since mid-2023, but Google quickly said it would change it after it came to attention.

As of today, Google has officially updated its policy for Pixel repair. The new policy states:

Unauthorized Parts: If You send a Device containing non-Google-authorized parts for repair, in certain situations (e.g., safety), Service Provider may not be able to repair Your Device. Service Provider will return Your Device except when health or safety requirements prevent us from doing so. If Service Provider can’t return Your Device, Google will work with You on next steps.

As a reminder, the policy previously said:

Unauthorized Parts: You will not send in a Device containing non-Google-authorized parts – if You do, Your Device will not be returned to you.

This change, which was made in the past few hours as it wasn’t there when we checked earlier today (H/T Android Authority), doesn’t really give a concrete answer on what Google will do with a device sent in with unofficial parts.

On the one hand, it’s entirely possible that the company will indeed repair a device sent in with unauthorized parts. But the policy also makes it possible for Google to just return the device to you if it decides the repair can’t be done, such as if it is unsafe. And, if the device is so unsafe that it cannot be returned, Google will “work” with the device owner on the “next steps,” whatever those might be.

While this is rather open-ended on Google’s part, it at least paints a better picture of what happens if you send in a device with some “unauthorized” part. Either you’ll get it back fixed, get it back broken, or Google will do something if you can’t get the device back at all.

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