Apple is not a fan of unauthorized or third-party repairs. While legislation on the right to repair still hangs in limbo, the company is doing every bit it can to at least discourage untrained hands from taking a whack at it. Sometimes it comes via some arbitrary software certification, other times it is based on how difficult it is to open up a device. The new HomePod mini clearly falls in the latter category, making it nearly impossible to even replace the power cable.
To be fair, the larger HomePod’s power cable wasn’t replaceable either. It could be removed by pulling hard on it but, once out, it isn’t easily replaceable, at least not by the user. Getting it replaced requires pro servicing or at least some experience.
An early teardown of the HomePod mini, however, reveals that its power cord is neither user-replaceable nor even user-removable. MacRumors user ouimetnick warns owners not to even try as it would damage the device completely.
That isn’t the only thing that has changed either. Compared to the original HomePod, you’re not supposed to remove the top plastic touch surface and you have to start by getting into the mesh first from the bottom. Long story short, it’s still a sordid mess trying to repair the HomePod, mini or otherwise.
It’s pretty much on par with Apple’s practice but, hopefully, the HomePod mini will experience less wear and tear compared to, say, an iPhone. We’ll still have to wait for iFixit’s more complete teardown to see any other surprises awaiting those who dare but, suffice it to say, it won’t be a walk in the park even for these experts.