With Right to Repair seemingly becoming the law of the land, there’s a growing call for computers that are easily fixed and upgradable. Wouldn’t you want a laptop with modular components you can upgrade or replace to keep your system running for years?
Thankfully, there is an option. As Linus Tech Tips noted, Framework recently started shipping a modular laptop design where most major components are either directly replaceable or relatively easy to repair. You can not only upgrade your memory and storage, but choose your own Wi-Fi module, operating system, and even ports. Need full-size DisplayPort instead of an extra USB-C jack? You can make that change yourself.
While elements like the mainboard aren’t as modular as you might like (mobile CPUs typically aren’t sold separately from boards), the Framework laptop also makes many parts relatively serviceable. You can drop in a replacement mainboard, customize your keys, or swap out the display bezel if you want something more colorful. And importantly, you don’t have to make many compromises — the 13.5-inch machine is about as thick, modern-looking, and speedy as many of its conventional rivals.
There are sacrifices, of course. Framework’s modular laptop isn’t as sleek as established competitors, and it won’t offer any special tricks beyond its upgradeability. There are no dedicated GPUs, exotic cooling options, or other perks that often come with portable PCs. You’ll also have to be patient when systems ship in batches rather than on-demand.
Read more: Should we tolerate hard-to-fix devices?
Even so, the launch raises a good question: would you buy a modular laptop from Framework (or anyone else) with these trade-offs in mind? Or are you more interested in a slick design and clever features that might not be possible in a computer like this? Let us know in the poll below and in the comments.