iPhone & iPad Technician

iPhone & iPad Technician

I Favor the iPad

Boulder, CO

Female, 42

I have been fixing and playing with mobile devices for many years. I have to say my favorites are the most recent Apple creations of the iPhone and the iPad. Though not perfect (who is?), Apple has done a lot of right things with these two products. I.E. Using the same operating system makes it easy for a user to go from an iPhone to an iPad with a very small learning curve. I know these devices well, so ask me any questions!

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Last Answer on January 21, 2016

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Do you think tablets are a fad and will be gone in a few years, like the Blackberry CEO came out and said this week? It IS kind of interesting that every tablet until the iPad flopped horribly...

Asked by Dallas2 almost 4 years ago

Hi Dallas2,

Here is my prediction:  In 6-8 years from now the laptop as we know it will no longer exist.  6-8 years from now the iPad (or a really excellent competitor) will be as powerful and capable as todays laptop, but in the form factor, lightness, and excellent user interface of an iPad.  Here are the clues I see that make me believe this:

1. Apple and others are spending a ton of money on the hardware that goes into these tablets that allow them to have faster and better processors, to be capable of holding more memory, to be lighter and more ergonomic, and other improvements.  This kind of spending usually leads to a product that can do more and be tons more useful for consumer and business use over a few years of time.

2. Current laptop manufactors are trying to make todays laptop a bit more like all these touch screen devices however they can.  Why?  Because, consumer demand is pointing away from todays laptops and running towards iPads, Samsung smart phones, Androids and other touch screen devices that are light weight yet has a better user interface.

3.  Star Trek.  Yup, I am going there.  The advanced technology on Star Trek has inspired thousands of engineers, scientists, developers and others involved in making better products and toys.  That touch pads on The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine, for example, is a shinning example of people in the real world making Star Trek techology come true.  Another example is cell phones.  On the original Star Trek series (back in the 1960's) Captain Kirk was using a communciation device that happens to look a lot like a cell phone.  Coincident?  I think not.  :)

4. The iPad has a good screen size.  A programmer has a lot of room to develop many useful and fun apps, and there are some very excellent apps coming out that take advantage of this screen size.  This will make the iPad more useful for consumers, thus keeping the demand for them coming year after year.

5. There are a lot of good acccessories coming out, such as a keyboard that you can roll up, that make having an iPad more useful for Human touch and efficiency.

6. The technical community does not support a product that plain out sucks.  But, the technical community will support a product that is being done well.  So, does the iPad have the technical community support?  Yes! To see that there are so many software developers developing better and more useful apps for the iPad,  and the hardware manufacturers that are creating useful accessories just for the iPad shows the iPad has this support.

In short, the future of computing is the iPad or something very similiar.  All we have to do is keep buying them today, so the manufacturers can develop the technology to make this all come true.

What's something you think Apple does surprisingly POORLY compared to its competitors?

Asked by dday13 almost 4 years ago

Hi dday13,

I have been thinking about your question for a couple of days now. And there are two things that comes to mind:

(1) The settings application is pretty good, however I do find a couple of things about it surprisingly disorganized. For example, to get to the cellular settings you have to go into general first and then tap on cellular. Personally, I would have made cellular a top menu item.

(2) Battery drain. When you take the iPhone out-of-the-box it has just about everything turned on. When you have lots of things turned on such as all of your notifications, Wi-Fi, cellular and so on at the same time, the battery drains pretty fast.  The two main things I did to drastically improve my battery's life time was turn off most notifications and made sure the Siri setting "raise to speak" was turned off. What surprised me was that Apple shipped their iPhones this way in the first place. 

The above are the two main things I noticed when I first started playing with the iPhone 5 that I thought Apple did poorly.

Do you think Apple intentionally withholds some features from new product releases so that they can add them to a newer version the following year and upsell all the buyers of the first version?

Asked by dan79 almost 4 years ago

Hi Dan,

I suppose that is always possible.  But, I'll give Apple the benefit of the doubt and say there are other, good reasons, why it takes longer then us customers think it should take for a feature to come out.  It could be their developers had limited time to get a long list of features done, thus due to time constraints had to pick which features to do now and which featues they will have time for later.  It could also be that the feature requires hardware that is not ready yet, thus the feature will have to wait. Or it could be what you are asking and with a feature or two Apple waits for the next product release to really encourage customers to get the newest model.  But, in all honestly, since I am not part of that decision making process, I really do not know for sure. However, I am guessing their reasoning is usually ligit. 

How much profit do repair shops make from fixing a cracked iPhone screen? They charge $150+, which makes it almost worth it to buy a new phone. (or maybe that's Apple's strategy: make crappy expensive screens so people have to buy new phones...)

Asked by Rose almost 4 years ago

Hi Rose,

Good question.  We have all been ripped off by the promise of good technology that  turned out to be bad quality.  The iPhone is not one of 'em. Lucky for us (and Apple) there is nothing cheap about the iPhone.  It is truly a good quality product with a ton of research and development behind it.  However, the iPhone is not indestructable, which is why you should buy a case for it incase it gets accidently dropped on a cement floor...or hit with a hammer :)  Either case could cause the screen to crack.  Because simply holding the iPhone in your hand and staring at it does not usually damage the device.

I'll see if I can find you an exact figure of how much a new screen costs.  However, I suspect a fair amount of the cost a repair shop is charging you is labor and probably shipping costs. After all a repair shop is a business that needs to make a profit.

thanks for the question!

Many of the iPhone and iPad protective cases are really expensive. Do you think they're worth the money and provide worthy protection, or would device owners be just fine without them?

Asked by Bruins67 almost 4 years ago

Hi Bruins67,

I completely recommend that every iPhone and iPad owner get a protective case. Why, you ask? Because, accidents happen and these devices are not indestructible. The iPhone and iPad are pretty tough in some ways, yet pretty fragile in other ways. When you pick up these devices and handle them you can squeeze them, tap on them, swipe and press the buttons a million times to your hearts content and the devices handle this constant abuse without any problem. However, if you drop it on cement or other hard flooring, or something heavy gets accidently dropped on top of it, or it gets drowned in liquid the device will more then likely break (if you do not have a good protective case).  Now, protective cases have their breaking and melting points too, but takes some effort to reach these points.

Cases come in a range of prices and protective capabilities.  For instance, you can get a plastic case that is designed to only protect against being dropped, or you can get a case that protects not only against drops but allows you to submerge the device in water.  My best advice for picking out a protective case is to figure out what you can spend, go to amazon.com and look at reviews for the various cases that you can buy, and then go to the store and check out the product.  Like every product, you have your good quality items and your cheaper quality items that don't do the job right.

The bottom line is a good protective case is worth the money. But, do your research first as to what protective case you should get yourself. Happy shopping!

Do you know ANY apps that make typing on a touch-screen viable? I haven't found one that comes close to matching the blackberry's QWERTY pad.

Asked by ANR almost 4 years ago

Hi ANR,

for apps you can go to the app store and do a search on "keyboards".  One of the best alternatives to the keyboard that comes with your iPhone is an app called "Flesky - Happy Typing".  Another pretty good alternative is called "Fast Keyboard".

Personally, I love using Siri when I can. You can not use Siri in very noisy places yet. But it is my favorite alternative to the keyboard.

Do you repair other brands and if so, which one do you think has the POOREST workmanship / quality?

Asked by igim111 almost 4 years ago

Hi igim111,

For the past couple of years I have mainly been dealing with iPhones, iPads and Blackberry's.  Whenever I am hanging out with friends or family and they have a new mobile device (such as a Galaxy) I always play with it. Or when I'm in a store that is selling a variety of mobile devices I will spend some time handling them.  On the surface, all the mobile devices I have handled, are of at least good quality structural wise (such as the outer casing).  Some of them (such as some of the Windows mobile devices) have disapointing touch screens because they are hard to get a feel for or require a lot of pressure to make them work.  I found the latest Galaxy to be a good phone...though, I am very disappointed with the user interface flow as I find it messy\unorganized which makes it hard to find your way around the device. 

The Blackberry's have always been a pretty good device except for one thing that, for some reason, RIM has not resolved in over 10 years.  The Blackberry will freeze on you.  And when it does the only resolution is to take out the battery and put the battery back in.  This has been a problem with the Blackberry's for a good 10 years.  Why RIM has not resolved this really annoying issue I have no idea.  For many years Blackberry's had the corporate market. Sadly , since RIM has failed to stay up to date with consumer wants and demands over the past few years, I am seeing more and more companies dump their Blackberry's and go to either the iPhone or an Android phone.

I have heard that mobile devices in other countries are not always of the best quality (probably to make the phones more affordable for that market). Right now, my main complaint with some of the mobile devices out there is either their touch screen or the lack of good user interface with the operating system the mobile device has.