No sooner had I written my last blog post on the decision to repair or replace an item was I confronted with the situation again. I walked into the kitchen to grab my iPad to do a quick search about something and, struggling to get the just-a-bit-too-magnetic Zagg keyboard cover off, both slipped from my hands and tumbled to the tile floor. Oops. Spiderweb cracks all across the iPad screen.
By no means am I a power iPad user, but I do need it to test new website layouts and configurations... and at the moment am embroiled in the development of a new digital format (coming soon) for our on-hiatus TurfNet Monthly print newsletter.
In any case, after the cloud of expletives and glass fragments settled down, I went to my laptop and started researching a replacement. Given the near-seamless, "unibody" construction of the iPad, it didn't even occur to me that it could be repaired. So I ordered a new one.
Later that evening (or the next morning), I posted something on the Forum about it. My TN compatriot, Jon Kiger, soon Skyped me to say there was a place near him in Atlanta that repairs them fairly inexpensively (~$150).
Hmmm. Maybe I was a bit hasty ordering the replacement... but I really couldn't put my project off for the time a repair would take.
I investigated the repair procedure and found detailed instructions and YouTube videos on the web. Not for the faint of heart, but I'm always up for a challenge, so I retrieved the busted iPad from the trash and ordered the replacement screen, digitizer and associated parts for a total of about $50. No harm in having a backup around.
Figuring many superintendents are using iPads (particularly out on the course) and are likely to run into this problem, Hector Velazquez offered to do the repair for me while filming it for an upcoming segment of Hector's Shop. What's not to like about that?
In this case the usual factors entering into the 'repair or replace' decision — value of the item, replacement cost, cost of repair, time to repair — were upstaged by 'interruption of workflow' considerations... just as I'm sure they would be with a spray controller repair or other item for which a superintendent would not normally have a backup.
Now, for the cool part. I received the new iPad, powered it up and as part of the setup process was prompted "Set up as a new iPad or backup from iCloud?". Hmmm. I hadn't realized my old one was backed up in the cloud. So I chose that option, and within 20 minutes or so all of my apps and iTunes music were reinstalled, automatically. Very cool.