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New iPod or repair old iPod - Carlos Camacho - Apr 30, 2010 03:18 PM

Hello all,
My brother called to say his old iPod doesn't play sound anymore. It functions fine, but no audio via the headphones. (He tried a different pair). He went through a reset but it seems to be some other issue. He says one site will do a diagnosis for $20 and then whatever repair is needed. My guess is that it is a 30GB model. Any good repair shops online? Or should he just trade it in for for a Nano?

New iPod or repair old iPod - Carlos Camacho - May 10, 2010 05:24 AM

Yesterday my wife and I went to an Apple store. It's about 45min from my house. After getting a kick at viewing my wife's blog on an iPad I went to 'the counter'. This was only my 3rd visit to an Apple store. I've never talked to any of the staff. So really, I had no idea how the store works. So I venture to the counter and ask, 'Can someone help me with a broken iPod?' I was asked 'Do you have an appointment?' I worked in retail consumer electronic sales for 7 years (sales and management), so I was a bit confused. 'Appointment?' The 'genius' behind the counter informed me that I would need an appointment. I said, 'So I need to go home and make an appointment, and then drive back?' Since they were 30 min away from closing for the day, it would be too late. I looked around the store and counted 8 Apple staff standing around doing nothing.. I'm sure they were ready to do something, should a customer get stuck using an iPad or need to buy some iPod accessory. As I tried everything at home to troubleshoot my brother's iPod, I was (am) pretty certain the logic board was shot. So I would assume it needs to go back to Apple. I tried to explain this to the 'tween' at the counter. She says 'We don't fix iPods.' ??? I walked out.

I reflected about my experience as I drove home... Was it due to the ever decreasing of customer service in America? or the increasing in the perceived 'evilness' of Apple? (aka we got you by the b@lls) I'm pretty certain had I been back in Japan, the Apple store employee would have helped me on the spot.

I'm pretty ticked off. I've probably used a Mac longer than that tween has been alive. Mad

New iPod or repair old iPod - AndyKorth - May 10, 2010 06:59 AM

You can make an appointment at the computers in the store. There should be a Concierge button on each machine's desktop. It's a little weird, but it's basically their form of 'take a number', since there's usually a line of people wanting to meet specifically with the genius people.

New iPod or repair old iPod - MattDiamond - May 14, 2010 03:43 AM

They may not fix iPods, but I've heard of several instances where they replaced it on the spot. Depends what's wrong with it and whether it's in warranty. (Though my bro-in-law got them to replace an iPod Classic that was a week out of warranty, not by making a scene, but by being polite and mentioning the Apple laptops he'd bought for his kids recently.)

A little weird that the non-busy staff wouldn't help you. Maybe only the geniuses look at broken stuff? I saw a crowded Apple store a few months ago, and one staffer was sitting outside on a mall bench, teaching a lady something about her laptop. And when I was waiting in line to pay one of them came over to take my order instead of letting me wait 60 seconds for the next register... If there was a reason, they should have explained it to you.

New iPod or repair old iPod - EvolPenguin - May 14, 2010 07:50 AM

Having worked in an Apple store (as well as my dad and brother both working at Apple Stores), I can tell you a couple things. First, Andy Korth is right that you can make an appointment right there in store, I'm surprised they didn't tell you that you could. Secondly, Matt is right in that the people standing around are most definitely sales people, who are not supposed to be fixing iPods and such, they are there to do sales. The ones who fix computers are called Geniuses, and are generally not on the floor, but may be behind a counter. They are generally only in the store when needed, otherwise they are in the back room working on machines that are there that they need to fix. If it's under warranty there's a good chance they will just trade it out for a new/refurb one.
A question: did you have the iPod with you? If you just wanted to ask questions (but didn't have the iPod) you could have said that, as that's a slightly different situation and people could advise you (whether or not its still under warranty for costs etc). But in any case, next time you can make an appointment on Apple's website before you go, but that is only really if you have the iPod with you. I kind of got distracted while writing this and lost my train of thought, but feel free to ask any quesitons.