UberMac. Why We’re Not Your Typical “iFix” Company.
Back in 2008, we registered iPhoneFix.com, which is probably (and arguably) the best domain name in the world if what you’re going to do is repair iPhones for a living. And we still own it to this day. But we no longer use it, and feel that it is important to distance UberMac from the thousands of “iFix” companies that exist today, and here’s why.
I started to notice people calling and coming into our store, and confusing us with these other “iFix” stores. I had people that were angry at us that we wouldn’t repair their phones because their husband or wife told them that “The iFix” place fixed it last. And we would try to look them up in our system, and sure enough, it was always some other company that repaired their phone. And people also confused us with why their phones were having issues so soon after their repair. And again we would help them to discover that it wasn’t us. It became embarrassing to be associated with, or have the word “fix” in my name anymore.
One more example is when I had just met someone and told them what I do and that I own iPhoneFix, and their whole demeanor changed and they started complaining to me about how my company “screwed their mom over” on an iPhone repair. He told me that after it was repaired that it stopped working the next day and she brought it to Apple and they told her that the part that they used went bad, and that when she tried to get it replaced they told her they couldn’t help her. I was beside myself, but I knew for a fact that it wasn’t us. So we had to go through this whole thing where I had to convince him that our company would never do that. After regaining some respect with him, we called his mom and sure enough, it happened to be this company way down Indiantown Rd in Jupiter. It was confirmed that it wasn’t us, but it was enough to make me think. And think I did. It was time to get away from the “iFix” name association, I thought.
But, there are some “iFix” companies that do a decent job and use pretty decent quality parts for their repairs. But then, there are MANY that don’t. Believe us, we’ve seen their work come through our stores over the years.
From day one, as the owner of iPhoneFix, I adopted a standard for iPhone repairs at my company and I passed it along to the few (and chosen) technicians that I employed. And that standard was as follows: “Make sure that every single screw goes back inside of every single phone, and make it look like no one was ever inside.”
The reason for this standard? Well, I knew that the iPhone industry was going to grow extensively, and that eventually I would have competition. And when my competition opened one of the iPhone’s that we had repaired before, if and when they noticed that that iPhone had been repaired before, I wanted to set an example for that technician and my competing company. I wanted that technician to say to himself “Wow. Those guys are good.”.
And sure enough. As the industry grew, we had competition move in. And when they moved in, we started getting their repairs. And we saw the work that they did. 90% of the time we would just shake our heads. The work was just terrible. Missing screws. Wrong screws in wrong places that were causing blemishes in LCD’s, loose home buttons, improperly glued glass, Missing plates………. I mean hey, we all have to learn somewhere, but it should never be on a customers devices. It should be on your own, in my opinion.
Now, with that said, we are not perfect either. We have had customers come back and we have made the occasional mistake. And it has always been corrected. But yes, it happens to us all. But adopting standards and admitting when you’ve made a mistake are priorities everyone should adopt. It will make you better at what you do if you learn from those mistakes.
Now, let’s talk about the explosion of the iPhone repair industry.
Around 2012, suddenly it seemed, everyone with a few thousand dollars and a little knowledge from YouTube could open an “iFix” store. And boy did they open. To this day I joke about the fact that almost every strip mall I pass in Ft. Lauderdale has a Yogurt store, A Vapor Store, and an iPhone repair store. Those industry’s have obviously exploded as well.
But with this explosion of iPhone repair stores came people looking to make a quick buck “fixing iPhones”. By now, YouTube had tons of videos on how to repair these devices. (Old man rant, shakes fist at the air: “Back in my day they didn’t have video’s on the “intertubes” showing how to fix iPhones. We had to break our own and learn from experience!”)
Soon, I watched the kiosks in the malls pop up. I watched the competition move in to Jupiter and South Florida. I even watched one local business copy my business model, logo, color scheme, and everything verbatim. I watched the websites pop up. I watched the names pop up too. iFixyourthis, iFixyourthat, iCrackedmything, ithis, ithat, i, i, i, iiiiiiiiii.
Enough. Every variation of the “iFix” thing has been done. And adding an “i” got everything has also become an industry standard. iRepair. iRobot. iHome. It’s just time to get away from the “i” fad. It’s been done to death.
But I want to say, there are a few companies that, I think, have done it right. There are a few companies where I have seen their work, that I have been impressed with. So It makes me feel good that some guys are training their techs to have some standards to their repairs. But the reason for this article is to try to explain why I am distancing myself and my company from the “iFix” industry.
Many newcomers are what professionals in our industry call “Youtube Technicians”. These are techs that learn from Youtube, fix a few phones, then get a couple thousand dollars together and open a store or start repairing mobile. But many are pressured to make a quick buck to get the money back, and in turn shop for the cheapest parts possible to sell their customers.
Cheap parts will not only make the customer angry because of all of the revisits they’ll need to make to you, but they also are of very low quality, hence the first part of this sentence. This is a complete disservice to not only the customer, but to our industry as a whole.
Over the last 3 years, our customers have expressed to us how they feel like most of the “iFix” iPhone repair stores that they enter have a low quality, and many times even a “shady” feel to them.
One guy in particular that my customer expressed a lot of concern and complaints about, was a guy who used to come into our store and have these phones repaired. They were always phones that he had tried to repair, but couldn’t get back together or get them working properly after he tried to repair them. He always paid in cash, and we would ask his name for our system and he would tell us to just call him “Money”. 6 months later, and after repairing at least 4 iPhones for him, he decided he would be an iPhone repair technician, and bought a cube truck, and drove around performing repairs. In the back of the truck, he had a couch and a desk, and would invite the customers in while the repair was being performed. Many people used the word “creepy” when describing the overall experience. And we re-repaired many of that guys repairs because when the part went bad, he always had an excuse as to why he wouldn’t fix it, or he would just stop answering the phone altogether. Needless to say, he went out of business.
Another thing that the “iFix” industry has bred are fake certification claims. Many of these “iFix” stores advertise that they have “Mobile Repair Certified Technicians” or some other certifications. Well guess what. Almost all of these certifications are made up. Made up right out of the air to make them seem legitimate. There are now a few actual certifications these days, but no way to truly verify if those technicians are actually certified. So I recommend Googling the “Certification” claims that these stores are trying to claim that they have.
Few have actual Apple Certified technicians performing repairs. I have seen one company ever. And we at UberMac, actually require, pay for, and give incentives, for our technicians to obtain an Apple certification. This way our customers can verify our certification claims on Apple’s website, and it also shows that we at UberMac, actually care enough about what we do, and care about our customers enough to obtain these certifications.
Fast forward to today. January 3, 2017.
A few months ago, I took a look around when I was in Las Vegas for CTIA, and I thought to myself after observing all of the names that were there, and realizing the over saturation of these words, “I want to separate from this whole “iFix” thing.”. We are well established, we have a great reputation. Our work speaks for itself. But it’s risky to take one of the best domain names in the industry and no longer use it for marketing. But I decided that it mattered enough to me that it was worth it. So I changed the name of my company to better reflect who I believe we are as a company.
So I changed it to UberMac.
Why UberMac, and no I won’t come pick you up. (Har har. We get it.)
Well, Uber is a German word meaning “the top of” something or “the highest of”. That word resonates because we are one of the very best at what we do, and I truly believe that. So do many of our clients if you were to ask them. And then I added the word Mac purely for branding reasons, and because hey, we are Apple guys after all.
So what we are trying to say in this article is this. You can take your expensive Apple iPhone to any one of the tens of thousands of iPhone repair stores in the world. But how does it feel when you walk in? Is it open and inviting? Or is it small and uninviting. Are they Apple Certified Technicians that are employed there? Or are they claiming some fake certification that doesn’t even exist? Have you looked at their Google and Yelp reviews?
Because coming to an UberMac store to have your iPhone, iPad or Apple iMac or MacBook computer repaired, you won’t have to guess if you’ve come to the right place to have your devices repaired or fixed. You’ll feel it. You’ll know it.