Santa Service: Making the holidays easier


Christmas Cat sez..
Originally uploaded by bnilsen

Putting tech items under the tree this year? Great! But are you also giving the gift of frustration at no additional charge?

Around this time of year, we get lots of questions about what this year’s best tech gifts might be. Of course the most popular this year is the iPad (I recommend purchasing at MacXprts located inside iCafe). Other popular items are laptops, digital cameras and MP3 players.

When you were a kid, how frustrating were the phrases “Assembly required” and “batteries not included?” You’d rip open the wrapping paper only to wait for hours for the setup or until the next morning because Mom didn’t realize it was AAA and not AA. It’s enough to wish for the days of the Red Ryder, but then as we know, someone can lose an eye.

Tech toys for the grown ups are the same way. While they may include batteries and be already assembled, they aren’t ready to use out of the box. Let’s take the iPad (don’t take mine though!) Here are the steps that are typical

1) Open the wrapping paper and explain “Oh my an iPad”
2) Kiss your spouse
3) Maybe complain they spent too much, your choice
4) Turn it on and be faced with an iTunes icon and a USB cable. Darn, can’t use it yet
5) Hook it up to your computer–not enough USB ports. Need a USB hub, but it’s Christmas and most stores are closed
6) Now your computer wants an update to iTunes–can you find the password to install the software?
7) Next, your antivirus (on a PC) needs to be configured to support a new version of iTunes
8) Once iTunes is configured, the iPad wants to know your Apple ID. Do you remember it and your password?
9) After those steps you have to wait sometimes up to half an hour for iTunes to reconfigure your pictures for the iPad
10) Now that you’ve done all the syncing (on average 45 minutes), you can disconnect the iPad, unless you have MobileMe that automatically syncs the iPad over the Internet with your computer. I highly recommend the MobileMe program and it too needs to be configured
11) So now your iPad is usable for music, but now you need to connect it to your wireless network (even if you have an iPad 3G)
12) If you can’t find your wireless password, your router needs to be configured. Otherwise, find your wireless password and network info
13) Ok, you can browse the net and listen to music, but additional steps may be needed to setup your email especially if you use hotmail, yahoo or gmail
14) Great, now you can do the critical things with the iPad, but the apps are where it’s at
15) Unless you have previously owned an iPad, you’ll need to download iPad configured apps and then set them up properly. Common examples: Netflix, hulu, and Facebook
Now it’s time for dinner. Wasn’t that a great way to spend the holiday?

I have a better way….

1) Setup an appointment with DoctorDave – we’re open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day even.
2) Hand us the tech item and answer a few questions
3) We’ll do all the work and set it up
4) Then we’ll explain how to use it briefly and which cable goes where
5) Box it up for you
6) Christmas day open the box, kiss the spouse, complain if applicable
7) Finish your morning coffee

Wasn’t that better? Not everyone takes advantage of our “Santa Service,” but more should. We can’t promise the kiss or the lack of complaining Christmas morning, but we can promise it will work out of the box for you. No assembly required and batteries will be included.

Happy Holidays!

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