Thursday, June 20, 2013

iPhone 4S Troubleshooting

iPhone 4S Glass is Shattered

Broken Rear Panel
Apple did not grace the rear panel of the iPhone 4S with the same high-strength glass as the front, so fractures are much easier to come by on the backside. If you read panel is smashed you must replace it with a new one.

Broken Front Panel
In most cases the iPhone will still work, just looks like an eye sore. The LCD/Digitizer are fused together and need to be replaced as one part.

iPhone is frozen or unresponsive
Restart iPhone
Sometimes all it takes is a restart for the iPhone to become responsive again. To restart your iPhone when it is unresponsive, press and hold the sleep/wake and home buttons until the Apple logo appears. This should take approximately 10 seconds.

Very Low Battery
It is possible for an iPhone to become unresponsive if the battery drops to an extremely low level. Plug the iPhone into your computer or wall charger and allow it to charge for at least 20 minutes before using it again.

iPhone 4S will not charge
Bad Cable Connection
Check the USB cable for damage and dirt, especially at the ends. Then try using the wall charger, as this will provide greater power than the computer/USB.

Obstructed/bad dock connector
Inspect the 30-pin dock connector at the bottom of the iPhone for dirt, lint, and damaged pins. Clean out the dock connector very carefully with a tooth pick or soft toothbrush. If the dock connector is broken, you will have to replace it.
iPhone will not turn on
Drained/dead battery
Plug your iPhone into your computer or wall adapter to charge. If it does not charge when connected to either of these, you probably have a dead battery. The battery will need to be replaced with a new one.
Bad display
It is possible that it appears nothing is happening because the display is bad. If the iPhone sounds like it is working properly but nothing is visible, it is possible the display is bad and must be replaced. Unfortunately, the LCD and glass panel are fused together, and must be replaced as one unit.
Bad logic board
If nothing else works, your logic board is probably bad and needs to be replaced.
"This accessory is not optimized for this iPhone" message
Obstructed/bad dock connector
Check the 30-pin dock connector at the bottom of the iPhone for dirt, lint, and damaged pins. Clean out the dock connector very carefully with a tooth pick or soft toothbrush. High concentration isopropyl alcohol (at least 90%) and a cotton swab should be used to clean any debris that does not come off with a tooth pick or soft toothbrush. If the dock connector is broken, you will have to replace it.
Dirty or corroded logic board connections
After an iPhone has been submerged in a liquid, there may be some corrosion or debris on the logic board connections that cause this error message. Remove the logic board and clean all of the contacts with a soft cotton swab and high concentration isopropyl alcohol (at least 90%).
Weak or lost wireless connections
Dirty antenna grounds
If your iPhone has been disassembled before, it's possible that finger oils were left on the grounding locations for the Wi-Fi or Bluetooth antennas. These oils will cause grounding issues for the antennas, which could lead to a weak signal or no connectivity at all. Be sure to clean all grounding points with an electronics cleaning solution before reassembling your iPhone to prevent grounding issues.
No audio or distorted audio through speakers or headphones
Bad headphones/speakers
It's unlikely your headphones or speakers are bad, but it's worthwhile to eliminate these as the source of your problem at the beginning. Try your iPhone with another set of headphones or speakers just to make sure that the problem is with the iPhone.
Bad audio jack
The most likely cause of audio output problems on iPhone 4S is a bad audio-out jack. If you have determined that the problem does not lie in your external speakers, you should replace the headphone jack.
Restore iPhone 4S
Corrupted software
It isn't often that Apple gives specific directions about how to fix your problem! Restoring the iPhone 4S will erase everything on it, so make sure everything on the iPhone 4S is stored elsewhere prior to restoring. To restore, connect your iPhone 4S to a computer with iTunes installed. Click "Restore" on the iPhone 4S summary page (click on your iPhone icon on the left menu to find this page). Follow the directions to restore. If your iPhone 4S displays the text "Please wait. Very Low Battery," leave it plugged in. This charges the iPhone 4S enough to be able to restore. If the iPhone 4S hangs on this screen for long periods of time, you may need a new battery.
Force restore mode
If your iPhone 4S is hanging with an Apple logo, or exhibiting some other software problem that prevents iTunes from recognizing it, you can force it into recovery/restore mode and then use iTunes to restore the software.
If the device is powered off, plug one end of your USB cable into the iPhone 4S and leave the other end disconnected. Press down on the Home button, and keep holding it down while you plug the USB cable into your computer. After 5-10 seconds, you should see a "Please Connect to iTunes" image on the iPhone 4S, and iTunes should prompt you to restore the software; follow the prompts and the instructions given above.
If the device is powered on, hold down both the power and home buttons until the device reboots and displays the "Connect to iTunes" image (generally, 5-15 seconds).

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Smartphone & Tablet Repair- Insurance Woes and Cheaper Alternatives

Todays topic is going to be covering insurance offered at Verizon Wireless and AT&T stores. Insurance is a must for many smartphone and tablet owners today that offers peace of mind and protection from theft. Asurion is the company working with Verizon and AT&T. Let's take a look at the cost for insurance through Verizon and AT&T over time.

Insurance requires a monthly fee. Currently, insurance is $15-$20 per month. This adds up to wasted money if the insurance is not utilized. A two-year contract amasses $360 in insurance charges that often is wasted money. If you do need to use the insurance, there is a $175 deductible.

Monthly Fee  $15
Deductible    $175

After submitting a claim to Asurion, you are often given a refurbished phone that is back to factory settings within 1-3 days. On the new (refurbished) device, all of your old data is gone.  This includes contacts, pictures, apps, etc. Often you have spent more money of insurance than the device is probably worth when the insurance is utilized.

All in all, insurance on any technology is usually NOT worth it. Why would we claim this when we offer insurance ourselves?

We approach insurance in a different manner. If we could come up with a better name for insurance, we would call it that. Unfortunately, insurance has a direct correlation with safety, and safety is something we all seek. 

The cheaper alternative to insurance is having your device repaired by iDoctor. We create value for our customers in three primary ways. 
1. No Data Loss
2. Same-Day Repairs
3. Cheaper than replacing/insurance

The one instance that insurance can actually be worth the hefty charge is if the device is stolen. After paying a deductible, you can get a refurbished device. A refurbished device on eBay is about the same price. Buying a broken iPhone 4 and having us repair the screen is by far the cheapest replacement option.

At iDoctor we offer same day repairs on the iPhone, iPod, and iPad. We don't erase any data. We care about technology and are avid users ourselves. Repairing a device is the way to go! Although we do have a biased opinion in this area.

If there are any questions about insurance or iDoctor please contact us on Facebook at

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Water Damage | Your first actions are Critical!

We are going to start putting out a blog here to help our customers in more ways than we previously offered. I want to keep these blog posts short and simple, for you sake as well as mine! Let's get started.

Water Damage...What can I do to save my device? What steps help defeat the dreaded water damage?

Let's set the stage. Your wonderfully beautiful iPhone 5 was just soaked. It is out of the water, and thoughts of desperation set in. What do I do?

First things first.
Power the device down
If you can access the battery directly, take it out. If inaccessible (in the case of Apple's iPhone, iPod, and iPad), shut the device down ASAP as normal. Avoid plugging your device into the computer or any source of power. The water is not the only instigator that is ruining the water damage iPhone. The electricity running through the water that bridges many of the different components is what ultimately kills many devices.  Water damage, if handled correctly, is fixable 90% of the time.

After shutting the device down.
Removing the Water
The widespread knowledge is to place the device in a bag of rice. This not the best option. Silica gel is a better alternative than using rice, however it is not as easily accessible as rice. Still silica gel will not get inside the device onto the logic board which is the most important part of a device. It is crucial in most cases to get the device powered down and brought in for a cleaning. Generally when either rice or silica gel is used a charger port, headphone jack, earpiece speaker, or loudspeaker can be damaged in the process.

Our water damage repair process has been highly researched and is currently the industry standard for best practices. Some of the equipment we use involves a Crest Ultrasonic CP-500 machine that has a specific chemical mixture in it for best results. The ultrasonic cleaner will perform wave frequency sweeps evenly throughout the ultrasonic chamber to clean the PCB in every small area. Even under chips that are BGA soldered on. This usually includes devices main processors. Apples A series chips or Samsung chips. A certain way of drying the PCB board is required as well. Having the cleanest air pass over the board to dry it is also essential for best results so a heavy duty air purifier is necessary to complete the best possible water damage repair.  Also, the liquid on the board from the initial damage to the ultrasonic bath may have weakened some solder joints. We have a solution for this too! Placing the device in a chamber that is heated just enough to make sure things are solid while doing no damage to any of the IC or transistors on the board.

All of this is very in depth for simply saving a phone. Sometimes our process can simply be the difference of yes your phone is alive and you can recover your photos and data, or a short circuiting processor because corrosion has formed causing a short and the phone is DEAD!

Really water damage has an easy solution.
1. Turn the device off.
2. Bring it in ASAP and do not plug the device in or try and turn it on. Do not let it dry and that is the stage corrosion begins to build on the internal circuitry. We have sophisticated equipment to clean the entire logic board and give your device the best chance it has at survival.