In a J Dog Funk

by Anthony Magnabosco on August 31, 2012

jdogfunk

This saga is still on-going, but we will be sure to post the actual chain of events here. Stay tuned!

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Chat Etiquette Awry

by Anthony Magnabosco on July 31, 2012

We receive a ton of phone calls, chats, and emails from our customers, as well as individuals who have a general inquiry, or are seriously interested in one of our products and/or services. For the most part, the people we encounter are very friendly, communicate clearly, and are oftentimes downright charming. Nearly all just need a few questions answered and want to be reassured that they are dealing with a reputable company.

Every once in a while, however (and we were just saying that this seems to be happening a bit more often lately), we find ourselves in a chat or email discussion with an individual that makes us want to step outside and take a breather.

This one just happened today:

CSR F.: Hi, thanks for contacting Milliamp today. How can I help you?
Jack Inquiry: Hi CSR. I sent an email regarding “refurbishment” of 2 Ipods earlier.
Jack Inquiry: I also wish to order something right away off your sight but I will have to pay using Paypal and I do not see an option to do that.
CSR F.: we unfortunately do not accept paypal payments…sorry
Jack Inquiry: I would like to do business with you. What about money order or?
CSR F.: I’m sorry but we only accept credit or debit cards
Jack Inquiry: Debit would work for me but I am not familiar with using my debit card online
CSR F.: does it have a master card or visa logo on the front?
Jack Inquiry: one moment while I check
Jack Inquiry: no credit card logo but Interac and Plus
CSR F.: we can use debit cards but they have to have a credit card logo to give us online capabilities
Jack Inquiry: do you accept a prepaid Visa debit card?
CSR F.: yes, you will just have to enter it’s information on our website and we should be good
Jack Inquiry: I would have no problem paying the incurred Paypal charges if that is the problem. I rarely find sites that do not accept Paypal anymore
CSR F.: please review our online checkout process so you can see what information is needed
Jack Inquiry: I do not understand your last entry
CSR F.: go to our website and select what services you require, this will lead you to our checkout process
Jack Inquiry: We have been through this allready I would like to use Paypal (I am willing to pay the fees if that is the problem) If you will not do this I will have to arrange a prepaid Visa with my bank. Could you tell me when I will receive an answer regarding my earlier email to your company
CSR F.: I am the customer service rep at this time, I have yet to review your email as I am helping you on chat. You will have to set up a prepaid card with your bank, again I am sorry but we do not accept paypal
Jack Inquiry: Up to the point that you stopped answering my questions your customer service was good, but now it is deteriorating. Am I boring you by trying to do business with your company?
CSR F.: no sir, I am simply answering you an handling phone calls as well. If you like we can end this chat and I can review your email.
Jack Inquiry: Good idea
CSR F.: ok, I will hop right on that.
Jack Inquiry: Thank you
CSR F.: hello Jack
Jack Inquiry: yes
CSR F.: I don’t see your email
CSR F.: what email address did you use
Jack Inquiry: my apologies it seems to be stuck in my outbox. I will send it and let you respong by email. Thank you
CSR F.: thank you

Facepalm.

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“Hold On” – The Sky Divided

by Anthony Magnabosco on January 24, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello Millampers!! It has been a very long time since I’ve posted anything. Sorry about that. Well some pretty exciting things have happened since we’ve last seen each other. My band, The Sky Divided, released our first full length record. You can find it on iTunes and Spotify. Some of you may even find some songs off our record on your iPod after you get it back from a repair. :)

Another cool thing is that I have now been to Haiti twice with my church. Once in June and then again in October of 2011. I was blown away by how much help they still need. It has now been 2 years since the earthquake and there is still trash and rubble everywhere. Don’t get me wrong, progress is being made. From June to October I could see some big changes in certain communities, while others still are struggling. During my first trip I met a group of young men called “The Yung Goddis” (young men of God). This is a group of young men that gave their life to christ shortly after the earthquake and began to help rebuild their community. I was amazed at how much they look out for each other. One day while working on a project¬†removing rubble from where someone once lived, we made them peanut butter sandwhiches. We had enough for each of them. Well once we started handing them out they would tear it apart and start sharing with the next guy. They didn’t know we had enough for all of them and their first instinct was to make sure everyone ate. No one tried taking the first bite. I was in shock. When was the last time I did anything like that? I don’t even share with my own brother!

I was so humbled and inspired by these guys. So, one morning I woke up, grabbed my acoustic guitar and went up on the roof of the orphanage we were staying at and wrote a song. That song is called “Hold On”. I wrote it with these guys in mind. Life isn’t easy for them. They never know when their next meal is coming. So I got back to the states on a Friday morning, by Saturday afternoon my band was in the studio recording the song. Then we filmed a music video for the song. Our goal for this video and 3 song EP is to raise money for the Yung Goddis. All the money we raise will go their school supplies. Uniforms, books, etc. So, if you get the chance, check out our video and see what life is still like in Haiti. Then, if you feel it in your heart, you can purchase our 3 song EP for a minimum of $2, but you can give as much as you would like.

I hope you have an amazingly blessed day, friends! – David

To see our video for “Hold On” visit:

http://youtu.be/RH4hwWZOsmU

 

To purchase “Hold On” visit:

http://theskydivided.bandcamp.com/

 

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twitter-username-during-ecommerce-checkout

twitter-username-during-ecommerce-checkout

Coming soon to a milliamp checkout near you: the ability to enter your Twitter Username (e.g. @milliamp) when you are going through the checkout process on our websites. This is something that I have never seen before on an eCommerce site, but something that I fully expect you will see more and more over the coming months and years.

Imagine: in addition to recording your name, address, email address, phone number, and and special order comments, you can also add your (optional, or course) Twitter Username. The idea here is that, in addition to getting a shipping notification or device status emailed to you, you could also get an update tweeted directly at you (and for your friends to see and remark on as well).

How cool is that?!

Best regards,

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
milliamp.com

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Behold the Beauty of Twitter

by Anthony Magnabosco on September 13, 2011

Time and time again, I have seen the power and beauty of Twitter with regards to our iPhone, iPad, and iPod repair business that we conduct here at milliamp.com (you can follow us at @milliamp, btw). Rather than talk about how Twitter has become a powerful tool for us to engage with our customers in near-real time, I thought that I would just show you a recent exchange here:

And this gentleman was kind enough to leave us a nice review when it was all said and done, too!

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Busy Beavers Over Here

by Anthony Magnabosco on August 8, 2011

busy-iphone-repair-beavers

busy-iphone-repair-beavers

We have been busy, busy, busy, not only trying to keep up with the deluge of iPods, iPhones, and iPads that hit our doors each day, but also making sure that our websites look good, convey lots of information and trust, but also function properly as well.

You would think that, after more than SIX YEARS in this business, we’d have shopping carts, conversion funnels, hover-over text, order data extracts, etc. nailed, but it is a continuous, frustrating process, but we are determined to get our websites working and looking great, no matter what it takes.

Most people do not know it, but many of the emails and phone calls we get each day from customers wanting to buy something from us also give us suggestion (or harsh critiques!) on what they liked and did not like about our website. These suggestions never fall on deaf ears – we weigh each suggestion accordingly and then often improve the site – sometimes within hours of the suggestion.

It seems that, whenever I take an order at our front counter or over the telephone, I see something on the site that jumps out at me, be it a rare typo or price discrepancy, a weird link, goofy graphic, or a field that looks out of place in our shopping cart. What a great team that we have where I can take a snag-it screenshot, email it off to my hard workers, and hours later have it fixed!

In closing, I wanted to mention a new business that recently sprung up – it’s a site that is all about twitter marketing and is called outsourced-tweets.com, and it is pretty cool business idea, if I do say so myself.

Have a great evening, and remember, if you spot an error or even a fancy new addition to one of our websites, you can be sure our busy beavers will have/had something to do with it. Chomp on!

Best regards,

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner

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On Friday, we reported that we had been informed of issues with the newest version of iOS (4.3.3), the¬†iPhone 3GS, and our replacement batteries. We had a similar instance of incompatibility this time last summer, but fortunately, this time around the issue is not much of an issue at all. After extensive experimentation and research, we have concluded that the Milliamp iPhone 3GS replacement batteries are perfectly compatible with iOS 4.3.3, so if we alarmed you with our blog on Friday, I’d like to apologize on behalf of the entire company.

What’s perplexing is that we confirmed the “error 29″ issue a customer reported to us, but when we tested our batteries again today, there was no problem at all. I feel so strongly that our batteries are compatible because of the number of times I was successful in installing 4.3.3 on an iPhone 3GS with our battery inside. I currently have one of our batteries installed in my 3GS and running 4.3.3 so I can field test the performance and look for any issues that may crop us as a result of our battery. I’ll post any significant findings here.

So, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to call us, email us, facebook us, tweet us, or even leave a comment on this blog and we will get back to you post-haste.

If you’re interested in replacing your iPhone 3GS battery, take a look here (we offer a DIY kit/intructions, too!).

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possible-apple-ios-iphone-3gs-battery-compatibility-issue

possible-apple-ios-iphone-3gs-battery-compatibility-issue

We had two folks that contacted us today (one in Singapore and the other in Chicago), each having experienced issues with a third-party iPhone 3GS battery whilst upgrading to the newest iPhone operating system available today, iOS 4.3.3, specifically, Error 29.

Hearing this, even from just two people thus far, made us quake in our boots – we experienced a similar issue before when Apple released iOS 4.0 and blogged about it right away back then as well. We eventually figured out how to obtain new iPhone 3GS batteries that played nice with that operating system, but it was a pain in the ass to manage all of those folks that needed their recently-upgraded batteries upgraded again.

Taking one of our iPhone 3GS’ that was running an earlier iOS, we installed one of our iPhone 3GS 1200 mAh batteries, and sure enough – freakin’ Error 29. When we re-installed the old stock battery, the device worked with iOS 4.3.3.

While it is WAY too early to tell how big of an issue this is going to be, you can rest-assured that we will be on the front lines and will figure our a solution.

Until then, hold off on upgrading to iOS 4.3.3 if you have recently installed a new battery in your iPhone 3GS.

More information to follow as soon as we have something more definitive to report.

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Email: anthony@milliamp.com
Cell Phone: 210-787-9482

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I Miss You, Cup Holder…

by Anthony Magnabosco on March 31, 2011

Strongly considering this as an alternative...

Recently, my husband and I acquired a super cool Subaru wagon as a second vehicle and have been really loving it so far. Sure, it’s from the ’90s, has about 160k miles on it, but dangit, it’s¬†in excellent condition and fun to drive! Plus, there’s tons of room inside which is really nice for a certain baby that’s coming this July (:))… Moving along, it has been fantastic not having an extra car payment, so I’m in heaven with this car (though it will never take the place in my heart reserved for my cute, little red Mazda).

However, I must say, I am DESPERATELY missing a simple feature that I never thought would be absent from any: CUP HOLDERS! Lord, how I miss the cup holders when I drive the Subaru. Apparently, there was¬†such thing as a time when cars were meant for driving and not as miniature living environments. I really hadn’t a clue that this was the case is many (if not most) older vehicle models, so I’m obviously either sheltered or spoiled. ;) However, now I am a little wiser and will keep this in mind when my husband asks to use my car!

Seriously, imagine your vehicle without cup holders. You might think, “Eh, no¬†big deal,” but it’s a helpless feeling when¬†you have a¬†cup in¬†need of a secure spot.¬†Sure,¬†you may not always use a cup holder for, well, cups, but it’s nice having a little extra space where you can put your iPhone or iPod in, or even store your spare change here and there.

If you’re like me at all, breakfast is somewhat of an afterthought. Meaning, I’m about to leave and realize I haven’t put anything in my stomach since the night before! This usually means that it’s a ‘cereal in a cup’ kind of morning. Ya know, grab some mini wheats, pour ‘em in a plastic cup, add milk, grab a spoon and go! I can be really innovative sometimes. To be fair, I only eat at stoplights, but that doesn’t mean it was a hassle driving with one hand while my delicious breakfast stared at me in the face.

The lesson of the day is:

Don’t take your cup holders for granted. You’ll miss them¬†when they’re gone.

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Happy “Friday” Y’all!

by Anthony Magnabosco on March 25, 2011

just-voted

just-voted

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Some more food. Maybe the last one…….

by Anthony Magnabosco on March 16, 2011

Yea right. haha. Ok folks, I ate at some more new places.

“Texas Roadhouse” – I’ve heard some really good things about this steaek house from friends and family, so I was really excited about going to it. Once I walked in….my guard was up. Peanut Shells!!! All over the floor. They have a billion hosts, give one of them a broom and start sweeping!!¬† For it being a Friday night, we got our table pretty quickly. Our waitress was very nice. Great customer service. She gave us some rolls and¬† the weird butter/spread. My mother tried dooping me and said I wouldn’t like the butter. So I ate a peice of break with out it. That bread is awesome!! So then I put some of the cinnamon butter on there and it was even better!! Silly Mom. I ordered a 16oz New York Strip (go big or go home). I DID NOT like their original steak sauce recipe. I didn’t bother asking for any other kind because the steak was pretty delicious on it’s own. My sides were veggies and mashed potatoes. Both were just….ok? Eh. Throughout my stay, the floor felt slippery under the table. Well, as I walked out of the place, I realized there was steak sauce all over my favorite pair of chucks. :-/ Not cool. This place gets a¬†6 out of 10.

“Yard House” – A good friend and I got try this place out Saturday night. I really, really liked it. The place was packed, but we were seated right away. The service could have been a little better, but they were super busy, so I suppose it’s understandable. I ordered this really strange new dish….yea….right…. I ordered their bacon cheddar burger. It was pretty stinking awesome!! The bacon was crispy and had a really great pepper flavor. The cheddar cheese was just as good. I dont know how they did it, but it was very melty all the way through. Maybe the burger was so good that I ate it quickly. :) The beef. Wow. It was juicy and cooked perfect! I believe they served what is known as “shoestring” fries. Whatever they were, they was pretty awesome too! I really enjoyed this meal. So good. Apparently they have a pretty good¬†beer selection, but I don’t drink so I couldn’t give you any info on that. On their sign, they say something about classic rock. Well I was jamming! The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Led Zepplin, and Peter Frampton were just a few of the great classic rock artists that were playing the soundtrack to my great meal. However, at some point, they decided that Owl City’s “Fireflys” (or whatever it’s called) was pretty classic rock and played it. Boo. Despite that one screw up, I can’t wait to go back and see what else they have to offer.¬† They get a 9 out of 10.

We’ll I hope everyone is having a great spring break. Be safe and stay classy!

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Yo, Texas!!

by Anthony Magnabosco on March 7, 2011

Hello friends! How’s everyone doing out there? Well, I hope you said great! Ok, so I have a¬†2 food reviews for you. Strangely, both resturants have Texas in¬† their name.

“Texas Hamburger Company” – I’ve been meaning to go to this place for a long time now. I’ve been missing out!! Now, most new burger joints that I try seem to fail in the flavor of the beef. NOT HERE. More and more, I notice that burger joints are hiding their plain beef patties behind fancy buns and dressings. I can’t stand that. Above everything else, the beef should be what you talk about after you eat it. All of us techs went out to lunch here and we couldn’t believe how great the quality of the beef was (TWSS). Of course, I got their bacon cheese burger. The bacon was equally amazing, which is pretty rare for me to find. I wasn’t too crazy for their fries, but that could be due to how amazing the burger was. :) The only other problem was the price. It was a tad on the pricey side for being a burger place, but I feel they can back it up with the quality of their product.

“Texas Pride”- My fellow technician, Jon, has been raving about this BBQ place for months now. He’s always trying to get us to go there. The bar for BBQ is set pretty high for me (thank you SALTLICK!). So I was a bit hesitant. Well, after a long weekend of playing music for my church’s youth group, we all decided to pig out there. Before I started working here at Milliamp, I was a manager in the fast food business for about 5 years. I worked for 2 different chains at the same time (dont ask). The people I worked with loved serving great food to people, and I loved being apart of that atmosphere. When I go eat somewhere, I love hearing the wait staff/servers talk about their favorite meals there, basically being friendly. Well the folks at TEXAS PRIDE do exactlely that. They love working there and talking about the food they serve. Great customer service. I got their “3 meat dinner” with brisket, baby back ribs, and turkey. The turkey was a bit on the cold side, which was weird since¬†I was their 3rd customer of the day. It was alright. The brisket had some great flavor to it. Probably some of the best I’ve had. The meat came right off the bone on the ribs, which is something I look for. Really good flavor as well. Their sausage was the best part! Jon’s, sandwhich had too much, so he gave me some it. They also have THE BEST mac and cheese I’ve ever had. It had a little spice to it, but it complemented the cheese¬†very well.¬†Another side I¬†had was German potato salad.¬†Blah. Big mistake. Not so good for me!¬†They also had some of the best sweet tea I’ve ever had. I drank about 3 large cups of it! That clown, GUY, from the food network holds this place in high regard as well. This place is no¬†Saltlick, but I enjoyed it and would definately go back.

Well,¬†that’s it for me friends, I hope you have a great week. Please, go try somewhere new to eat. But don’t go to that one place……you know…there. :- /

P.S. It makes me happy to see that a few of the Krystal Burger places in San Antonio have shut down. :-)

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All Eyes on Milliamp

by Anthony Magnabosco on March 2, 2011

It was a crazy, crazy day yesterday, as all eyes turned to milliamp.com where flocks of people headed to pick up one of our free pentalobe screwdrivers – you can still get them on our website, and we will probably continue to offer these freebies for a few more days, so don’t delay! The news wires and websites and blogs and twitterverse were buzzing with our free pentalobular screwdrivers, and here’s a glimpse of the craziness that we experienced:

all-eyes-on-milliamp

all-eyes-on-milliamp

Stats from yesterday showed that we nearly quadrupled the number of hits and pageviews to our website – cool!

Mid-day yesterday, some customers reported trouble during checkout, but that was only because so many people were hitting our site at the same time, so if you were patient and placed your order later in the day, you likely had no issues. And you can always pick up your free screwdriver for removing those pesky pentalobe screws here:

http://www.milliamp.com/iphone-pentalobe-screwdriver.html

Thanks, and enjoy!

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Milliamp LTD

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Free Pentalobular Screwdriver – Another Milliamp First

by Anthony Magnabosco on March 1, 2011

milliamp-pentalobe-screwdriver

milliamp-pentalobe-screwdriver

With all the gnashing of teeth regarding Apple’s new pentalobe screws now becoming standard on all new iPhone 4′s, we thought we would put people’s minds at ease by simply giving away the damn screwdriver. You can get a new pentalobular screwdriver by heading to our website and grabbing one for yourself (limit one per customer, please).

While you are on this product page, you can grab the free tool, but if you are a serious iPhone 4 user, you may want to consider sliding up to our deluxe pentalobe screwdriver for a few bucks more. The ones we have in stock now are gold in color, and have that handy rotating end cap on the handle – something you grow to like when you work with small repairs day in and day out.

And we added this cool product option as well – if you really do not want pentalobe screws in the bottom of your iPhone 4, you can swap them out with an original Phillips-head style screws (screws and Phillips-head tool for just a buck).

A free pentalobe screwdriver – only at milliamp.com.

milliamp-pentalobe-screwdriver-free

milliamp-pentalobe-screwdriver-free

Regards,

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
milliamp.com

P.S. Here is that link again – share with your friends! http://tinyurl.com/free-pentalobe-screwdriver

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Woz’ Up With that Business Card?

by Anthony Magnabosco on February 27, 2011

We encounter a lot of interesting folks in our line of work. From that one guy iwho sent us an iPhone 3G for a new battery because it was “only” providing about 23 hours of use on a full charge, to the fellow who walked into our shop asking us to load up a few hundred songs on his device (um, what?!). Now, I would be lying if I said that Steve Wozniak himself strode into our shop for a bit of iPhone repair love, but his business card did make it into Milliamp LTD headquarters recently.

It is quite a specimen, and from a bit of googling, I am not the only one that has gushed about it, so I won’t blur out any of his personal details:

woz-card

woz-card

The card is made out of a thin sheet of metal, and has been laser-etched by a company called PlasmaDesign, which is located in the United Kingdom. You have to look around on their site a bit, but they even boast about making Woz’s business cards:

plasma-design-woz-card

plasma-design-woz-card

They apparently make the cards in a few different shades of colors; their green sample looks quite similar in color to the green leaf in our milliamp.com logo. The cards must be wicked-expensive, however – the detail on them is just exquisite.

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
milliamp.com

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Milliamp Does The TBTL-A-THON

by Anthony Magnabosco on February 24, 2011

In one of my last posts, I wrote a brief dedication¬†of my favorite podcast, Too Beautiful To Live (TBTL for short), for those of you who don‚Äôt remember or didn‚Äôt read it, you can check it out here. In short, TBTL was a Seattle¬†radio show and is now a podcast that isn’t really about anything in particular;¬†I think it could¬†be considered the Seinfeld of podcasts. So, with their move from the real radio to the imaginary one, funding¬†has been reduced quite drastically and to make up the difference, they are in the midst of TBTL-A-THON, a week of asking their listeners to give back and help keep the podcast going; in fact, it’s an awful lot like the NPR pledge drives.

Personally, listening to this podcast makes my mornings go by so much more smoothly and keep me from the morning grumpies, so I place a pretty high value on the show and was already planning to sign up to give $10 a month. As of late, Anthony, our fearless Milli-Leader, has come to enjoy the show and offered to pledge $500 to support the podcast, but also wanted to help TBTL raise more. So Anthony and TBTL Host¬†Luke Burbank¬†(if you’re an NPR listener, you may have heard him on Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me)¬†worked out a challenge of sorts; if the wonderful “10′s” of listeners to the podcast could match¬†Milliamp’s $500 pledge¬†during the show, TBTL would be awarded our pledge! By the end of the show, the 10′s had indeed met the challenge, and we were very, very excited to have been able to help out the purveyors of our favorite imaginary radio programming. If you’d like to hear the podcast in which we were laid down the challenge, click here.In all seriousness, if you haven‚Äôt heard the podcast, but have a penchant for self-deprecating humor, 30 Rock, nonsensical audio drops, people with poor mathematical abilities, and some light-hearted discussion about nothing, give the podcast a listen, and if you enjoy it, why not help them out a little!

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The Great San Antonio Blizzard of 2011

by Anthony Magnabosco on February 5, 2011

I have been living in San Antonio since 2000, and I have never seen snow here until this past weekend. On Friday, we received .04 inches of snow, I am told. But the manner in which this little bit of ice and snow captivated (and shutdown) our town was remarkable.

Snow in San Antonio is a rare sight. When I peered out the window at 5:30am, I had to do a double and triple-take, for the entire street was covered in white. My wife and I bounded out of bed to wake the kiddos. They couldn’t even wait to get shoes on at first, and rushed outside to see and feel it for themselves.

YouTube Preview Image

After turning on the news and learning that all major roads and highways were shut down, we looked around the garage for something to sled on and took to the hills near our house. We had a great time sledding, first just my family, and a couple hours later, with the entire neighborhood (plastic laundry baskets with a bit of anti-stick cooking spray on the bottom turned out to the best combination).

I am originally from Chicago, so I’ve had my fair share of snow experiences. But to see the town close down because of such a small amount of snow was somewhat comical. But it made sense – there is no equipment in San Antonio to manage ice and snow removal. The snow itself was very interesting: it was very fine and granular, dry, too. It took a lot of pressure to squeeze the snow into a throwable snowball. But we did manage to make a few and have a great snowball fight (five of them made it to our freezer to be used for a July 4 snowball [iceball] fight, so stay tuned for that).

I thought for sure that the roads would be dry by Noon, so we planned to open up the Milliamp offices at 1pm, but when I started driving in around 12;15pm, the main interstate was still closed, and the feeder (side) roads were choked with trafic. I turned back home and we called it a day.

All in all, it turned out to be a very fun day for grownups and kids alike, and the local news station even used a bit of our tobogganing video on a teaser to their snow coverage broadcast.

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Milliamp LTD

millisnow

millisnow

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2011…Food in pill form.

by Anthony Magnabosco on January 31, 2011

Hello Milliampers! Wow, 2011…..and we’re already 1 month in!! I swear, once you hit 20, time goes by sooooo fast. Im about to be 24, so time has been speeding along for me. I haven’t written a food review in very long time, so here we go!

RUBY TUESDAY

Ive heard a few good things about this place from friends and family, so I went to check it out last week. Once you walk in, the place looks pretty nice. I won’t get into the interior decorating, but I thought it looked good and was worth mentioning. Here’s where I became a skeptical Hippo. The menu. Right away I got the vibe that this was a place for older folks (no offense to those of you 50 and over) just from look at the menu. Now, you guys know me. I LOVE burgers, so that’s what I wanted. They offer up something called a “prime meat” burger line, which is supposed to have a higher grade of meat. To be honest,¬† I couldn’t taste the difference between the $11 burger from them and a $6 burger from Chilis….or however you spell it. :) The beef was alright. Nothing special at all. Perhaps they need better seasoning?! What I really enjoyed about the burger was the cheddar cheese they used. I believe it was it was Aged New York Cheddar. It was pretty amazing I must say. By now I would think that you know that I don’t have a big vocabulary, so I don’t get into describing the texture and flavor and blah blah blah. It’s not my style.

At the end of the day, Im glad I experienced the place, but I wouldn’t pay to go there again. I would much rather have a burger from one of my usual spots. I’d like to go back to try something else, but we’ll see. So I bet you’re wondering why the title of this blog mentions food in pill form…..well I dont know. I had to get your attention somehow! Stay classy internet.

-David

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Our Sig Line Gets a Make-Over

by Anthony Magnabosco on January 19, 2011

I have a friend that once thought, as we emailed each other back and forth several years ago, that I was typing out my entire name, address, and phone number at the bottom of every response to him. What he was looking at was my signature line – that part of the email that you set once and never change.

But here at milliamp.com, we tweak it every so often.

We just did that, so next time you get an email from us, look for these aspects:

1. See who you are communicating with. First Name and First Initial of Last Name. Great to know who you are communicating with, and for people that are sending devices to us, gives you a good understanding of all the people it takes to move a device through receiving, evaluation, repair, testing, shipping, and anything else in between.

2. Our tagline reinforces what we do (in an Apple-friendly way). Note the addition of the word ‘iPad’. iPads are here to stay, and we’re going to keep fixing them.

3. You can find the toll-free number to us on our site, but for our signature line, it’s our 210 prefix number. What person who owns an iPhone really cares about long-distance phone calls these days anyways?

4. We are all over the internet, and here are many of the links to learn more about who we are and what we do. Note the “call to action” before each one.

new-milliamp-signature-line

new-milliamp-signature-line

Tell you what – email us now (service at milliamp.com) and see if for yourself!

Best regards,

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Milliamp LTD

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Milliamp Reviews the New ResellerRatings.com

by Anthony Magnabosco on January 9, 2011

We have been using resellerratings.com for years now. Initially, it was because we had to, and now, it’s because we want to.

Now, I am a big believer that, if you have any issue with any aspect of my company, I want to know about it immediately so that we can make it right for you, and then implement changes that prevent it from happening again to someone else. In fact, no other iPod repair company that I am aware of encourages their customers to call the owner (me!) directly (210-787-9482) or via email if they have a problem or concern that is not being addressed by my stellar Customer Service Department.

I think that’s a much more effective way of getting an issue resolved, as opposed to filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau or making a negative review on sites like ResellerRatings.com. Bottom line: give us a chance to fix the issue, and if we don’t, head to RR and fire away!

But the increased relevancy of ResellerRatings.com (RR) has caught my attention these past few months. And now, with their recent site re-design and increased exposure alongside Google search results, I felt RR warranted another Milliamp review.

In fact, the changes that RR have made further distances themselves from the more stodgy and less accurate BBB. The main difference between the BBB and RR is that a customer can only submit a complaint to the BBB, where on RR, a customer can submit a complaint or a compliment. This alone makes RR more favorable in the minds of merchants over the BBB. On top of that, merchants can respond to the review left on RR, whereas on the BBB, you can internally respond to the complaint, but all that relevant detail is never seen by the public. And RR recently expanded the review criteria from one overall ranking to several components of the transaction: overall satisfaction, cost, shipping process, and customer service, to name most. This may not seem like a big change, but the end result is likely a more accurate and fair review. Most reasonable people who will leave a review on RR will fairly rank a company on each of these criteria – but if they ding a merchant all across the board, it really makes the reviewer look catty, bent on destruction, with no reasonable consideration for the entire business exchange. While it is not clear how reviews made on RR in the past when there was just one criteria on which to rank factors in the overall score when mixed with these new, more comprehensive rankings, it is a welcome change for merchants.

With these new features, however, comes a price: most small companies will be asked to pay RR $99 per month to be able to see the order number of the person leaving the review and be able to respond to the review (perhaps the most controversial aspect of RR’s business model). If you are short on cash and don’t want to maintain an account with RR, you can usually figure out who left a review of your business by examining the username (which is typically similar to the customers’ email address) the customer used for their review, or from the details of the review itself, but again, you won’t be able to publicly respond to the reviewer for others to see.

The RR site has changed quite a bit, too. While not quite 100 percent complete (there are still a couple of broken links), the site is a major improvement of the first iteration that we have been familiar with.

Now, there seems to be a greater focus on reviews, and less focus on shopping. I have personally never started to look for a product by first going to RR – perhaps people actually do this, but it still seems like an unusual place to start for me yet. A great indicator of this change are reflected in the positioning of the two search boxes: the ‘Find a Store’ search box now appears before the ‘Find a Product’ search box:

milliamp-review-resellerratings_01

milliamp-review-resellerratings_01

And you no longer have to hunt around to figure out how to leave a review; at the top-right side of the Home Page is a big button to start the review process:

milliamp-review-resellerratings_02

milliamp-review-resellerratings_02

One of the most “entertaining” part of the RR site is their ‘Best and Worst List’, which is still present in the re-vamped website. Here you can read up on the most highly-ranked companies, and shake your head when reading about the worst on the list. I have to admit spending a lot of time reading the both, to try and gain insights on the best way to run my organization.

milliamp-review-resellerratings_05

milliamp-review-resellerratings_05

RR also rolled out a new logo, which should become more and more of a common sight as more business start to display the logo on their websites:

reseller-ratings

reseller-ratings

I have a few suggestions for RR to consider to help make their business more useful to merchants:

1. Discounted pricing for merchants based on their overall rating. Merchants that have higher rankings should be rewarded for their “good behavior”.

2. Allow merchants to specify if they want a specific review to appear on search engine results pages. This could be configurable so one could say, for example, to allow any reviews between 7.5 and 10 to appear, while anything less would not be crawled.

3. Allow merchants to integrate reviews left on RR with their Twitter accounts. The tweet could include a tinyurl link back to the actual post. This too should be configurable so that a Tweet would only occur if a particular threshold was met.

In closing, I have been impressed with the growth and influence that ResellerRatings.com has acheived. On top of that, the few times that I have needed their assistance with account maintenance, they have been very responsive and helpful.

Best regards,

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Milliamp LTD
Cell: 210-787-9482
Email: owner@milliamp.com

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Little Orphaned iPods

by Anthony Magnabosco on January 4, 2011

Happy New Year, Milliamp-ers! Now that we’ve got Christmas underneath our belts, we’re so excited to keep knocking out repairs left and right¬† like nobody’s business. We have an excellent, streamlined process in place that really makes things easy for you, as the customer, to send in something for repairs. I love talking to new people on the phone, especially when they’ve just come across our website and see a toll-free number to call. Sure, they might have all of the information they need at their fingertips from our website, but they just want to TALK to someone about what’s funky with their iPod. We’re totally, 100% a-okay with that and encourage you all to do the same! Even if it’s a simple question, please call! In the off-chance we happen to miss your phone call, please leave a voicemail and we’ll get back to you promptly.

Okay, so I’m talking about streamlined process and people calling with questions, and I just have to divulge what the number one question is:

How does this process work?

Simple, right? Well, in the world of iPod, iPad and iPhone repairs, you’ve got a lot of options. Do you want to do it yourself or do you want a fleet of experts to do the fixin’ for you? Do you want to ship it off yourself, or do you want one of our lightning-fast emailed shipping labels to be sent to you? Lastly, do you want to save some cash and get free return shipping or spend extra and get it shipped overnight just in time for your nephew’s birthday? Either way, we’re standing by to help you with any help! We’re experts when it comes to shipping AND communication, so feel confident in knowing that we’ll be giving you the lowdown on what’s your best option if you have an important shipping deadline to meet.

Believe it or not, as much information as what we have on the website about how the process works, we still have a modest stack of orphaned devices that came in without any type of real identification or order confirmation number. Yes, it’s crazy, right?! We have people that send in their naked¬†$300 iPod without any kind of contact information! Now, let me tell you that this isn’t being broadcasted to lure any shady people in so that they can claim, “oh, yes–that’s my iPod!” You’re going to have to provide a lot of identifying details so that we can be 1,000% we’ve got a match with its rightful owner. Mistakes happen, so we realize sometimes people forget to include their order numbers!

If you want to know the secret to getting a really smooth experience with us, submit your order online or with a Customer Service over the phone before you ship your device to us. We receive a ton of packages any given week, so if we didn’t have everyone do this, we’d be swimming in a sea of homeless iPhones and iPods!!! We absolutely need to who that cute little purple iPod nano belongs to (Dads, you SAY it’s your daughter’s…), what service you would like¬†us to complete and where we ¬†are going to ship it back. Communication is key, so if we get a package without any name on it, we have no way to contact you (and nobody wants that). :( Plus, we can’t work on it until you have an order with us!

Please, if there is anything that we can put on our site to make this a bit more clear, let us know! We absolutely love suggestions and observations to help streamline the process even more. For repairs, did you know that we email you every single step of the way while it’s here? That means that you’ll know when it has arrived, when it’s repaired (or evaluated), tested and ready to ship again.

Well, happy trails, all!

Contact us at service@milliamp.com or toll-free at 1-800-809-8133 with any questions!

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Diminished Battery Life with iOS 4 Explained

by Anthony Magnabosco on December 29, 2010

The grim reality of owning a device equipped with a lithium-ion battery is that the battery will lose ¬†its ability to hold a charge as it ages. This means that your Apple iPhone, iPad, or iPod’s battery life will eventually diminish to a point where use of the device will be inhibited by the length of time the battery will hold a charge. So, when that time comes, what can you do? buy a new device? No! you can have the battery replaced by¬†one of our¬†expert technicians and have peace of mind knowing that if your Milliamp.com battery loses its ability to hold a charge, you’re protected by¬†our 10 Year Battery Guarantee!¬†As the Operations Manager at Milliamp.com, I make it my¬†mission to ensure that we offer the best services possible, and that starts with using only the highest quality parts and¬†maintaining methods of repair that are the industry standard. One of our most popular services is our 2nd and 3rd generation iPod touch battery replacement. These generations of iPod touch are beginning to experience diminished battery life, so we see A LOT of these devices come through our shop every day.

Back in June, Apple delivered to us their newest, shiniest, and most powerful software to date¬†for the iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad, and they called it iOS 4. iOS 4 has proven itself to be one of the more contentious software releases Apple has ever seen, iPods and iPhones were experiencing very strange problems immediately following the software update. Issues with iOS 4 ranged from diminished battery life to error messages that left devices “bricked,” we even happened upon and¬†addressed an iPhone 3GS battery incompatibility issue within days of the software’s release. Since June, there have been several updates to the OS meant to repair certain bugs and improve the speed at which a device¬†processes the software, but even now, with 4.2.1 (the most recent update), there are still issues with iPods and iPhones¬†loaded with iOS 4; specifically, battery life with the 2nd and 3rd generation iPod touch. Since the launch of iOS 4, the Apple discussion forum has been abuzz with customer concerns of this nature, resulting in a battery life thread that exceeds 120 pages of iPod owners voicing their concern¬†surrounding the diminished battery life their devices encountered with the iOS 4 update.

Since the iOS update, we have¬†replaced hundreds upon hundreds of batteries in the 2nd and 3rd generation iPod touch and have in turn seen a marked increase to the percentage of these devices that return to our shop with claims that our batteries’ performance was very similar to¬†customers’ original Apple battery. As these returns became more frequent, we leapt into action and began to search for a solution, we knew the reputation of our services would depend on our success. We contacted our suppliers and demanded that the batteries be better tested before being shipped, we revised the process by which we installed the batteries, we began testing the newly installed batteries for even longer, and we even began reading and writing a battery’s voltage on the battery so that we could refer to it in the event that the device was returned for diminished battery life!¬†When all of these¬†preventative measures made little difference in the¬†percentage of returned iPods, we began to perform experiments on returned devices¬†in hopes we would uncover the source of these battery issues without having to install another battery. We found that¬†the vast majority of returned iPods would test out perfectly well.¬†So,¬†what could be the explanation for¬†an¬†increase in returned devices and ¬†the discrepancy ¬†between our testing results and our¬†customers’ experience with their iPods? As it turns out, iOS 4 was the culprit all along.

As our research and experimentation came together¬†and as iOS 4 became more popular and more people upgraded their software, more devices were being returned, and the overarching constant in nearly all cases was the installation of some version of iOS 4.This¬†discovery begged the question,¬†how could there be such a discrepancy between our battery test results and our customers’ experience with their iPods? The answer to that question gradually revealed itself to us when we examined the way in which we test newly installed iPod batteries. Typically, we fully charge a device‚Äôs battery with a wall charger and then begin a four hour “playdown” in which we play the device’s music with the screen locked; all other functions are turned off. The most common story we heard from our customers was that they would leave their fully charged iPod in sleep mode overnight, only to find that in the morning, the battery was either dead or nearly dead. The realization of why this specific¬†experience was so prevalent and widespread was quite shocking; a device loaded with any version of iOS 4 left in sleep mode with wi-fi, bluetooth, location services, and/or push notifications turned on will never actually enter sleep mode!¬†Only the device’s screen will be locked, giving the impression that the device has entered sleep mode, but¬†actually, under the hood, the device’s battery is ¬†quickly dwindling away¬†because¬†the device’s¬†most notoriously power hungry features are still completely active.¬†¬†While we were glad to find out that our methods and batteries are perfectly good and reliable, it was¬†infuriating to learn that iOS 4, unlike its predecessor, was created to have “persistent wi-fi,”¬† meaning that if wi-fi functions aren’t manually turned off, the device won’t enter sleep mode. So, while Apple advertises outstanding battery performance, they never advertise the conditions under which they attain these remarkable results; clearly, they aren’t anywhere near realistic conditions of use! While Apple does offer suggestions on how to improve battery life, they’re buried deep in the Apple website and don’t address the real battery issue, their software. So, to sum up, whether you have or have not replaced the battery in your 2nd or 3rd generation iPod touch, if you have upgraded the software to any version of iOS 4 and¬†your device’s battery life is less than ideal, you should consider turning off all of the device’s power hungry features when the device is not in use; you can do so by simply engaging “Airplane Mode,” this feature turns off all wi-fi related functions.¬†If after trying this approach, you are still experiencing diminished battery life, you can be confident in a decision to send your iPod touch to us to have the battery replaced, because regardless of¬†power hungry features, a¬†1-2 year old device will still have lost some of its ability to hold a charge,¬†and a brand new Milliamp.com battery will be a vast improvement from the original.

Have you had a similar experience with an iOS 4 loaded iPod touch? Let us know about it! Tell your story in a comment!

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Tron Friday

by Anthony Magnabosco on December 20, 2010

tron-friday

tron-friday

Despite the backlog of work, we closed up shop a bit early last Friday and we all headed to Paladium at The Rim to see the IMAX 3D version of Tron Legacy. I liked the fillm and will probably purchase the DVD when it comes out.

Here’s a few comments from some of the other employees that attended the movie:

Daniel: “Visually mind-blowing.”
Wes: “Seeing ‘Tron’ was like witnessing an iPhone jailbreak go wrong. The grid was in peril and a simple ‘restore’ saved it.”
David: “Visually amazing!! Kind of made me scared of the future though!”
Martin: “Stunning visuals. A perfect compliment to the gift Tron.”
Chris: “Tron in my opinion was a masterpiece designed to ignite the imagination and devour your senses. I enjoyed the movie so much that I would have loved to have seen it put into a series form like ‘Lord of the Rings’ or ‘Harry Potter’. The movie kept me standing on my feet because sitting at the edge of my seat just wouldn’t be enough.”
Jon: “A true masterpiece of our time!”

Bottom line: go see it.

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Milliamp LTD

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What Bin are You?

by Anthony Magnabosco on December 11, 2010

We are fans of simple solutions that improve communication and enhance productivity.

A good example of this are the bins we use to keep track of all the iPads, iPods, and iPhones that are in our shop at any given time. You see, we have this neat color-coding system that helps us differentiate between the various types of repairs:

bin-chart

bin-chart

Red Bins: These are the bins we hate to see, since they contain devices that have been sent back to us for a second look.

Blue Bins: We use this bin when a customer purchases a kit or a part and then enlists our services to help them out.

Tan Bins: This bin is used when we receive a device that requires our popular liquid-exposure evaluation service.

Yellow Bins: Devices get placed in this bin if they are for customers needing our regular repair evaluation service.

Green Bins: When a customer purchases a part outright and sends their device to us for repair, this is the bin we use.

White Bins: Reserved for our walk-in customers.

And just for the record, we don’t just dump your device in a harsh plastic bin. Each device we receive is placed in a heavy-duty anti-static bag so nothing gets scratched as it moves from stage to stage through our shop. We even have larger versions of these bins for the iPads that we repair.

bin-stack

bin-stack

So what bin are you!?

Anthony Magnabosco, Owner
Milliamp LTD

milliamp-exterior

milliamp-exterior

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