Saturday, February 2, 2013

The iPad Dessert

                                                            The IPad Dessert

When IPads first came out, I thought they were a waste of money.  After all, I had a computer and a smart phone, so what did I need the IPad for?

 Over time, I came to view them with avarice and wanting.

As I got older I can read my emails and go to web pages with greater and greater difficulty on my iPhone.  The images and fonts are too small and I “don’t need” glasses.  Therefore the answer is a larger screen, hence the conversion to seeking an IPad or tablet.

This past holiday season, I began looking at the IPads and the Android Tablets to see if I really wanted one and how much were they going to cost.

I watched the ads, went to the stores and was still undecided by the time Chanukah came around.

My wife watched me go over these things and sweetly decided she would get me one.

She and my daughter-in-law went to Brandsmart (an electronics and appliance store) to purchase tablets for me and our daughter-in-law’s parents.

Since they didn’t know very much about the tablets, they asked a salesgirl for advice. Unfortunately, the salesgirl either didn’t know anything or was told to sell a particular tablet to neophytes.  This particular tablet is an off, off brand, but it is inexpensive.

Based on the salesgirl’s advice, they bought two 10” tablets.

A few days later, my wife presented me with the tablet.

I set it up and tried it out.  It was horrible.  It could get emails but didn’t have the memory to run the web browser or do much of anything.  In addition it had a battery life of 2 hours! 

Over the next few days I played with it to see if I could get it to work better.  It didn’t.

I packed it up and brought it back to Brandsmart where I was told I only had 5 days to  return it and this was the 6th day.  I had never heard of this policy at this store and had a spirited conversation with the return manager.  The outcome was they refused to take it back and directed me to the manufacturer for relief.

I tried contacting the manufacturer.  As per their web page I tried to email them using their form.  It refused to take my complaint.  I called the 800 number and was told I had to email them or fax them to file a complaint or ask a question.  The 800 number was strictly for sales.

I faxed them my questions about improving the performance of the tablet as per their instructions and lo and behold they have never answered.  A wonderful company to be sure.  In case you are wondering it is called Tivax.

I resigned myself to just using it for emails when I was away from my home or country.

I recently went to visit my daughter out of state.  My wife and I told her of our difficulties with the tablet.  She immediately determined I needed an IPad like her husband and son had.  She proceeded to investigate pricing and specs on the various models.

Now, Apple doesn’t allow discounting on its various models, a practice I think is illegal based on the Sherman Anti Trust Act, but what do I know.  However, some stores have “open box” units available (units used for demos) and also refurbished units, as does Apple on its website.

I suggested we try BestBuy as a source of “open box” units since I had bought an IMac that way there.

We went to her local BestBuy and spoke with a salesperson.  He assured us he had “open box” units and even units that were about to “expire” which was better for us since we could get a 15% discount on a combination of open box and “expiring”.  Expiring meant that the unit had been in the store too long and was about to cost the store interest.

I agreed to take one of these units and the salesman went to get one.

After a short period of time, he returned with two units which were open box, but not what I wanted and more expensive than we had agreed on.  He said he didn’t have any others and never had any expired units, despite having assured us he had plenty.

We left the store and tried another BestBuy, a Target, a Walmart, and an Office Depot.

We returned home without an IPad.

We then went to the Apple site to see what they were offering. 

My daughter found a refurbished unit with more memory for a discounted price.  I bought it and had it shipped to her house since that’s where we were.

A few days later, the unit showed up.

I set it up and went to get a drink.  By the time I got back, the unit was gone. 

My wife had taken it; and she and my grandson were busy downloading games.

Even as I am writing this, she is playing various games and downloading others.  The tablet is now called: “Barbie’s” and Siri directs her comments to my wife.

It occurs to me that this is our “dessert” thing all over again.

She doesn’t want one (dessert or tablet), but once I have one, she takes at least half, or in this case whole.

I’m going to have to keep my reading glasses with me.

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