If you have a business iPad go directly to Apple

If you have a business iPad go directly to Apple when there is a problem.

I recently helped a gentleman whose iPad would not turn on at all. Doing the regular troubleshooting steps did not fix it. I believed the iPad had just died. However since it was purchased from Verizon Wireless, normally the vendor you purchase from wants to deal with the issue.

I called Verizon Wireless and guess what they said? They said they would send a box and that box would be sent in to Apple! I said why not just go to an Apple retail store (i.e. Genius bar). They said I could do that. The problem is that because the iPad was associated with a user, Apple has been funny in the past requiring the Apple ID user to be the one who handles the issue. So I asked the user if he wanted the fastest service if he didn’t mind going to the Genius bar and he was open to it.

If you have a business iPad go directly to AppleHe told me that he dropped it off at the Apple store, had lunch and on the way out of his lunch he was texted that the new iPad was ready. They didn’t install the new programs or copy his data, but they nicely exchanged the SIM card and activated it. So that was nice. He came back and now I have reinstalled his software and he is back in business.

I had considered calling Apple first but when I had done that in the past, sometimes the Apple staff has said that they prefer the original seller to run it through their system first. I think calling Verizon was still helpful because if the Apple replacement doesn’t work it is documented that there is a problem. It always helps there is documentation when there is an issue.

So if you have a business iPad/iPhone and it breaks, save yourself some grief. Go directly to Apple and don’t bother trying to get Verizon to take responsibility.

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Which is better? Native email or Microsoft Outlook?

I have been helping a company move to Office 365 and one of the questions was which is better? Native email or Microsoft Outlook? I think the answer is Microsoft Outlook.

Why? For many reasons. Outlook is better integrated and you don’t have to shift between several applications to see your data. Yes it doesn’t allow you to add a contact like the native app does, but it also offers many features the native app doesn’t. What is even better is Microsoft seems to sincerely want to improve the app and even solicits feedback and feature requests. I believe this is a change in Microsoft finally listening to its customers.

Which is better? Native email or Microsoft Outlook?Another strong reason to use Outlook is the fact that is supports the most common things people want to do in email. It allows people to view PDFs inline, and also share information with other programs like Word, Excel and Powerpoint. This is a great help to those on the go. While I don’t use these programs myself, many business people do and find them to be useful. So for a business, it makes sense to go with Office 365 on an iPad.

If you didn’t use the office applications, you could certainly buy third-party stuff that would do many of the same things. The problem is that third-party companies sometimes drop support, go out of business, and many other problems with long-term support. So it becomes kind of dangerous game to not use the vendor supplied apps for compatibility and troubleshooting reasons.

There are many fine third-party apps that are in some ways better than Office 365. However, given that most companies don’t have experienced iOS IT staff, using the Microsoft apps makes more sense. I think Microsoft became and stays popular due to more people not wanting to be retrained or learn anything new, than it being the best option.

However in this case, Office 365 is a great choice for small and mid-sized companies.

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