When it comes to IPhone cases…don’t taunt the universe, because the universe will get you

It’s happened to many people, but never to me.

Me and my cheapo IPhone cases have survived years, years I tell you, of dropped phones, waterlogged phones, etc.  I have a fundamental issue with paying more than $15 for an IPhone case, because I think it’s a ripoff industry perpetuated by the greedy smartphone and accessory companies.  I have never had an Otterbox, and I never will.  So there.

Just two days ago, I said to myself, “Self, you are really smart to have such a cheap IPhone case.”  See, lately I’ve dropped the phone A LOT, and that $9.99 special has held up beautifully.  It was so banged up that just yesterday, I wandered into Best Buy to see if I could find a replacement, and of course they didn’t have one for my ancient IPhone 4S.  I walked out empty-handed.

Then, today, after dropping the phone at least 2 more times, I came home from a walk, felt it slip and heard a crackly high-pitched crunch I’d not heard before, and said to myself, “Self, you’re screwed.”  Sure enough, I picked up the phone and there it was…the spiderweb of doom.

Ok, let’s set aside my misplaced hubris about cases and focus on what happened next.

There was the moan of despair, followed by the held breath as I checked to see if the swipe features still worked (they do, which blows my mind).  Then, a moment of pause to reflect on the irony, and then I raced down the hall to my laptop.

A quick check of my Apple account revealed that I bought this phone LITERALLY 364 days ago, on 5/6/2012.  I dug through my receipts, found the proof, and fired up a chat with an Apple specialist, all ready to make sure those computers adjusted my expiration date on my 1 year warranty so I could get my repair.

Yeah, about that.

Turns out “damage” doesn’t mean “accidental damage”.  I’m not sure what other kind of damage there is, but hey, Apple doesn’t cover anything but that kind.  The friendly chat person informed me that $199 was the rate for an off-warranty phone, which was “far less” expensive than retail.  Gee thanks, ’cause I happen to have an extra 200 bucks floating around.

Next, I moved on to a Google search of DIY screen fixer kits, and found that I should probably steer clear of tiny screwdrivers and other such minutia.

Then, I visited my friend’s tech blog, Evolved Mommy, thinking surely she would have some advice for me.  She had a great recommendation for a repair shop…in Little Rock, which is about 3 hours from here.  Hmmm…so as a last resort, I called out to the twitterverse and got a recommendation within 2 minutes for a local phone repair shop that I’ll no doubt be checking out shortly.

So what’s the moral of this story?

1. If you’ve survived on cheapo IPhone cases for a while, keep your smug mouth shut.  The universe will get you if you taunt it too many times.

2. It might be time to upgrade if you’ve been scraping by.  The cheapo cases don’t hold up on tile floors.  I, for one, might be checking out the Lifeproof case, also recommended by Evolved Mommy, mostly just because I like the idea of taking my IPhone with me the next time I go whitewater rafting.  Whenever that may be.

3.  Limited warranties are just that.

4.  It’s impossible to take a picture of your own cracked IPhone screen with the same IPhone.  Just in case you were wondering.

photo credit: Kadath via photopin cc

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