The Apple Store

The Apple StoreI have a work-issued MacBook Pro I've been using since 2011. It's the machine I use when I need to do heavy lifting, and lately it's become rather sluggish.

I'm not an Apple guy, so I didn't really know the process. Silly little me hopped on his bike during lunch on Friday and pedalled with his MacBook Pro to the Apple Store at Sherway Gardens to talk to someone there about buying more RAM to improve performance. Apparently, you can't do that.

I was nicely told I had to make an appointment before I could talk to an Apple rep about buying more RAM. This is the Apple way.

I made an appointment for today, and biked back to Sherway Gardens to learn if I could salvage this MacBook Pro. They ran diagnostics and everything came back A-OK. Here's photographic evidence my hard drive passed the test.


So now I've been asked to see if the performance is better. I'm not sure they did anything, so I don't know why I'd see an improvement, but I biked home agreeing to come back if things are still shitty.

Of course, I have to make an appointment first. The appointment is mandatory.

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Got my MacBook Air in January - along with an iPhone. That's when I learned I had to make an i-appointment with an i-Genius for anything. It was so ridiculous I i-laughed. But I have to say, I i-LOVE my Apple shit. But, I know what you're trying to say.

May 12, 2014 @ 3:02 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I'm not even complaining so much as I'm sharing.

I had no idea. I happily carry an Android phone and own a Dell XPS laptop.

I never go into the Apple Store.

May 12, 2014 @ 3:05 PM

4x4 Time

I agree the whole appointment thing with a "genius" is a little odd, BUT, being a Mac guy the appointment (which can be made online at any Apple Store) is worth it. They are prompt to take you right away on time when it suits you.

May 12, 2014 @ 4:35 PM


@Toronto Mike
Where do you take your Dell if it needs attention?

May 12, 2014 @ 5:14 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


It hasn't required any attention yet, but I'd likely start at and go from there.

May 12, 2014 @ 5:20 PM

Alison in Ottawa

It is just so pretentious! I love my iPad but I am up for a phone change and am thinking of retiring my long beloved Blackberry (I know, I know) but just thinking about an iPhone and those "Genius Bar" people makes me squirm....

May 12, 2014 @ 5:21 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Alison in Ottawa

My wife owns an iPad. Every time I use it, I miss my Android device.

I just don't like iOS.

May 12, 2014 @ 5:24 PM


Re: tech support from Oh! that sounds like fun!

Admittedly, I've only gone into an Apple Store once, when I accidentally smashed my iPhone screen, but I actually appreciated the convenience of setting up an appointment online, knowing I was going to get knowledgeable, personal service at a specific time instead of taking the chance of lining up in a queue hoping the wait wouldn't be too long. I guess I'm pretentious.

May 12, 2014 @ 5:33 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Relax Corey, nobody's trying to take your precious iPhone away.

May 12, 2014 @ 5:39 PM


"From my cold, dead hands!"

Seriously, it strikes me as bizarre that in this era where everyone gripes about the state of customer service, we're complaining about a computer manufacturer that gives you the option of making an appointment for personal service, instead of diagnosing problems with some guy on the phone in India who won't be able to solve anything.

May 12, 2014 @ 5:49 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I assure you, I wasn't complaining. As a non-Apple guy, I just found it all fascinating. I had no idea I couldn't get service without an appointment, even when I was willing to part with cash to improve the performance of my laptop.

May 12, 2014 @ 5:54 PM


I love all my Apple products and customer/tech support is amazing.

It only makes sense to have an appointment, otherwise you'd wait forever. The employees in the store are really knowledgeable and actually spend time to understand what your issue is and stay with you until it's resolved.

And they have workshops (yes- you have to sign up) in store where you can learn about your new computer or iphone and they will answer specific questions. No cost!

I would never own anything but Apple because their support is the best.

May 12, 2014 @ 6:18 PM


omg you are a patient man. this kinda stuff makes me lose it.

May 12, 2014 @ 7:29 PM

Al The Royal Pain

I like the option of fixing my own shit when I can. When I can't there is no shortage of people who can help out. I can install my own RAM thank you very much. I don't need to put up with an Apple "genius" there are hundreds of others who can help fix my non-apple product that's the beauty of being a non-apple guy, I have infinitely more options.

You can keep all that other stuff. It just sounds so...annoying.

May 12, 2014 @ 7:52 PM


I know you weren't complaining but you should.

This is a timely topic. I have to take my phone (I refuse to call anything "my iphone" or "My ipad") but I digress. I had no idea I couldn't just walk in there and some dude would assist me with my issue. I figured if he couldn't I would leave my phone (again avoiding calling it my "iphone") with them and they would fix it.

I didn't realize I have to make a "date" with a techie.

May 13, 2014 @ 8:51 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


It's bizarre to me, because this experience will end up taking days and days as opposed to hours.

It's their store, their rules, I guess. The Apple fans will love it, the rest of us will wonder why we can't just walk in and talk to someone about our problem.

May 13, 2014 @ 9:26 AM


I've been to the apple store with an appointment, they just booked me in for 15 minutes from the time I arrived.

May 13, 2014 @ 9:48 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


At the Sherway location I went to, I had to choose an available slot. There was nothing available the same day.

May 13, 2014 @ 9:52 AM


I see. You would think they would have someone on staff there for walk IN appoitments only.

May 13, 2014 @ 9:56 AM

the brother

Mike, give BB10 a shot. free yourself from the iSheep! I have a Z10 (and it runs most Android apps) that I can lend you to take for a spin.

May 13, 2014 @ 10:30 AM

Ryan P

@the brother
You're awesome! Go BB10

This is part of the reason I stuck up so adamantly for BlackBerry in the past. Now, I'm on my Nexus 5 but still walk the line between despise and hate Apple and their products. I just really don't like how they work and how pretentious they feel

May 13, 2014 @ 10:45 AM

Aurora Bob

Apple is the evil empire. You are shunned however for saying so because Jobs could walk on water.

May 13, 2014 @ 10:49 AM


My office runs all-Apple. Had a few great experiences with ultra-fast turnaround repairing defective equipment, but the last MacBook Pro that went in was a nightmare.

They kept insisting the random kernel-panics must be a RAM problem and I wasted hours going back in three times with a still-busted laptop. Their diagnostics wouldn't reveal anything, but thankfully the computer kept a log of all the crashes because I'm sure they wouldn't have believed me otherwise.

Every time they told me a different story and gave me a different explanation. At one point they apparently somehow lost our RAM and had to replace it. After the fourth visit I got back a working laptop with a new motherboard.

I could understand wanting to check the RAM once, but god damn.

May 13, 2014 @ 10:51 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@the brother

I don't own an iPhone. I currently carry an LG G2.

May 13, 2014 @ 10:57 AM


So I'll ask my original question again. Where are you guys taking your electronic devices now where you just breeze in, talk to someone and get an issue resolved in no time?
If I'm given the option of driving out of my way in the hope that I won't spend an hour or more waiting around while people in front of me get served, or the option of setting an appointment that meets my schedule (even if it's a day or two later) I know which one I'm taking.
Do you prefer to show up at a popular restaurant hoping you might get a table? No, you make a reservation. Do you prefer hanging out at a walk-in clinic, or making an appointment with your doctor? Do you like it when the TV service provider gives you a 4-hour window of when they might arrive, or would you prefer to make it a specific date and time?
In virtually any other instance, assuming you value your time you'll make an appointment, but because this is Apple, it's pretentious and annoying?

May 13, 2014 @ 6:02 PM



I've always just dealt with warranty services. Some amazing, some awful. It's not exactly different from the Apple Store where I've had mixed experiences. Most hard drive manufacturers will ship you a replacement drive before even receiving your busted one back. (With your credit card on file in case you don't return the busted one.)

It's obviously a bit different doing it on a component basis rather than troubleshooting an entire computer. Still, I've heard good things from some other shops, like less-savvy friends have lauded NCIX.

It's disingenuous to use restaurants or health-care as examples -- apples & oranges. Yet, I've made my Genius Bar appointments and still had to wait 45 minutes. Especially irritating when I've had to go in for the same fucking issue three times.

May 13, 2014 @ 11:11 PM


@anon - why are those examples disingenuous exactly? The point is I would rather manage my time as effectively as possible and I think that's true of most people, except, apparently when it comes to servicing electronic devices.
I grant you that maybe the Apple Store service isn't great in actual practice. As I said, I've used it once. I'm more confused by the fact that the very concept is what seems to bother people.

May 14, 2014 @ 7:12 AM

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