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December 26, 2012

Protect Gifted Gadgets into New Year


Santa has officially upped his game when it comes to Christmas. The Man-in-Red used to have his elves making wooden trains and rubber balls, but now kids are less easily impressed. This means that many gifts on wish-lists this year were technological – not to mention expensive.

From smartphones to tablets to video-game consoles, parents these days are risking a lot when buying for their kids. What happens when a brand new smartphone gets dropped? What happens when water gets spilled on that shiny new iPad?

Everyone should have concerns when gifting tech gadgets to their loved ones, young or old, and there are some important considerations that need to be addressed once the tree comes down and all the eggnog has been drunk.

The first thought that generally pops into people’s minds when it comes to tech protection is “insurance.” The problem with getting insurance for a tech device is the plans are sold through the carriers, such as Apple (News - Alert), or third-party companies like Squaretrade, which make all of their money selling these insurance plans.

This means that in short, insurance is expensive. Still, it needs to be considered seriously before the purchase of any device, as a replacement for the device is sure to prove even more expensive.

The reason insurance is so costly also has to do with the fragility of any tech device.

These gadgets are unfortunately not indestructible, so users have to consider every worst-case-scenario before they decide whether or not to make the investment in such extra protection.

“But wait,” you may ask, “can’t I just get a secure case for my phone or device, instead of insurance?”

The answer is yes, but no. Insurance isn’t the be-all, end-all of tech device protection, but such safekeeping goes way beyond getting a clunky case.

What’s more important for protecting your device is to get a screen protector, which will insulate the most fragile part of the phone (the glass screen) and prevent cracking or shattering when the device is dropped.

Here’s another helpful piece of advice: the device will be dropped. Regardless of all the care the new gadget owner promises they will take of it, the phone will inevitably be dropped at some point. Having a screen protector is the safest bet for limiting the damage in such an event.

Additionally, it is safe to assume the phone will be either lost or stolen at some point too, so installing a tracking program is a great way to reduce the stress of those “Wait, where is my phone?!” moments.

One program for the Android (News - Alert) is called Lookout, and a popular one for IOS devices is called Find my iPhone. These apps can be downloaded directly onto the device, and work by allowing the user to log onto a computer to wipe all the information from the lost or stolen device. So in addition to tracking on the computer where the phone physically is, the user can protect themselves against any leaked pictures, documents and other information stored on the phone before it is found or returned to its owner.

As the holiday season moves into the new year, let’s all make a resolution: keep our tech-gifts safe through 2013. 

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.




Edited by Braden Becker
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