I have a terrible habit of dropping brand-new Apple products right after I get them — and yesterday morning was no exception.  While I was at the Post Office in Queens, my less-than-two-week-old iPhone 5S slipped — “sleeked?” — from my hand and smashed on the floor breaking the screen.

Have you noticed the Post Office gives you really slick and teflon-like coated printed receipts that are, like, three feet long when you just buy one stamp? When I tried to put the receipt in the same hand as my iPhone, the receipt won, and my 5S got a whole new tutorial on the real meaning of “AirDrop.”

I was sickened.  I dropped my iPhone 4S quite a few times in the past and the screen never spidered.  Maybe the Post Office concrete floor was just too much for my new 5S beauty to handle.

I was immediately reminded of my previous, Best Apple Support Story Ever Told  experience — when my brand-new iPad was knocked out of my hands — and knew I’d have to, once again, invoke my AppleCare+ status, cross my fingers, and hope for the best.

Quick end:  Apple Gave me a new phone, as you can see in the iMessage confirmation below with my husband that he captured for this story.

Longer story:  Keep reading!

When my iPhone screen broke, it was still usable.  I iMessaged my husband.  He went online and set up a Genius Bar appointment at the Grand Central store an hour before I had to teach ASL at NYU in the afternoon.  The Apple Store in Soho that I usually use didn’t have any Genius Bar iPhone appointments available for two days.

I was excited to visit the Grand Central Apple Store in Manhattan.  What a pretty shrine to technology and architecture!

Upon arrival, I was told by an Apple employee at Grand Central I’d have to wait 30 minutes because the Genius Bar was behind schedule.  I was slightly concerned about getting from 42nd Street to Greenwich Village in time to teach, but I decided to stay and sweat out the delay.

I didn’t know if they’d swap me a new iPhone or try to repair the screen.  Since the fingerprint reader is so precisely connected to the screen, I was concerned that a quick repair might not let me login with my thumb any longer.  I really like the fingerprint reader.  That feature alone is worth the price of the new iPhone.  Oh, and the “fingerprint thing” my husband mentioned in the iMessage did, indeed, have to be re-trained when I got home later last night.

Ten minutes later, I was with a Genius and, without pause, she saw the cracked screen and instantly processed an entire replacement phone for me!  Yay Apple!  I was super excited.

This email was sent right away by Apple — while I was still in the store — letting me know my old iPhone 5S was “off the grid” and unfindable.

Here are the embarrassing and gory details of the repair — that were also emailed to me while I was waiting in the store.

I’m sharing this with you because I urge you to always get AppleCare for all your Apple devices.

In case you can’t read the screenshot, here’s the text part of my “Problem Description/Diagnosis:”

Issue: Customer reports vice fell out of her hand and cracked

Steps to Reproduce: Visual inspection of device shows cracks on the front of display

Proposed Resolution: Replace with deductible with AppleCare plus

Cosmetic Condition: Some marks to the bezel, impact point in bottom left hand corner

AppleCare is worth every single penny.  Apple replaced my entire phone for a $79.00 USD fee.  A Godsend!

In another five minutes, my iCloud backup was restoring my all-new iPhone 5S and, magically, I was back in the real world again with a beautiful new, sleek, non-damaged iPhone — and I was ready and steady to head downtown to NYU and teach my hands off!

Thank you Apple, and especially the Genius Bar at Grand Central in New York City.  You stood by me and helped me and saved me from my own lousy grip on my lifeline.


  1. Wow! What a story! I was a little stunned when you told me your lifeline cracked. You handled it better than I did, telling me, “These things happen…” and later I was able to add, in my mind, “…and that’s why we all need AppleCare+!” SMILE!

    I so glad Apple jus swapped you out a new iPhone. So much easier all around. Now you know there’s no internal, residue, damage from the drop because the phone is now all new.

      1. I guess if you’re going to drop something brand-new, it’s best to do it right at the start of the new product cycle instead of at the end. Ha!

  2. Jana,

    I, too, suffer from phone dropping syndrome. That is why I bought the case that I did (the Otterbox) which seems pricey but thankfully has saved my phone from breaking on a number of fairly hard drops. I strongly recommend it to anyone who tends to have such good luck as we!

      1. Janna,

        The one I have is good for up to six feet of water, being dropped up to 10 feet, and more but it bulks up the phone a bit. They just released a new one which is much thinner and is still completely waterproof and can be dropped six feet safely (not to say that you should drop it to make sure!) 🙂

        1. I definitely don’t want something bulky. I bet many case manufacturers are having a cow that the gold iPhone is so popular. Anybody who buys one is buying it for the gold color and putting it in a case isn’t going to show off that color. I also wonder if all the cases work with Touch ID.

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