Fix a cracked iPad screen

Bro­ken your iPad’s screen? Whether it’s cracked or smashed Lewis Pain­ter re­veals your op­tions

iPad&iPhone user - - CONTENTS -

Smash­ing the screen on your iPad (or iPhone or iPod, for that mat­ter) has got to be one of the big­gest First World prob­lems. You drop your beloved phone or tablet, reach down and pick it up – of course it landed screen down – and in­spect the dam­age, only to have your worst fears con­firmed. The screen is shat­tered.

Well, chin up. It’s bad, but it’s not dis­as­trous. You have op­tions. Here we round up the five best ways of re­pair­ing a dam­aged iPhone or iPad dis­play, and ex­plain the pros and cons of each.

Get Ap­ple to re­pair it

Ap­ple will come to the res­cue and re­pair your cracked screen, but it won’t do this for free, even

if you’re still in the war­ranty pe­riod as ac­ci­den­tal dam­age isn’t cov­ered by the stan­dard war­ranty.

If you went the ex­tra mile and paid for Ap­pleCare+, then the cost won’t be too high. Ap­pleCare+ in­cludes re­pairs for up to two cases of ac­ci­den­tal dam­age. But there’s still an ex­cess fee. While it used to cost users £55 for iPhone SE, 5c, 5s, 6 iPhone 6 Plus, £79 for 6s and 6s Plus and £39 for all mod­els of iPad, Ap­ple has since up­dated its war­ranty. Now, users need to pay £25 to fix their iPhone dis­play no mat­ter what model it is, with all other re­pairs cost­ing a flat rate of £79.

As­sum­ing you haven’t got Ap­pleCare+, the cost of your screen re­pair will be higher. It’s best to get in touch with Ap­ple and see what they’d charge in your case, but the com­pany quotes the fol­low­ing prices for screen re­pairs on iPads not cov­ered by Ap­pleCare:

iPad mini or mini 2: £156.44 iPad 1, 2 or Air 1: £196.44 iPad 3, 4, mini 3, mini 4 or Air 2: £236.44 9.7in iPad Pro: £316.44 12.9in iPad Pro: £506.44

The non-Ap­pleCare costs for iPhone screen re­pairs, mean­while, are:

iPhone 7 Plus, 6s Plus, 6 Plus: £146.44 iPhone 7, 6s, SE, 6, 5s, 5c, 5: £126.44

Go to a high-street re­tailer

The high street. The one-stop shop for all your needs - in­clud­ing iPhone or iPad screen re­pairs.

The high street is where most of us will go when we break our phone or tablet screen be­cause, gen­er­ally speak­ing, peo­ple like the per­sonal touch, which is some­thing you tend not to get when us­ing on­line re­pair ser­vices. An­other point for the ‘high street ver­sus on­line’ ar­gu­ment is that if any­thing goes wrong with a high-street re­pair then you know where to go to com­plain (un­like with most on­line ser­vices).

High-street chain Timp­sons (timp­ has no­ticed the grow­ing de­mand for a lo­cal re­pair ser­vice and have added screen re­pair ser­vices at a num­ber of stores – last year they told us that 412 of their 1,409 stores of­fer this ser­vice. To avoid dis­ap­point­ment we strongly rec­om­mend ei­ther call­ing your lo­cal branch to see if they can help, or us­ing the firm’s store lo­ca­tor with the fil­ter set to ‘Phone and Tablet Re­pairs’.

This should be a far cheaper op­tion than Ap­ple. We’ve been quoted a pretty rea­son­able £49.99 for older iPhone mod­els, ris­ing to around £80- to £90 for newer phones; the ser­vice starts at £39.99. Speak to Timp­sons and get a quote for your de­vice. The firm says it can re­pair screens on all mod­els of iPad and iPhone.

Screen re­pairs on iPhones should be car­ried out the same day, but Timp­sons warns that tablet re­pairs take longer: seven days. In both cases there may be ad­di­tional de­lays if the staff have to or­der in a part, but we imag­ine that Ap­ple de­vices are suf­fi­ciently main­stream that this would be un­usual.

Timp­sons isn’t the only high street chain to of­fer iPhone screen re­pairs though, as Geek Squad (found within cer­tain Car­phone Ware­house stores)

also of­fer Ap­ple cer­ti­fied screen re­pairs, al­though only for the iPhone 5s, 6 and 6s. The com­pany of­fers stan­dard screen re­place­ments for £89, but that’s not all – as a fully ap­proved iPhone re­pair provider, Geek Squad can carry out any war­ranty re­pairs just like the Ap­ple Store, com­pletely free of charge. The com­pany only uses gen­uine Ap­ple parts, mean­ing your iPhone war­ranty won’t be­come void by us­ing the ser­vice, and the com­pany pro­vides all cus­tomers with a 90-day guar­an­tee fol­low­ing any re­pairs.

The catch? It’s only avail­able in a hand­ful of stores at this time: Birm­ing­ham, Bris­tol, Cen­tral London, Glas­gow, Leeds, Southamp­ton and Strat­ford. Those in­ter­ested should head straight into store, no ap­point­ment re­quired.

Down sides of high-street screen re­pairs

High-street re­tail­ers are an ob­vi­ous op­tion, and Timp­sons is a well-known brand, but what of the

lesser known high-street shops promis­ing to fix your iPhone? Us­ing a high-street re­tailer could be a risky process be­cause when you leave the store, you don’t know who’s han­dling your iPhone or what they’re do­ing to it.

Peo­ple like to keep their pri­vate lives pri­vate – and what is at the cen­tre of most peo­ple’s lives? Smart­phones. From email to texts to pho­tos, our dig­i­tal world re­volves pri­mar­ily around smart­phones. When you take your iPhone to a high­street re­tailer, you’re hand­ing over your cen­tral hub, so to speak, and there’s a small risk that your data could be browsed and even re­motely stored. A lack of se­cu­rity reg­u­la­tion in smaller, in­de­pen­dent shops could be risky, espe­cially for busi­ness users.

Re­place­ment screen parts are fairly easy to come across and can be bought fairly cheaply on­line. The is­sue with this is that cheap screens and parts seem to have a ten­dency to break more of­ten than of­fi­cial Ap­ple parts. What does that re­sult in? More trips to the shop to get it re­paired and more money spent. If a high-street re­tailer charges as lit­tle as £40 to re­place an iPhone 6s screen, say, you should start ques­tion­ing how that’s pos­si­ble.

Send your de­vice to an on­line re­pair ser­vice

The next op­tion to con­sider is an on­line re­pair ser­vice, such as MendMyi ( Such busi­nesses are be­com­ing ever more pop­u­lar, with peo­ple be­com­ing too busy to take a dam­aged iPad or iPhone to a shop them­selves. MendMyi have be­come a house­hold name for UK iDe­vice re­pairs and cus­tomi­sa­tion over the past few

years – even cus­tomis­ing Stephen Fry’s iPhone with their Colour Lab ser­vice.

With MendMyi be­ing a pri­mar­ily on­line ser­vice, you have to rely on the postal ser­vice. Peo­ple are of­ten wary about send­ing their phone off in the post to a com­pany that they’ve found on­line. What if it breaks? MendMyi of­fer an ad­di­tional ‘Ex­press Pickup’ ser­vice that in­sures your iPhone in tran­sit. MendMyi is very ac­tive on so­cial me­dia and you can chat to the guys on Twit­ter be­fore send­ing your phone off, or al­ter­na­tively drop it to one of their branches in Haver­hill, Cam­bridge or Sud­bury.

MendMyi only uses of­fi­cial Ap­ple parts in the re­pair so you can be sure that your screen re­place­ment is gen­uine. The firm also runs a di­ag­nos­tics test on your phone while it’s be­ing re­paired to make sure there’s noth­ing else wrong with it – a great ex­tra that you won’t find with many phone re­pair ser­vices.

So, what’s the down side? When it comes to pric­ing, MendMyi aren’t the cheap­est, while an iPhone 5s screen re­pair costs a rea­son­able £79, an iPhone 6 screen re­pair jumps up to £127 and the iPhone 6s Plus is £359. Ouch. iPad pric­ing is gen­er­ally in the £100 to £150 range, but the most re­cent mod­els are ab­sent – the iPad Air 2 and mini 3 are the most up-to-date iPads on of­fer.

While it may be more ex­pen­sive than com­peti­tors, MendMyi aims to have your phone di­ag­nosed and re­paired within one-to-three days and it is couri­ered back to you shortly af­ter­wards.

An­other on­line re­pair and cus­tomi­sa­tion ser­vice to think about is iS­mash (is­, based in London. Sim­i­larly to MendMyi, you can se­lect the re­pairs you need on their web­site along with your choice of postage, whether it be them send­ing you a ‘Post in Pack’ for £5.99 or you di­rectly or­gan­is­ing a courier. Their pric­ing is also sim­i­lar, with an

iPhone 6 screen re­pair cost­ing a lit­tle less than MendMyi at £99. In­ter­est­ingly, iS­mash only charge £149 for an iPhone 6s Plus screen re­pair – less than half the price of the same ser­vice at MendMyi. Like MendMyi, at time of writ­ing iS­mash hadn’t up­dated its site to in­clude the iPhone SE.

One ad­van­tage of iS­mash, if you’re based in the cap­i­tal, is that the firm has walk-in shops all around London. That means that you can book an ap­point­ment, take your Ap­ple de­vice into store and get it re­paired on the same day.

Get your de­vice re­paired at your home

Some peo­ple can’t – and won’t – wait for days for their iPhone screen to be fixed. What al­ter­na­tives are there? De­pend­ing on your lo­ca­tion, there are com­pa­nies that can come to you and re­pair your phone or tablet. One such com­pany is Re­pairly (re­ – they will come to you any­where in cen­tral London and hope to ex­pand soon. They’ll take your iPhone and re­pair it within two to three hours and bring it right back to you when it’s done.

Re­pairly fixed our iPhone 6s within two hours, and we’ve been us­ing it for months since with ab­so­lutely no prob­lems. Com­mu­ni­ca­tion and emails were great fun and the friendly Re­pairly rep­re­sen­ta­tive ar­rived on a push scooter with a padded box ready to whisk our iPhone away. It was fast and bril­liantly has­tle-free if a lit­tle more ex­pen­sive than go­ing to some high-street op­tions.

An al­ter­na­tive is Phone Dudes. Amaz­ingly, Phone Dudes claim that once the en­gi­neer ar­rives, your iPhone will be ready to use again within just 10 min­utes. That means that you don’t have to be

away from your iPhone for too long and it de­stroys any is­sues with phone se­cu­rity – the re­pair is done in front of you. The down­side is that the com­pany can’t yet fix Ap­ple’s new­est phones and it doesn’t of­fer fixes for iPads or lap­tops.

DIY re­pairs

If your screen dam­age is more cos­metic than any­thing, there are other DIY op­tions avail­able. With the in­ter­net be­ing the in­ter­net, there are a va­ri­ety of home reme­dies for scratches (not cracks) on your screen – in­clud­ing, weirdly enough, tooth­paste. Other op­tions in­clude car scratch re­moval creams, such as the 3M Scratch and Swirl re­mover that ap­par­ently works won­ders on a scratched screen. Make sure that all ports are sealed be­fore at­tempt­ing to use creams, as you don’t want to add liq­uid dam­age to your list of prob­lems.

There’s one more op­tion, but it’s not for the faint-hearted. iFixit ( pro­vides tu­to­ri­als on how to re­pair any part of any iPad (and sim­i­lar articles for the iPhone). They give clear and easy-to-fol­low steps with high-res­o­lu­tion im­ages high­light­ing ex­actly what you need to do. They’re also a one-stop shop – once you’ve found the tu­to­rial you need, you can buy all the parts di­rectly from them, mak­ing it far less likely that you’ll buy the wrong parts.

Do pay at­ten­tion to the dif­fi­culty rat­ing of each tu­to­rial, how­ever. You need to be fairly con­fi­dent with your tech­ni­cal abil­ity, as any unau­tho­rised re­pairs of your iPhone will void the war­ranty and Ap­ple won’t touch it.

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