My precious iPhone had been malfunctioning for the past few days leaving me with a black screen. It was still operating but having a dead screen means you have a smartphone that functions like a home receiver from the 90s. Touchscreens need illumination and Siri’s voice dialing can only go so far; she called my friend in England by mistake. My tech expert friend told me about an iPhone guru in Sin el Fil so off we went. In a side street in Horsh Tabet is Amer & Raed, a sales and repair shop specializing in Apple products.
Upon entering the shop, Raed, a George Khabbaz doppleganger, sat behind a Macbook surrounded by the remains of iPhones and other wrapped patients (sick phones are rubber-band-wrapped in white paper containing the contact info of the owner). I handed him the phone and he dissected it with ease. He carefully removed the chips and pieces, stripping it down on the table in front of him. It was like watching a cardiologist behind an operating table. He used nail pliers to pinch circuits and sprayed a toothbrush with cleaning fluid to wipe away residue – the same residue left from months before when my phone took a dive in my Nescafe. He has a microscope that he uses to inspect the nanobits that come together to create this device that we are all addicted to. Once he figures out the problem, he re-fuses circuits using needles that look like phone defibrillator pads. I had the urge to yell out “clear” during the revival.
At one point, an older man came in with his daughter’s iPhone that had drowned in water. The phrases that were used were as if they were discussing a patient that needed surgery. He asked if it could be saved to which Raed replied, “inshallah kheir.” We asked what we should do if we ever dropped our babies in water after hours. This is how we learned that Raed takes emergency calls too; saying he’d come in and open in the middle of the night if necessary.
The good thing about Amer & Raed is that you actually watch them try to figure out what’s wrong with your phone. Other places I’ve been to jump into how much it’s going to cost and try to sell you a newer model instead – before they’ve even looked at what could actually be wrong. Besides that, they overcharge for slow work that has poor results. Raed fixed my phone in under 30 minutes, in front of me, and didn’t over charge. In fact, he didn’t charge at all. Ma btehrouz. (it’s not necessary)
Now that’s a doctor who isn’t working for the paycheck. That’s a doc who’s saving lives.
How to get there: the road that heads towards the Mkalles roundabout disaster [on the same road where Marky’s is] take a right where the big black globe sign is and Amer & Raed will be up ahead on your left.
Contact them at +961 1 494 303