Jim recently got the OnePlus 9. He likes the camera but misses the Pixel camera. Leo says that there's something in the Pixel camera software that gives it the edge. But watch out for the Google Pixel 6, it's going to be a really great upgrade.
Gary bought a refurbished laptop, and it stopped working after the 90-day warranty. So he's having to get a new one. Leo says that the new MacBook Air is probably Gary's best option: very reliable, or get a Chromebook.
Spenser has an old white MacBook that he uses to tether to his Nikon cameras and take pictures of his astronomy. There's a solar eclipse coming in 2024, and he wants to know if he can use it even though it's over 10 years old now. Leo says it may be better to see if there's a new version of the software used on a newer Mac. Unfortunately, the old version of the software won't work on modern macs because Apple stopped supporting 32-bit applications. So you'd need a newer version of the software.
Bobby needs to replace the hard drive for his HP Elite. But he's considering getting a refurbished replacement instead since it'll cost $160 to replace the drive. Leo says that it largely depends on how the law works for refurbished in Bobby's state. In California, it's illegal to sell an open box return as "new." So they are listed as refurbished, and if bought from an original manufacturer, it'll come with a warranty. So that's a good deal since it'll save a few hundred dollars.
Jody has a ten-year-old iMac. He saw an ad for a 21.5" iMac for $375 refurbished. Leo says that it's always best to buy refurbished directly from Apple. It may cost a little more, but the peace of mind is better. This sounds like a big corporation dumped a bunch of older machines onto Amazon Renewed for sale. Sounds like a good price, though. It really comes down to what year it is, what OS version it's using, and if it can be updated. A Snow Leopard Mac, for instance, can't be updated to Lion. So it's likely a 2010 machine.
Irwin has been using a flip phone for most of his life, but now he is starting to text and texting is a royal hassle on a flip phone. Leo says yes it is! What is the simplest option for him? He doesn't need the latest and greatest. A few apps. Maybe the occasional photo. Leo says that the iPhone is a great first smartphone. Android phones tend to be cheaper, but you want to get a phone that is constantly updated, so you want to be sure your carrier will update regularly. For Android, the Motorola Moto G6 or G7 is a great affordable option. $200-400.
Aaron broke his iPad and wants to know if it's worth repairing. Leo says probably not, and they're not really designed to be fixed. But they're getting cheaper all the time, so it's probably better to just buy a new one. Keep an eye out for sales, because consumers can get a new iPad for around $300.
Scott would like to update his MacBook Pro, but he can't afford a high priced Mac. What are his options to save some money? Leo says that the MacBook Air is the least expensive at $999, but it hasn't been updated in years, and it has the lowest quality screen Apple sells. So Leo would recommend going to the Apple Store and see if he can live with it. His other choice would be the MacBook "escape," a 13" model without the Touch Bar. It wasn't updated from the most recent update, but it's very portable. The new MacBook Pros are only about $500 more than the escape.
Don wants to know if buying a refurbished iPad is OK. Leo says if it's from the manufacturer, then yes. Especially with Apple, who won't sell something unless it's perfect. And odds are, the refurbished item is simply a model that has been returned. It'll also have a new warranty as well. But Leo says he may want to wait a few weeks because Apple is about to announce new iPads and iPhones for the fall holiday shopping season. That will mean the current models will drop in price. And 64GB is plenty for internal storage.
Bob bought a Samsung Galaxy S9 and he thinks it's too large for his hand. Leo says that larger phones are the future, as people prefer a larger screen to hand comfort. Bob also has hundreds of contacts on his phone that aren't his after he synced it. Leo says it's possible that AT&T or Samsung sold Bob a phone that was returned and hadn't wiped it before doing so. But if they sealed it up to make it look new, that's against the law.