Before making the trek to an Apple Store, Johns Hopkins employees should keep in mind they have an option that's convenient to work—and often cheaper.
Located on the Homewood campus, the Johns Hopkins Technology Store serves as an Apple campus reseller, offering all the latest Mac computers, tablets, and accessories. The shop, part of the Johns Hopkins Technology Center, also provides walk-in service and repair assistance on all products under warranty, with a plan to cover out-of-warranty products in the near future.
But the tech store—which operates five days a week in the lower level of Garland Hall—isn't exclusively Apple-oriented. Repair technicians are certified to work on Dell and HP computers in addition to Macs. And the shop sells a variety of other tech products, like GoPros, Microsoft tablets, headphones, flash drives, printers, and laptop and phone accessories.
For employees' tech needs at work (for example, an office computer), the store helps individual departments at Hopkins arrange those purchases. It serves not only the university but also the hospital and health system, with a messenger service offering deliveries and support to sites beyond Homewood.
The perks awaiting employees include:
Sales and Discounts
For all products, Apple and otherwise, the store strives to keep prices lower than normal retail, according to the Technology Center supervisor Robert Byrd.
Apple laptops and desktops are subject to the company's educational discount, which cuts prices by around $100, Byrd says, and the tech store is able to offer an additional 3 percent discount on top of that. For iPads, the extended store discount is generally $10 to $20 off the pricing at a regular Apple Store, Byrd says. Right now, staff and faculty can save an extra $50 on all in-stock Mac purchases; the discount applies to both personal and departmental purchases. The sale ends May 27 or while supplies last.
The store occasionally hosts "yard sales" on used equipment, either cycling out its own demo models or helping various departments or labs do so. Announcements are made in advance on Facebook.
• Though the store itself doesn't sell HP and Dell computers, it guides employees online to affiliate sites that can apply the educational discount to their purchases. (See the "HP Portal" and "Dell Portal" sections of the store's inventory website for further information).)
Repairs and Service
For laptop and desktop computers (both Macs and PCs) under warranty, a customer can walk in for repairs and service. When it's necessary to leave a computer at the store for a few days, the store offers a loaner computer for the interim (note: a normal Apple Store does not).
Starting in fall semester 2016, the store will roll out a pilot program to offer repairs for out-of-warranty computers.
Training and Education
Technicians can provide one-on-one computer or iPad training sessions on topics of a customer's choice, such as switching from PC to Mac. You can arrange these sessions by walking into the store, by emailing email@example.com, or by calling 410-516-0448. The training can take place either in the store or at an employee's workplace.
The store invites IT professionals from across the university and health system to meet up monthly for educational sessions run by an Apple speaker. The topics, which change each month, are meant to keep participants up-to-date with the latest Apple products and technologies. Schedules are announced in advance on Facebook.
The tech store also can help arrange for departments or groups at Hopkins to schedule a speaker from Apple to come in to address a particular technology topic of interest.
The Johns Hopkins Technology Store is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, on the lower level of Homewood's Garland Hall (Room 001). Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 410-516-0448 for more information.