Originally Posted by Inigo Montoya
Little mom-n-pop computer stores that are only open 9 - 5 when most people are at work, and from 12-4 on Saturdays; and who charge like $60-$80/hr to diagnose & repair. I can't even begin to identify who their market is, let alone how it can be big enough to provide sufficient income to keep the lights on. If my 3 year old PC breaks down I make a choice: pay $250 to diagnose and maybe repair my machine so I can have my 3 year old technology back, or spring for $500 and get a new magic box with ALL new parts.
I guess their main competition is Geek Squad, and geeky relatives. I agree, I totally don't understand the desire to spend money to revive older computers (excluding data recovery). But based on threads on this board, and plenty of in person interactions (I'm the geeky relative, friend, employee...) lots of people would rather struggle along with their 5 year old computer than change to something new. I guess the inverse of that are my encounters with people who throw away perfectly good hardware because of software problems, or because the still under warranty hardware has a problem.
That being said, I can see the place for a competent, well run computer repair company. They probably also do custom builds, and stuff like that.
As others have said, the number of places that sell mobile phones boggles me. Walking through a regular mall or strip mall brings up independent stores, carrier stores, electronic stores, department stores, wholesale warehouses, etc. who all sell mobile phones. Can the industry really support that many sales outlets?