More than One Way to Skin an iPhone

A dermatology clinic in Tyler, Texas, not far from Dallas, has been fully ushered into the digital age: the staff totes iPads around the office to manage workflows and have patients’ electronic health records accessible at the bedside. Bryan Clarke is a medical assistant at Dermatology Associates of Tyler. “I feel like it’s the intersection of medicine and technology,” he explains, “so I fit right in there”—because in addition to being a medical assistant, Bryan is a gadget repair technician in his off hours.

Bryan doing a phone repair at iGadget Repair Services

Dermatology and phone repair might seem worlds apart, but Bryan says they’re not all that different: “I get to help people with both. Repair their skin and repair their gadgets.” Plus, he likes tools. Whether he’s performing a biopsy with a medical instrument or opening an iPod with an iSesamo, it’s still just fixing stuff with fancy tools.

All day, everywhere he goes, his eyes are peeled for broken gadgets. When Bryan sees someone pull a cell phone-shaped brick of broken glass out of a pocket, he says, “Hey, I can help with that.” He gets a lot of business from patients who carry around broken devices. Most of his other customers hear about him through friends, coworkers, or family, though he’s beginning to advertise iGadget Repair Services more widely. He’s recently launched a website, bought an advertising magnet for his car, and started passing out business cards “like a madman.”

Why does he like iFixit? He loves the community—people who “love to see you successfully repair whatever it is that is on your operating table.” We love you too, Bryan. Just keep that soldering iron away from the weird-looking mole on my neck.

This is the fourth in a series of posts profiling people who have started small repair businesses with iFixit tools. Want more stories like this? Check out Owen Cunneely of TennesseeJonathan Edwards of Pennsylvania, and Darren Vance of Queensland, Australia.