Saving hundreds of dollars -- using an iPad 2!

A good friend of mine, through the judicious use of his iPad 2, pretty much paid for the device last week. I thought his story was so cool that I want to share it with you.

My friend Ron needed some repairs made to his vehicle, after having it towed to the dealership when it wouldn't start that morning. After waiting for the mechanic to complete his diagnostics and assessment, he was informed that the estimate for all materials & labor came to $1750.00. Whew!!

So Ron used his 3G iPad to take a photograph of the written estimate. Then he used the White Pages app to locate several other repair shops in the area. Using that information, he sent the estimate as a FAX (using the email-to-FAX service) to those shops, requesting they respond with a more competitive estimate of the work required.

Within 20 minutes, Ron had received quotes from two other locations via his iPad that were $500-600 cheaper than the dealership. Ron showed them to the service manager saying, "Over the years, I have done all my business with you but your estimate is just too high. I hope you can make an accommodation given these quotes I have so that I can continue bringing my vehicle here for service."

It took about 15 minutes for the service manager to come back to Ron with an adjusted estimate that came in at $1100 -- beating the lowest quote from the other shops.

It just goes to show how having a highly functional and versatile tablet device like the iPad can make a difference in your everyday lives. And the $600 savings? Well, I think Ron is treating himself to a few new tech gadgets, of course!

Could this have been done with a laptop? Certainly! But in the time it takes just to boot up a laptop, get the webcam ready, and google the repairs shops, the iPad would have already completed those tasks (and you'd be playing Angry Birds while waiting for the responses).

You can't beat having a portable, powerful, and magical device like the iPad at the ready. It's all that, and has the potential to be even more given the vast number of apps available and the creativity of the one who wields it!

I am an iPad wielder. Ron is an iPad wielder. Do YOU have what it takes? :)