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Apple is the king of consumer laptop tech support, and the company added to its repertoire in the past year. In addition to answering questions via social media, live online chats, its support app and phone calls, the company began posting tutorials to a YouTube channel in November 2017. These options flank the company's existing Genius Bar, which still stands out as one of the few ways users can get in-person support directly from a laptop-maker.
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Before rolling out the paid chat support, Apple had to develop a new web payment system that would allow it to accept payments through chat and keep user info secure when transferred between support agents, according to our sources. Using the new web payment system, we’re told Apple plans to offer the ability to set up hardware repairs and replacements that require a hold on a credit card or pay per incident fee via chat support. Rather than having to call in, users will be sent a link that’s live for 24 hours in order to complete the payment.