Gadget Geeks is Printers Row newest retailer, and the South Loop’s first “tech boutique.” A Chicago native and recent Harvard graduate, Kelly Motley, Vice President of Marketing and Brand Management, picked the South Loop because she, like a lot of residents, noticed that there isn’t much in the way of technology shops or computer repair places – so she decided to open a store that does both. While the focus is mainly on Apple and Samsung products – the South Loop is home to a lot of college students, after all, and the iPhone and Galaxy products are very popular with them – she says that their repair technicians will do a free diagnosis on any other product. The store’s in-house repair technician has 15 years of experience.
Gadget Geeks’ focus is mainly on accessories and repairs, but Motley aims for the store to become a go-to place for students and residents to hang out. There are free charging stations, as well as store iPads for people to come in and use, and free wi-fi. Motley is also gunning to get a free charging station for outside the store, to attract new customers. The location—in the Transportation Building on Dearborn Street, and across the street from Flaco’s Tacos and Hackney’s—seems to be prime for attracting both longtime South Loop residents and newer, younger students.
There are lots of fun accessories at Gadget Geeks, from retro GameBoy cases to portable chargers called Juicebars (which are so popular that they were completely sold out when I visited the store). One of the most useful things I saw was a USB board to charge a computer, your phone, with a built-in cup holder.
Motley runs the store’s Twitter feed, which is a lively mix of Gadget Geeks promotions—there’s one on now, which is 10% off everything in the store, including repairs—and curated tech news. “There’s a lot of information that’s out there,” Motley says, “about how to safeguard your phones and laptops and iPads and cool, quirky accessories – it’s important for us, and I think for everyone to stay up on the latest trends. There’s something out there for everybody.”
620 S. Dearborn Street