I personally talk to at least a dozen people each week who are not aware of the difference between Apple service certification and Apple service authorization. Unfortunately, most of these individuals are calling or walking in to our service center because they just had a bad service experience. It's important to know the difference between certification and authorization, otherwise there is a pretty big chance of an unpleasant surprise. Imagine hiring a certified consultant to work on a computer problem that looks like software, only to find out that it's actually hardware and software they can't repair it and have to refer you to TechRoom or an Apple Store Genius Bar - but they still hand you a bill for their time.
Apple service certification, like any other certification (e.g. Apple ACMT, CompTIA A+, Microsoft MCTS) is a way for an individual to prove to a potential employer, to clients they serve, and to their peers and colleagues that they are qualified to work with the technology. Certification is demonstration of achieving the minimum required knowledge required to begin practicing. Think of it as similar to graduating from medical school. Graduating alone doesn't necessarily mean you're a good doctor; it just means one has the qualification to begin practicing. How does this relate to Mac owners? Being certified does not authorize a technician to perform AppleCare and hardware related work on a Mac, unless they are employed by an Apple Authorized Service Provider.
Apple service authorization is completely different. It's Apple's way of identifying organizations who have demonstrated business, technical and operational requirements are met in order to deliver a customer experience that meets and ideally exceeds Apple's standards. Significant commercial insurance requirements must be met. This protects customers. Standards of operational and technical performance must be met. This again protects customers and ensures they can be served at the standards that Apple expects from their service providers.
TechRoom technicians are Apple Certified (in addition to the many other certifications they hold, including Microsoft, A+ and more). And our employees are also authorized to perform both in-warranty and out of warranty repairs, hardware and software because TechRoom is a 10-year old company that is authorized by Apple to perform in-warranty and out of warranty service.
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p.s. The platforms I am referring to by the way are Apple, Windows and Google.