AppleCare+ vs. SquareTrade

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AppleCare+ vs. SquareTrade

Reviews

SquareTrade fares better than AppleCare+ in customer reviews and other ratings. SquareTrade gets 4.5/5 stars on Apple’s AppStore, 4.9/5 on Google Reviews, 4.7/5 on Amazon, and an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. AppleCare+ gets 4/5 stars on Amazon and only 3/5 stars on Epinions. AppleCare+ is not rated by the Better Business Bureau, however, Apple is a well-known and reputable corporation.

SquareTrade Is Better

SquareTrade is the better protection plan. Although they charge $1 more for the deductible, SquareTrade allows 4 incidents of accidental damage. That’s twice as many as AppleCare+. Furthermore, they will replace your iPhone the next day or allow you to take it to the Apple store. SquareTrade also gives you a better refund if you cancel. They don’t charge a cancellation fee. This makes the 3 year plan more appealing. For all these reasons and their excellent customer support, SquareTrade has better reviews. It’s not easy to beat Apple, and AppleCare+ is a good option, however SquareTrade is clearly the better choice.

AppleCare+ is only recommended if you need the phone support and protection for the included iPhone accessories (headphones and charger). Keep in mind, you can always bring your iPhone to an Apple store to get help. The headphones and charger are inexpensive. If Fido chews up your headphones, will you really pay the $49 deductible to replace them? These benefits are not compelling.

Extended Warranty Worth It?

Extended warranties are not for everyone. If you are accident prone, active, and take your device everywhere, it’s a good option. If you have small children who use your iPhone to play games, it’s a great idea. Pets are also known to destroy electronic gadgets. Both AppleCare+ and SquareTrade cover these types of damages. You’re covered no matter who damages your iPhone.

The cost of a 2 year warranty and 1 incident is about $150. Compare that to the cost of replacing your iPhone — $229. It’s possible to damage the device multiple times. A manufacturing defect could surface after the 1 year limited warranty expires. There’s so many things that could go wrong. An extended warranty gives you peace of mind. You can also forgo wrapping your iPhone in a case, preserving its compact form factor.

Of course, if the device is dropped and the screen is broken, the entire device won’t need to be replaced. That said, dropping a device could weaken other components. If you break your screen, an extended warranty provider will send you a replacement. This may be a refurbished model. When you send yours in, they will fix it, test it, and send it to someone else.

I dropped my iPhone once, but it wasn’t damaged. The iPhone is a very rugged device. However, it depends on the height of the fall, how it falls, and the surface it contacts. I’m not much of a butterfingers, but I was wiping fingerprints off my iPhone and it slipped. These things happen. Since people tend to take their phones just about everywhere, it makes sense to get an extended warranty.

I wouldn’t get coverage for my iPad or Mac. Some people may take their iPad or MacBook with them wherever they go. SquareTrade’s iPad plans are surprisingly less expensive than the iPhone warranty, but insuring a MacBook is quite expensive. Depending on the price, it can be over $300 for 2 years of coverage. The cost of replacement or repair will almost always be more than the cost of coverage. I recommend SquareTrade for iPhones, but iPad and notebooks might not be exposed to potential accidents. The latter require coverage depending on how you use them. I’m going to buy a SquareTrade plan for my next iPhone.

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2 comments

  1. Getting ready to cancel my Squaretrade warranty on my iPhone 6s. I started a claim and it stated that full replacement may not be covered. So that means that only cracked screens are basically what you can expect to be covered. You’ll pay a $99 deductible for a cracked screen.

    Starting to think the warranty isn’t worth it.

    1. I would only recommend the extended warranties for those who are accident prone or people who absolutely cannot go one day without an iPhone. Consumer Reports also said that these extended warranties aren’t worth it. I wrote this article, and I do think SquareTrade is better than AppleCare+. That said, I don’t use either service. If you total your iPhone, chances are your carrier can replace it for less than $300. While that’s expensive, they typically don’t charge the full retail value for a replacement. If you break the screen, you can usually get it fixed for around $100. The main benefit is that you get up and running right away.

      In general, extended warranties are a rip off. The only one I bought was for my car. It was $2000 and extended the warranty to cover 10 years. The original warranty was 3 years. It also gives me free roadside assistance. Even that is probably a rip off, but it gives me peace of mind.

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