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Old Oct 5, 2010, 10:33 PM   #1
MrXiro
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Best Buy's Extended Warranty, Apple Care or Neither for new iPod Touch 4?

Ok I'm usually quite the advocate for extended warranties... but since Best Buy has severely changed theirs I'm not so sure anymore... I recently got the new 4th Gen iPod Touch 8gb as a replacement for my first gen which I got a month after release with a 3 year extended warranty.

Best Buy's old warranty stated that they would give you a brand new iPod or the equivalent in credit to spend in the store for any issues short of accidental and physical damage. So wear and tear, battery life etc. The new change which started, I heard, with the 3rd Gen iPod Touch is that they replace your iPod Touch with a refurbished one from somewhere. I don't know if it's directly from apple or from Best Buy's own refurbishing center. What kind of pissed me off was they changed the plan on me to the new one. Even though that was not the deal when it was sold to me. I have a deep understanding of the old plan since I worked for Best Buy for 3 years. Anyway... I got really lucky. They lost my refurbed iPod in the mail and I was without one for 3 and a half weeks when they promised me a new one in 5 days. So I was able to pick up the newest one since they gave me the credit for it.

That said my first Gen iPod still worked great it was just that the battery life was down to about 11 hours on a full charge as opposed to the original advertised like 25 or whatever it was. Not shabby but I figured since I paid for the service plan I wanted to take advantage of since it expired Oct 4th.

The question is... I'm not too happy with this new warranty plan that Best Buy is offering. But it IS cheaper than AppleCare... and now is pretty much on par with AppleCare as far as coverage.

What do you all think? Get the Best Buy Warranty? AppleCare? Or just say F-it and go with Neither?

Thanks.

Last edited by MrXiro; Oct 6, 2010 at 04:57 PM.
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Old Oct 5, 2010, 11:28 PM   #2
r0k
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I picked up a free iPod Touch when I bought a Macbook Pro for my son when he went to college last year. It broke during the year and while I had to fight with Apple to get it replaced, they took care of it. Later, they asked me if I wanted to buy AppleCare. I did not. The reason is I consider the iPod Touch to be a short life device. Mine only lasted me a year and I was ready to either upgrade to 4th gen or get an iPhone 4. I got the iPhone 4.

If you plan to keep your Touch longer, you might consider AppleCare but keep in mind, it is not insurance. Most of what happens to iPods is physical damage. If you crack the screen, you will have to pay. If it falls in the toilet, you will have to pay. I have heard squaretrade offers a damage warranty but I've never considered it. So if you plan to keep your 'Touch a year or less, don't bother with AppleCare. If you plan to keep it longer, you might consider AppleCare. As for the BestBuy warranty, I would read it carefully. Chances are it doesn't cover accidental damage any more than AppleCare. It's cheaper for a reason. If you need to talk to Apple, you will get through to somebody who is not an idiot within minutes. Good luck with Dell or Best Buy or SquareTrade or whoever. For me that alone is worth the premium price for AppleCare. BTW, I should also mention that AppleCare on an iPod is not like AppleCare on a Computer. I think it only gets you a total of two years from purchase. So you are basically paying for unlimited phone support beyond the normal 90 day cutoff as well as warranty beyond the 1 year cutoff but the most you get is 2 years total.

So what you need to ask yourself is this. Do you feel lucky? Well do ya? If you do then don't bother with any add on warranty.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 12:19 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r0k View Post
I picked up a free iPod Touch when I bought a Macbook Pro for my son when he went to college last year. It broke during the year and while I had to fight with Apple to get it replaced, they took care of it. Later, they asked me if I wanted to buy AppleCare. I did not. The reason is I consider the iPod Touch to be a short life device. Mine only lasted me a year and I was ready to either upgrade to 4th gen or get an iPhone 4. I got the iPhone 4.

If you plan to keep your Touch longer, you might consider AppleCare but keep in mind, it is not insurance. Most of what happens to iPods is physical damage. If you crack the screen, you will have to pay. If it falls in the toilet, you will have to pay. I have heard squaretrade offers a damage warranty but I've never considered it. So if you plan to keep your 'Touch a year or less, don't bother with AppleCare. If you plan to keep it longer, you might consider AppleCare. As for the BestBuy warranty, I would read it carefully. Chances are it doesn't cover accidental damage any more than AppleCare. It's cheaper for a reason. If you need to talk to Apple, you will get through to somebody who is not an idiot within minutes. Good luck with Dell or Best Buy or SquareTrade or whoever. For me that alone is worth the premium price for AppleCare. BTW, I should also mention that AppleCare on an iPod is not like AppleCare on a Computer. I think it only gets you a total of two years from purchase. So you are basically paying for unlimited phone support beyond the normal 90 day cutoff as well as warranty beyond the 1 year cutoff but the most you get is 2 years total.

So what you need to ask yourself is this. Do you feel lucky? Well do ya? If you do then don't bother with any add on warranty.

As an employee of Futureshop (owned by best buy) I can tell you the Product plan you are offered by best buy works out to be alot better value for money. From what i read today (i'm still in training) it covers alot more for a cheaper price. go in-store and ask to speak to someone about it, providing you find someone who knows about the plan, they will be able to explain to you the benefits over apples plan.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 12:28 AM   #4
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I currently work at Best Buy and I do know about the new changes to the service plan on the ipods. There are now two different versions of them for the ipods, one is a regular service plan that covers manufacturers defects for 2 years from the date of purchase and also a 2 year accidental service plan. Obviously the mfg covers defects just like apple will do but for some additional time. The 2 year accidental will cover that plus accidental damage and handling, meaning cracked screens, water damage and power surges. I dont know pricing on these and I believe that it does vary slightly depending on the size of the ipod itself. Im not that well versed on applecare since i have yet to purchase it on any of my apple devices. I know that the service plan from best buy is setup as what they call a "rapid exchange." You drop it off to the geek squad and we send it out and within a few days, at my store its an average of 3-5, and within that timeframe another ipod will be delivered from a best buy service center. It is a refurbished ipod that has all the parts tested by a company and put back as another refurbished unit for another customer, if they meet a certain criteria. What that is I have no idea. They used to be a straight replacement in the store and than we got a contract to repair them and thats why it changed. I am not saying anything negative about applecare nor am I saying that the best buy service plan i better, in my opinion it all comes down to giving the right information to people and letting them decide whats best for them.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 12:37 AM   #5
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I wouldn't buy the extended warranty.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 01:33 AM   #6
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Get a warranty from http://squaretrade.com
It will probably be a lot cheaper, and it covers accidental damage. I somehow got water damage on my iPhone 4, paid $199 plus tax to Apple to do a replacement swap on the spot, and got a check a few days ago from Squaretrade for $211.44.
There is a $50 deductible per claim, but still a better deal than any I know of.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 05:40 AM   #7
MrXiro
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The Rapid exchange is what they told me they wanted to do... This was not the case when I first bought the iPod Touch. I was originally sold the in store swap out for the service plan. So it is THIS Rapid exchange method that has me concerned... I don't like it one bit. Unfortunately for Best Buy and Fortunately for me the Rapid Exchange unit was lost in the mail for nearly 4 weeks and I was offered a new in store model... cause after 3 and a half weeks it's really not "Rapid" any longer. The cheapest plan is 29.99 for a 2 year... but that's just a one year extension. I don't know how much Applecare's is... but I can buy it all the way up til Sept 28th of next year and that is the plus side of it. the most expensive plan is 99.99 for 3 year accidental coverage... but again... I dislike this Rapid Exchange method and not to mention... 100 dollars to cover $230 device and not get a BRAND NEW one just bad business practice on my end. It'd be smarter to put that 100 towards the 199 base model at the time... which in 3 years time will probably be 32gb with a nicer camera, 1.5-2 ghz processor, thin as 3 sheets of loose leaf paper and the a 4 inch screen... I'm joking... but only halfway.

My first gen iPod Touch lasted 3 years and was still kicking pretty good short of the shortened battery life. I used the hell out of it and didn't even have any sort of case on it short of a Best Skins Ever skin.

I'm liking this Square Trade idea... so long as it's a good deal... anyone else ever use Squaretrade?
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 08:24 AM   #8
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To me the 'rapid exchange' seems like it should be 'we send you a 'new' unit while we are waiting for yours to come back' rather than a 'send up yours and we send you another one' or even 'drop off your at the local BB and we'll send you a 'new' one real soon now'...

Rapid exchange sounds too much like 'advanced exchange' that many other companies do. Like HP. I can request advanced exchange and they will ship a new unit or part out next day air and then request that the old/defective part be returned within some time period and all is good...

If you are going to pay for a warranty that most people don't use, the least they could do is try to keep you happy...

Oh, and I usually never buy these contracts on things that are 'disposable' like iPods. Unless they are expen$ive iPods. I do on my iPhone because I depend on it. Getting Applecare or some other coverage for say an iPod Shuffle would be a joke... Even on a Nano would be hard to swallow...
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 10:13 AM   #9
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Personally I would not bother with any extended warranty. When you think about it they make huge profit margins on the warranties. Therefore odds are you will not get the full value out of it. I know people will come up with cases were warranties saved them a big expense.

However in the long run if you take all the money you spend on warranties over a 20 year period and look at the total received repairs. Odds are you will have spent a lot more on warranties than the value they ever returned in repairs.

Take the now defunct CompUSA for example. They made a 70% profit margin on warranties which is not unusual. Even if you use a discount warranty company. Lets assume they are half the price of a store warranty. They would still be making a 40% profit margin on the warranty.

I never buy warranties. Occasionally I do take a hit but it is really quite rare for a device to fail. Most electronics I have bought last well beyond their warranty period before failure. My stereo is 22 years old and has been used nearly every day and still works great. Computers work well beyond obsolescence. Small electronics last much longer than my interest in them. This holds true for appliances and other warranty purchases.

From what I have found items fail most frequently due to defect within the store refund period. Then to a lesser extent within the manufacturers standard warranty. Otherwise most devices continue to function without need of repair until well after an extended warranty period expires.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 11:08 AM   #10
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All extended warranties are strictly not worth the cost because if they were these companies couldn't afford to offer them! They are good for budgeting expenses and protection against unaffordable repair (more likely to occur with say a 17" MacBook Pro!).

I'd just figure if my 2nd Gen iPod Touch, without extended warranty, dies, I'll just buy the latest generation anyway.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 12:42 PM   #11
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I just got a 3 year Square Trade warranty for my daughter's new 32gb Touch. I think it cost me about $60. I have heard good things about it, and figured the accidental coverage would be key for a kid's iPod.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 03:34 PM   #12
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A lot of credit cards provide an extended warranty for free on all purchases. Many people don't know this. I didn't know this about my own card until I checked. It gives me 1 year, starting at the end of the mfr's warranty.

So you might have an extended warranty already (if you use a CC to purchase) for free. It also means purchasing a 3-year warranty is really only 1 year (the third year) because the first year is covered by Apple, and the second by your CC.

Frankly, if my iPod broke somewhere in its third year, I'd rather have the money I spent on the extended warranty to put toward buying a newer model.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 04:44 PM   #13
MosquitoHunter
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A Note on CC warranties

Actually, American Express extends the warranty one year in ADDITION to what you purchase from Best Buy, Apple, etc. I was curious about exactly how that worked, so I called their customer care # and asked. So, for 2-yr Apple Care on an iPod, using an AMEX (I'm not 100% sure with other cards) would get you three years of warranty (Years 1 and 2 through Apple Care and Year 3 through AMEX). They will add one year for up to 5 years total, so if the extended warranty is for 10 years, you're out of luck.

Last edited by MosquitoHunter; Oct 6, 2010 at 04:53 PM.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 04:53 PM   #14
MrXiro
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Originally Posted by MosquitoHunter View Post
Actually, American Express extends the warranty one year in ADDITION to what you purchase from Best Buy, Apple, etc. I was curious about exactly how that worked, so I called their customer care # and asked. So, for Apple Care on an iPod, using an AMEX (I'm not 100% sure with other cards) would get you three years of warranty (Years 1 and 2 through Apple Care and Year 3 through AMEX). They will add one year for up to 5 years total, so if the extended warranty is for 10 years, you're out of luck.
Unfortunately that wouldn't work for my case... since I really only paid 8 dollars for my iPod after the the difference was made up. Even if I HAD used an American Express I'm sure it'd only cover the item to how much I spent and not how much it's worth.

Thanks all I'll go with just NOT getting one then. I mean I keep my stuff in good shape and this Touch won't be used as much as my last one since I now own an iPad as well.
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 05:47 PM   #15
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All extended warranties are strictly not worth the cost because if they were these companies couldn't afford to offer them!
Extended warranties are worth it to individuals who use them and stick with the rules, depending on the cost and the terms on the agreement. People scoop them up at purchase after being caught up in the frenzy and throw away the paperwork, then completely forget about the warranty. I've dealt with many companies many of which are the "send it back and we'll send you a new one but since we don't have that model in stock we'll give you this updated model" type. Brand new, late model Phones, TVs, Apple accessories (rare on the Apple stuff but it still happens) etc, sometimes for minor issues like a tiny broken led.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ActionableMango View Post
A lot of credit cards provide an extended warranty for free on all purchases. Many people don't know this. I didn't know this about my own card until I checked. It gives me 1 year, starting at the end of the mfr's warranty.
CC warranties aren't all gumdrops and puppies. AE is well known for their service, of course, but some vendors have a much more arduous repair process i.e. getting a quote, paying for it out of pocket, then getting reimbursed which might not be that big of a deal for "free", but alot more hassle than simply walking into an Apple Store and receiving a new model on the spot (for Manufacturing defects).
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Old Oct 6, 2010, 06:44 PM   #16
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I advice you not to get warranty. If it was a very expensive computer, then yeah. But its an iPod and I doubt anything will go wrong with it. Personally, i believe if it doesnt break in the first year, it probably wont break later anyways. my first generation ipod touch is in perfect condition and has no scratches. The battery isn't that good though. I could replace it from Apple if I really want (for the same price as the warranty anyways) but the thing is, it's already not supported by Apple so there isn't much point for me to invest money into it. If you think you might find yourself in a situation like this, then I recommend to not buy the warranty. I'm sure Apple will stop supporting devices after 3 or so years.
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