Always buy AppleCare+ on MBPs

mrjohnnyglass

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
73
67
Long story here. Have a 2018 15" MBP. Bought in July of 2018. About 3 months ago, the display started glitching out, showing flashes of green/red screen, and brightness couldn't be adjusted. Did all the normal steps, ended up taking it to Apple and they replaced the top case. Was without my computer for a week.

About 4 weeks ago, I started seeing sticky keys on my keyboard (RIP) and my battery life went to ****. I'm talking, fully charged, just browsing the web and checking email I'd get 2 hours out of it. Do all the tests, battery shows "normal" in System Prefs, but can't be without my computer, as I use it to work. Call AppleCare, they order the part to the store, and they tell me if I take it in on Friday night, they'll have it back to me on Sunday.

Yesterday comes, and the store calls me before they open. They've "discovered" other issues that require it to be sent to an offsite repair facility. Two week turnaround time. I don't buy their explanation, as the other issue was my TouchID sensor which had been giving me no issues previously. I'm pretty sure they broke it in the top case replacement process. No loaner laptops available, and no other solution than sending it away.

This is now the 3rd issue in 3 months, that my $3500 machine has had, and if it were a car, would be considered a lemon. I call AppleCare, get sent right to a Customer Relations, who tells me basically, tough luck, send it in, we can't help you.

Mind you, I've owned pretty much every iPhone, 5-6 iPads, and this is my 4th MBP since 2006, all of which had AppleCare, and I've never needed the coverage for hardware on any device. So, I'm not taking this "oh well" response from Apple.

After the customer relations executive says "no thanks" to helping me, I call 1-800-MY-APPLE right back and ask to speak to a Tier 2/Senior AppleCare Manager. Get a guy on the phone who finally agrees to help me. We spend about 3 hours on the phone together, but the long and the short of it is he gets approval to replace my laptop with a 2019 Space Gray 15" with the 8 core and 16GB and 500GB of storage. He's sending it to the Apple Store, and when it comes in, they'll swap my old machine out with the new one.

Long and short of it is, had I not had AppleCare+, I don't think the Apple rep I talked to the 2nd time would've helped me. But now, I'm getting a better machine than I had, and hopefully no more issues.

TL;DR - Buy AppleCare+ if it's available, you never know when you'll need it.
 

dpny

macrumors regular
Jan 5, 2013
213
64
I would extend this to say always buy Applecare+ for any laptop. Anything which gets put into a bag and carted around with me is much more likely to get damaged than a desktop which sits safely at home.
 
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LeeW

macrumors 6502a
Feb 5, 2017
854
1,184
Glasgow, Scotland
Buy AppleCare+ if it's available, you will need it.
Fixed that for you.

The sad reality is that you must always consider the cost of the device + plus Apple Care on all Apple laptops. They are just not reliable enough to do without it unless you can afford to take a chance and fund costly repairs. But you know this and you also know even with Apple Care you still need to fight for its benefit.
 

mrjohnnyglass

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
73
67
Absolutely. I always get **** on by my friends for buying "extended warranties" on my tech products. For TVs and home entertainment, I almost always buy at Best Buy since their Geek Squad protection plan has always panned out well, at least for me. I just like having someone I can call to fix **** if it breaks. I am in no way a DIYer.
 
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kohlson

macrumors 68000
Apr 23, 2010
1,993
539
My daughter's 2016 13-MBP has been problematic. In for depot repair at 3 months, 18 months, and 33 months. This last one was a complete rebuild.

We are deep into the Apple ecosystem, but her laptop (and iPhone 7) have not been reliable. AppleCare on these things.
 

Northern Man

macrumors 6502
Aug 25, 2013
406
510
My daughter's 2016 13-MBP has been problematic. In for depot repair at 3 months, 18 months, and 33 months. This last one was a complete rebuild.

We are deep into the Apple ecosystem, but her laptop (and iPhone 7) have not been reliable. AppleCare on these things.
You have my sympathy. Perhaps it is time to start getting more shallow in the Apple ecosystem?
 

mrjohnnyglass

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
73
67
You have my sympathy. Perhaps it is time to start getting more shallow in the Apple ecosystem?
For some of us, that's not really an option at this point. Having been in the iOS/iTunes ecosystem for years, I've got probably 200 apps that I've paid for, a purchased movie collection that exceeds 300 movies, Apple TVs, iPads, Apple Watches, and phones/laptops.

I just want Apple to stand by their products if they are faulty. So far, especially in this case they have. But to just say "Leave the ecosystem" isn't really a helpful response.
 

Hazmat401

macrumors regular
Dec 29, 2017
175
225
Delaware County, Pa
Long story here. Have a 2018 15" MBP. Bought in July of 2018. About 3 months ago, the display started glitching out, showing flashes of green/red screen, and brightness couldn't be adjusted. Did all the normal steps, ended up taking it to Apple and they replaced the top case. Was without my computer for a week.

About 4 weeks ago, I started seeing sticky keys on my keyboard (RIP) and my battery life went to ****. I'm talking, fully charged, just browsing the web and checking email I'd get 2 hours out of it. Do all the tests, battery shows "normal" in System Prefs, but can't be without my computer, as I use it to work. Call AppleCare, they order the part to the store, and they tell me if I take it in on Friday night, they'll have it back to me on Sunday.

Yesterday comes, and the store calls me before they open. They've "discovered" other issues that require it to be sent to an offsite repair facility. Two week turnaround time. I don't buy their explanation, as the other issue was my TouchID sensor which had been giving me no issues previously. I'm pretty sure they broke it in the top case replacement process. No loaner laptops available, and no other solution than sending it away.

This is now the 3rd issue in 3 months, that my $3500 machine has had, and if it were a car, would be considered a lemon. I call AppleCare, get sent right to a Customer Relations, who tells me basically, tough luck, send it in, we can't help you.

Mind you, I've owned pretty much every iPhone, 5-6 iPads, and this is my 4th MBP since 2006, all of which had AppleCare, and I've never needed the coverage for hardware on any device. So, I'm not taking this "oh well" response from Apple.

After the customer relations executive says "no thanks" to helping me, I call 1-800-MY-APPLE right back and ask to speak to a Tier 2/Senior AppleCare Manager. Get a guy on the phone who finally agrees to help me. We spend about 3 hours on the phone together, but the long and the short of it is he gets approval to replace my laptop with a 2019 Space Gray 15" with the 8 core and 16GB and 500GB of storage. He's sending it to the Apple Store, and when it comes in, they'll swap my old machine out with the new one.

Long and short of it is, had I not had AppleCare+, I don't think the Apple rep I talked to the 2nd time would've helped me. But now, I'm getting a better machine than I had, and hopefully no more issues.

TL;DR - Buy AppleCare+ if it's available, you never know when you'll need it.
Wait a min....???

You said in your op that it was a $3500 machine

What were your original specs because if you were to buy the new 2019 in a store... that’s a $2700 spec computer
 

mrjohnnyglass

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
73
67
Wait a min....???

You said in your op that it was a $3500 machine

What were your original specs because if you were to buy the new 2019 in a store... that’s a $2700 spec computer
Just found my receipt. The computer, AppleCare+, and two cables was $3261 with tax, and then I bought an ATV that day as well, for a total of $3478 after tax. So I'm rounding on my entire purchase, sue me.
 

mcpix

macrumors 6502
May 13, 2005
272
59
I 100% agree with buying AppleCare + on any Apple Laptop. I had a MBP 2012 that required 2 Screen/Topcase replacements (one of which was my fault!) and a battery replacement that they didn't have to cover but did anyway. I currently have a 2017 MBP that has a corner ding that I'll eventually get repaired (waiting to see if I have any keyboard issues, but so far so good). I do play a little game with myself in that I usually wait about 30 days to buy the AppleCare + . That way, it makes the laptop price seem more reasonable.
 

SantaClawz

macrumors newbie
Jun 17, 2019
22
16
Toronto area
Reliability isn't any better outside of the Apple ecosystem, and most PC/Android vendors have worse customer service and replacement policies than Apple. Try and get Razer to replace a faulty laptop. . .
Plus with Apple at least you have an official place (Apple store) to take your devices in for repairs and diagnostics, with other manufacturers (maybe aside from Microsoft) you are probably **** out of luck.
 

savagemic

macrumors newbie
Sep 25, 2019
16
5
I'm waiting on the 16" MacBook Pro release but when I do I will surely spend the few hundred dollars on AppleCare+. On a purchase that large the insurance is worth it. Especially with the amount of time I typically keep my Mac laptops.
 

TheSkywalker77

macrumors 68000
Sep 9, 2017
1,603
938
Florida
I'm just avoiding this generation of MBP's altogether. I recently had my Logic Board on a 2012 pre-retina MBP fried and I replaced it with another mid-2012 MBP (15-inch instead of 13-inch though) and I absolutely love it. The unibody days were the best for the MacBook line imo and their new computers are 100% form > function. I'm happy you were able to get your computer taken care of though, that was certainly a nightmare and at that point I would've said "f**k it, I'm switching to Windows". I'll definitely keep this in mind next time I purchase a MBP though.
 

Falhófnir

macrumors 68040
Aug 19, 2017
3,491
3,874
Been saying for ages they crossed the line on robustness with this generation. I really appreciate the super compact form factor, but they're just too fragile and highly strung for portable computers. Hopefully the 16" and all thereafter will start resembling the 2015 era machines more than these, though that might be a vain hope.
 

_Kiki_

macrumors 6502a
Aug 13, 2017
841
253
Plus with Apple at least you have an official place (Apple store) to take your devices in for repairs and diagnostics, with other manufacturers (maybe aside from Microsoft) you are probably **** out of luck.
from Dell or Lenovo extended warranty can cover repair at home or business place, engineer will repair your laptop within about an hour, it's better than traveling with MBP to Apple store, losing the time for travel and your laptop for few days of repair, also if you live in big US city you can have good access to Apple store but some places in the world there is no Apple store at all
 
Last edited:

savagemic

macrumors newbie
Sep 25, 2019
16
5
from Dell or Lenovo extended warranty can cover repair at home or business place, engineer will repair your laptop within about an hour, it's better than traveling with MBP to Apple store, losing the time for travel and your laptop for few days of repair, also if you live in big US city you can have good access to Apple store but some places in the world there is no Apple store at all
Since I carry mine everyday I really need some type of metal chassis. Plus I have some software I need OSX for but you are right. We work with Dell a lot but we still have to mail into the depot most of the time. Few exceptions a tech has come out.
 

jasonp99

macrumors newbie
Sep 11, 2007
16
0
Just keep in mind that if you buy with a decent credit card (I like Amex for these type of purchases) you get an extra year of warranty. So AppleCare is really only buying that 3rd year. Is it worth it, I don't know?
 

Velin

macrumors 65816
Jul 23, 2008
1,471
909
Hearst Castle
Just keep in mind that if you buy with a decent credit card (I like Amex for these type of purchases) you get an extra year of warranty. So AppleCare is really only buying that 3rd year. Is it worth it, I don't know?
I think so. The credit card warranties have all manner of exceptions and asterisks for consumer purchase coverage. Perhaps AMEX is better. Also, using Applecare usually is a frictionless experience, and that's worth a lot.
 

mrjohnnyglass

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
73
67
I think so. The credit card warranties have all manner of exceptions and asterisks for consumer purchase coverage. Perhaps AMEX is better. Also, using Applecare usually is a frictionless experience, and that's worth a lot.
I've had quite a bit of troubles with warranty on my Amex. I had a DJI Mavic Pro that died on me 39 days into owning it, and it took forever to get Amex to deal with it. Ultimately got it replaced but it took almost 5 months. I dropped this computer off on Friday last week and have my new one Tuesday night.

Applecare FTW
 
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LeeW

macrumors 6502a
Feb 5, 2017
854
1,184
Glasgow, Scotland
Despite the fact, you should expect a laptop of these standards to last (and in honestly, they do in most cases) Applecare+ is still something I always take and recommend. I have had one accidental damage claim and it was dealt with quickly. Would have cost me far more than the cost of AC+
 

pshufd

macrumors 65816
Oct 24, 2013
1,291
876
New Hampshire
I've never purchased AppleCare for any Apple products and have been using their laptops for our family since 2007. iPads, PowerMacs, Macintosh, Macintosh+, Lisa, Apple II, iPads, iPhones, etc. That said, our latest MacBook Pros are 2014 and 2015 models. We won't buy the current generation models.
 
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mrjohnnyglass

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
73
67
Despite the fact, you should expect a laptop of these standards to last (and in honestly, they do in most cases) Applecare+ is still something I always take and recommend. I have had one accidental damage claim and it was dealt with quickly. Would have cost me far more than the cost of AC+
Absolutely. A screen replacement on a 2017-2019 is $699, and a top case replacement is $599, plus you get all the phone support, which I've used a lot more recently. Applecare+ is worth every penny.
 

LeeW

macrumors 6502a
Feb 5, 2017
854
1,184
Glasgow, Scotland
I've never purchased AppleCare for any Apple products and have been using their laptops for our family since 2007.
I mean its a choice, like I say, with the keyboard issues and other complaints even the current generation work for the majority although the failure rate is too high regardless.

But even so, the current generation (2016-) with its retina display, everything soldered on, a keyboard that cannot be replaced independently of the top cover, touch bar cost and so on. Any single repair will be costly and that will not change for future generations of the device. Which I would say is reason enough to not skip AC at this point or the future on laptops.

I don't mind the way Apple builds their laptops, I want the thinnest and lightest for travel, I cannot get user-replaceable or even easily replaceable components as well. Just not possible. I don't want thicker just to have an HDMI or USB type A. Would rather use a dongle. But thats just me.

Not only Apple doing it now, look at the Surface Laptop, if it goes wrong it truly is a bin case, it simply cannot be opened without destroying it. So you need the care package, at something like $200 for 2 years and you can expect a refurb device as a replacement I would be wary of buying one.