AppleCare for a MacBook Air -- Advice Wanted

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by sanford, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. sanford macrumors 65816

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Dallas, USA
    #1
    I have to spend $200 -- I get a small discount -- for AppleCare for a MacBook Air by Thursday or I go commando without an extended warranty. I never bought extended warranties until a few Macs back, when for some reason I got paranoid.

    So, should I?

    Details: One year old, single owner MB Air, no problems, the thing hasn't even looked at me funny. It's a laptop, but it's mainly a sofa mobile, not the Mac I take to climb K2, if you know what I mean. In the past I've never used AppleCare beyond the first 12 months. Not once. And I've had all of one Mac, a Mac Plus, fail out of warranty and it was only the power supply. I still have a PowerBook 100 that boots up when plugged into the mains.

    Also, if the MB Air were to make it another year and fail, I would try to replace it rather than repair it. Probably w/ a unibody MacBook. I like the Air, but I miss an extra USB port w/o using a hub, an audio line in and a handy optical drive more than I thought. My iPhone is really more my laptop, if you get what I'm saying. And because the Air is extremely light, it's just not suited to passing along to our younger kids. Even taking good care, the boys would probably inadvertently damage the thing.

    I've pretty much talked myself out of AppleCare this time around, but wanted to see if anyone pipe in with, Oh your MB Air will definitely fail in the second year if it hasn't failed yet, or something like that. Some known defect or something. Far as I can tell, despite controversy over the utility of the Air, and waning interest in it after the first six months, it's been a problem-free design.
     
  2. fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #2
    I've been buying computers since 1994 and never bought an extended warranty and never needed one. In fact, I've never had an warranty work done. The same is true for video equipment. The same is nearly true for audio equipment (since 1975, only one warranty repair and never a need for an extended warranty).
     
  3. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #3
    I have a MBP, not a MBA, but I still got Applecare for it. For me, it is peace of mind while I have the machine, giving me the guarantee of service and product protection for three years from the original date of purchase. Moreover, it is certainly a good selling point should you wish to finance the purchase of an upgrade/newer model when they appear by selling your current computer.

    Apple Macs are expensive, so it pays to protect and guarantee your investment in your product. In addition, Apple tend to honour their guarantees, which is another reason I switched to Apple a year ago; two iPods which I had bought a few years earlier died - both within warranty - and were replaced without a murmur, or an attempt to seek refuge in contractual small-print.

    Cheers and good luck
     
  4. sanford thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 5, 2003
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    #4
    This is the way I'm leaning. I've read that only about 17% of Macs will need repair, with the overwhelming majority of those repairs being made during the first year of service, under the basic warranty, or repair due to owner damaging the Mac. This leaves me betting two hundred bucks on a very, very slight chance the Air will fail before I mothball it, anyway.
     
  5. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    #5
    You can get Applecare for MBA on eBay right now for $134. Not really too bad. I bought Applecare for my iMac using this method and it worked fine. You pay, they send you the serial (and only the serial, unfortunately, but hey, that's what you're paying for), you enter it.

    I always recommend buying it for any Rev. A mac product.

    PS: I had to return my iMac after 2 weeks after a failed attempt to install windows via bootcamp entirely disabled my computer. Apparently it's a known problem. (http://phail.net/2008/04/13/bootcampsp1-white-screen-of-death-a-solution/)
     
  6. sanford thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 5, 2003
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    Dallas, USA
    #6
    Frankly it's a tough decision. $200 is not a lot of money -- I'm too close to the one-year date to risk being out $134 for eBay AppleCare I can't use after Thursday -- but on the other hand we are willfully on one income until both the younger kids are in school. Making $200 worth a lot more. Glasses for one of the boys, or just movie days for the family, what have you.

    Bottom line, $200 is a nice chunk of change gone missing if nothing goes wrong. It's a pittance if the logic board fails. Alas. I'll probably just wing it this time, save the money, hope for the best. Next time I'll budget the AppleCare into the new Mac purchase, get it out of the way, so there's no agonizing over it a year later when we need this, the kids need that, etc.
     
  7. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Location:
    North Korea
    #7
    Buy Applecare on Ebay, you will save 50 to 80%

    Dont buy it from Apple unless you like throwing your money down the drain.

    Everyone on this forum will agree.

    Buy it from a reputable seller with good feeback from other buyers.

    These may help
     
  8. sanford thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 5, 2003
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    Dallas, USA
    #8
    What I want to know is why when we bought our HDTVs some kid asked if we want the extended warranty we scoff, like he's trying to mug us, but for AppleCare it's such a big decision. Any other circumstance, I would say absolutely no way. And the flat truth of it is the household would get along better if I had no functioning MacBook Air than if we had no functioning TV set.
     
  9. jayman99 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2009
    #9
    bottom line, buy the apple care.

    i used to work at apple, i see this all the time. you are getting a discount on it too, this saves you money. yea, sometimes you never use the apple care but when you do have to use it, man let me tell you it is worth every cent. also, if you plan to sell the computer eventually, it is more likely someone will buy it if there is applecare included with the system. if it is out of warranty, most would be weary. do yourself a favor and get the applecare. labor alone on out of warranty macs is base of $200+. just do it.
     
  10. Amdahl macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    #10
    Nvidia?

    If it has an NVIDIA chip, buy the extended.
     
  11. sanford thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 5, 2003
    Location:
    Dallas, USA
    #11
    It's Rev A, it's the Intel chipset. Why? Is the NVIDIA product flakey?

    I fully understand why some people swear by the AppleCare. Part of the reason I'm stuck is that I think it reasonable to keep a Mac three years before upgrading. Over the last decade it's been more like 18 months. If I stick to plan, this Air only has to make it another six months. If I stretch it out to 3 years, the Air is honestly not the Mac I want to be my only Mac for 3 years. It's a fine line for me, but when you want to copy some photos over, plug in your iPhone and burn a CD or DVD -- well the Air loses all its grace when you have to plug and swap all that stuff. I do everything I can wirelessly. Including Time Machine and printing. But I can't rip a CD, burn one, or sync music to my iPhone wirelessly. I guess what I'm saying is that if I had a unibody MacBook or MB Pro, especially a Pro, I'd buy the AppleCare no question, but to drop another $200 (give or take) on the Air, I just don't know. I'll probably shelve the Air in the future unless I have an iMac on my desk too. And I doubt that will happen because I hate maintaining two computers just for my personal use.
     
  12. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #12
    Again: ONLY the 8600M GT in the MacBook Pro was defective.

    The current crop is NOT.
     
  13. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    #13
    Just a note, if you go the eBay route, they'll often email you the serial in 24 hours. I literally got mine within the hour. So I wouldn't worry being out the $134 for that reason. Just check the listing to make sure they'll email it to you quickly.

    If your plan is 18 months then buy a new computer, buy the Applecare anyway. Macs are much more attractive prospects when they're still under warranty.
     

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