Is it worth it to purchase AppleCare?

mrhuynh94

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 21, 2012
9
0
Hey guys, I will be buying a new Macbook Pro 13" and i'm not sure whether or not i shouold get AppleCare. I will receive the student discount which will make AppleCare 180 instead of 250. The thing is AppleCare mainly covers manufacturing defects. So I can't use it to replace a broken screen or anything. It is only 180 for 3 years, so what should I do? Thanks!
Am I better off buying a 3 year SquareTrade warranty on Amazon for 180?
 

SlyMac

macrumors 6502
Jun 16, 2008
292
43
Hey guys, I will be buying a new Macbook Pro 13" and i'm not sure whether or not i shouold get AppleCare. I will receive the student discount which will make AppleCare 180 instead of 250. The thing is AppleCare mainly covers manufacturing defects. So I can't use it to replace a broken screen or anything. It is only 180 for 3 years, so what should I do? Thanks!
In my experience, Apple products are generally very reliable and built very well. The few times I've had problems have always occured in the early days of the machines life (well before the 1 year is up). I tend to hold off on purchasing an applecare plan and wait until the 1 year warranty is almost up. If, at that time, I think I'll be keeping it for a while, I usually pick up the extended warranty. If I am leaning towards an upgrade, I pass on the extension because I know I will be selling it soon.
 

Geruvah

macrumors newbie
Aug 19, 2012
16
0
You will never know what manufacturing defects your computer will have 3 years from now. Maybe it starts to really overheat because a fan just stopped working. Maybe a button on the keyboard stops working. What I'm saying is don't expect the only thing to happen to your computer is because of you. The rule I heard of is there are a few things you want to buy Applecare for: Laptops, displays, ipod/iphone and ipads because those are all mobile so far more likely to see environmental stress.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
756
AppleCare
AppleCare Protection Plan for Mac or Apple Display

  • You can buy AppleCare any time during the first year warranty period, so you don't have to buy it at time of purchase.
  • You can check your remaining warranty and/or AppleCare coverage here
  • AppleCare will extend the 1 year warranty for an additional 2 years, for a total of 3 years coverage from the date of your Mac purchase.
    It also extends telephone support from 90 days, which is included with your original warranty, to a total of 3 years.
  • You cannot buy AppleCare again or renew it once it expires.
  • Neither the Apple Warranty nor AppleCare will cover damage from accidents, spills, etc. They only cover manufacturing defects.
  • AppleCare+ provides some coverage for accidental damage, but is only available for the iPad and iPhone, not for Apple computers.
  • Neither the Apple Warranty nor AppleCare will cover batteries that have worn out. They only cover defective batteries.
  • For more detailed questions, read the AppleCare Protection Plan (pdf) agreement.

As to whether AppleCare is worth it or not, that's a matter of opinion. You'll find lots of opinions on both sides, with roughly 75% saying it's worth it. You really need to decide if it's worth it to you. If you want more information, you can search the forum, where you'll find dozens, if not hundreds of threads asking "is AppleCare worth it?" The overall consensus seems to be about 75% in favor of it.
 

dailybibliotaph

macrumors member
Jun 23, 2012
60
0
To the OP:

You have to think of it this way. Applecare should not be looked at any differently than any other extended warranty programs companies try to peddle to customers. Applecare does not buy you 3 years of warranty coverage - it buys you 2, in addition to the free year you get with purchase.

The reason why extended warranty programs are pushed so hard at BestBuy and other electronic stores, including Apple, is because they are an easy cash cow for companies where in the vast majority of cases the consumer losses out (and because extended warranty programs do not fall under the jurisdiction of the state insurance board). A few anecdotal stories of AppleCare being used doesn't eliminate the fact you'll be way better off not buying it - statistically speaking.

However, if you are the type of person who likes to make financial or consumer choices dictated by emotion, then by all means pay $180 for the reassurance of an event that most likely will not happen.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
756
However, if you are the type of person who likes to make financial or consumer choices dictated by emotion, then by all means pay $180 for the reassurance of an event that most likely will not happen.
It has nothing to do with emotion. Some would rather pay a known amount for 3 years of protection instead of risking possible repair charges that could be much more. It's a matter of risk tolerance and assessment, not emotion. :rolleyes:
 

hallux

macrumors 68030
Apr 25, 2012
2,777
485
It should also be noted that if the OP plans to use a credit card for the purchase, some offer automatic doubling of the factory warranty. American Express and Discover are 2 that do.
 

dailybibliotaph

macrumors member
Jun 23, 2012
60
0
It's a matter of risk tolerance and assessment, not emotion. :rolleyes:
I would respectfully disagree. The question is "why" would you pay a fixed amount for x-amount of coverage for a highly unlikely incident. Sure, risk tolerance plays a great deal into the equation - however, risk tolerance is rarely calculated by consumers in a quantitative method. That leaves most risk assessment choices dictated by qualitative reasoning, namely the sense of "peace of mind", ect - or emotive reasons.

PS- I realize that my previous post may have read as in insult to people who purchase extended warranties - that was never my intent and I apologize if it come out that way.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
756
I would respectfully disagree. The question is "why" would you pay a fixed amount for x-amount of coverage for a highly unlikely incident. Sure, risk tolerance plays a great deal into the equation - however, risk tolerance is rarely calculated by consumers in a quantitative method. That leaves most risk assessment choices dictated by qualitative reasoning, namely the sense of "peace of mind", ect - or emotive reasons.

PS- I realize that my previous post may have read as in insult to people who purchase extended warranties - that was never my intent and I apologize if it come out that way.
If I offered most people their choice of a free Mac with a 1 year warranty or the same free Mac with a 3 year warranty, reasonable people would opt for the latter. That indicates there is value in having a longer warranty coverage. The only question is how much value there is to each buyer. One may be willing to pay only $1 for an extra 2 years; another may be willing to pay $500.

Peace of mind isn't necessarily an emotional issue. Peace of mind can be having the assurance that a defective logic board doesn't blow someone's budget by having to come up with $750 at an inconvenient or unexpected time. That's not emotion. That's prudent planning.

The bottom line is people will buy, or not buy, AppleCare for many reasons. The only reasons that matter are those of the buyer. What works for some may not work for others, and categorizing all those who make a choice to buy AppleCare as "emotional" is inappropriate and inaccurate.
 

jav6454

macrumors P6
Nov 14, 2007
16,871
1,492
1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
Hey guys, I will be buying a new Macbook Pro 13" and i'm not sure whether or not i shouold get AppleCare. I will receive the student discount which will make AppleCare 180 instead of 250. The thing is AppleCare mainly covers manufacturing defects. So I can't use it to replace a broken screen or anything. It is only 180 for 3 years, so what should I do? Thanks!
Am I better off buying a 3 year SquareTrade warranty on Amazon for 180?
Short simple answer from someone who has had a Mac and has used AppleCare at the ear 2 and 3 marks, Yes, yes it is. You spend what? $234 and save yourself from huge bills when something breaks? Great buy. For the record I saved myself from a display and logic board failure.
 

dailybibliotaph

macrumors member
Jun 23, 2012
60
0
That indicates there is value in having a longer warranty coverage.

What works for some may not work for others, and categorizing all those who make a choice to buy AppleCare as "emotional" is inappropriate and inaccurate.
I never said extended warranties have no value, just that the principle value is rarely worth its purchase price.

Emotional reasons behind consumer choice is surely appropriate and accurate - it's the plain truth in the vast majority of our collective buying and financial habits. However, to say that the choice is simply the right choice for some and not for others detracts from the fact that like the lottery the vast majority of buyers will lose in the end.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
756
I never said extended warranties have no value, just that the principle value is rarely worth its purchase price.

Emotional reasons behind consumer choice is surely appropriate and accurate - it's the plain truth in the vast majority of our collective buying and financial habits. However, to say that the choice is simply the right choice for some and not for others detracts from the fact that like the lottery the vast majority of buyers will lose in the end.
The difference with the lottery is, if I don't play, I don't risk losing anything except potential winnings. I do have a risk of losing if I don't buy an extended warranty. And the odds of having an expensive failure on a Mac is exponentially greater than the odds of winning a lottery.
 

koigirl

macrumors 6502a
Jul 29, 2011
715
206
Raleigh, NC
I am a person who does not generally advocate purchasing extended warranties. I don't think most of them are worth the cost. However, in the case of portable Apple products, I do. Yes, Apple Care is overpriced but it provides excellent, comprehensive coverage and service. I have used it several times over the years with various laptops when components (generally hard drives) go bad before the 3-year coverage is up, not to mention Apple Care free phone support, and Applecare has paid for itself in those situations. My advice is to get the Apple Care if you can afford it. If you can't swing it, don't fret. These machines are well-made and long-lasting.
 

jav6454

macrumors P6
Nov 14, 2007
16,871
1,492
1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
The difference with the lottery is, if I don't play, I don't risk losing anything except potential winnings. I do have a risk of losing if I don't buy an extended warranty. And the odds of having an expensive failure on a Mac is exponentially greater than the odds of winning a lottery.
As much as I dislike canned postings this guy makes, he makes a very good and important point. That last thing you want to do is find yourself in a situation where that $2.5k computer has a failed logic board that will run you at least $300 in parts (not including labor or tax).

Like I illustrated, overall, thanks to AppleCare I have saved myself from over $800 worth of repair costs (labor, parts and tax included). Quite a money saver considering I paid $228ish.
 

Dangerous Theory

macrumors 68000
Jul 28, 2011
1,981
28
UK
It's like tossing a biased coin - the odds may be 20% in favour, 80% not. As the above poster said, statistically you are more likely not to make more than your moneys worth out of it. Just like insurance companies, they are only selling warranties for profit. I am happy mine came with a free 3 year warranty, but I wouldn't have paid for it. Even if you lose out on one particular occasion, over a long period of time that loss will be outweighed by the savings of not purchasing warranties. It is straightforward probability, so as mentioned above it is very much a 'peace of mind' thing for some people, but certainly not the most cost-effective way to go in the long run.
 

wunderbar911

macrumors newbie
Aug 21, 2012
7
0
This might be a little off topic. When you get AppleCare, do you still have to pay $49 each time you call for phone support or bring it in to get it checked out? This is the part that I didn't quite understand about the warranty. I would of thought that if the product is found to be a real defect that they really shouldn't be charging us $49 for the call. I can see if they check the issue out and it is not covered under warranty then I have no problem with paying the $49 fee.
 

wunderbar911

macrumors newbie
Aug 21, 2012
7
0
Ok. I see now. You mean it works this way:

standard warranty:
1 year parts/labour
90-day telephone support
- meaning after 90 days we would have to pay $49/incident?

Apple care:
3 years parts/labour/telephone service
- meaning no charge to review problem with product?

Is this correct?
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
756
Ok. I see now. You mean it works this way:

standard warranty:
1 year parts/labour
90-day telephone support
- meaning after 90 days we would have to pay $49/incident?

Apple care:
3 years parts/labour/telephone service
- meaning no charge to review problem with product?

Is this correct?
Correct.
 

iAppl3Fan

macrumors 6502a
Sep 8, 2011
789
19
I wouldn't buy it. It's not worth it. By the time your computer needs major repairs, its time to get a new one anyway.