Where to buy Apple vs Reseller


macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
I am lookking into buying my first Mac....I am 47 years old and finally going to bite the bullet and leave the PC world. (unless I change my mind again! )

I am sure I will be posting questions/suggestions on which ones..as I am researching..but this question is more WHERE to buy.

i thought for sure I would just buy from the Apple store since there is one that is about 20 minutes away.

But today I was at Best Buy asking a lot of questions....and there were some things I really liked. And before I go to the Apple store, I wanted to see if you guys can give me some things to think about.

1. The protection plan at Best Buy is the kind where if anything happens to the hardware..no matter what you get it fixed or replaced if they cannot fix it. I don't know that Apple care is like that. From reading online I couldn't telll if it was or not. It pretty much says limited coverage.
the price at best buy is higher... from what I can tell the apple care for an imac for example looks to be 169 for 3 years (it says up to 3 years) and best buy for 4 years is 279. But I do like the replacement if anything goes wrong.
Curious if anyone has experience with Best buy vs Apple coverage / pro cons etc.

2. tech support and Training
Since I am new to Mac's I like the training available at the store. I am guessing no matter where we buy the computer we can still take the classes.
But I will ask the apple store.
Next ..I was going to invest in the 99.00 one on one..as I want to make sure it is a smooth transition and I ask a lot of questions.
Best Buy says that they have tech support and it includes asking any type of questions that you have on how to use it. And it includes up to 3 pc's.
So I could have my new mac and my current PC looked at anytime (example they can log into my pc at my house and fix it etc).

Not sure how that compares with Apple..does that 99.00 cover the tech support for errors etc..or does the limited warranty cover tech support to where I don't need to pay the 70.00.

3. Any other pros and cons to buying at the Apple store vs Best Buy etc.

Thanks for your help. Hope it wasn't too long and confusing


macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
Wow. I have to say I have always bought from best buy and have loved them. I guess my story just has great service. Even yesterday the sales person was not pushy at all and spent about 45 minutes with me. Very knowledgeable and perfect customer service

Returns have always been a piece of cake

Now I have never returned a laptop but I have returned a lot and even without a receipt. They just look it up on their computer

I purposely buy my phones their for the replacement insurance

I have never bought the geek squad service tho

Anyone else have any experience with them?

And the apple care ----- am I correct that it is not a replacement type of coverage. And limited in that if it is something I do like spill something or drop it etc. then it is not covered. not that that is my plan. But just trying to compare


macrumors 601
Dec 19, 2004
The Applecare doesn't cover accidental damage. It covers defects. It also covers three years of calling support.

If you want a warranty I'd get the Applecare and save $110 over what Best Buy offers and save an additional $99 over Best Buys technical support. Besides Best Buys technical support for Mac is probably someone that has never used a Mac and just goes through a list of prompts to answer basic questions.

I would get a backup hard drive instead of the extra Best Buy coverage. Which doesn't sound much better than the Applecare.

Besides the Best Buy warranty does not cover all types of accidental damage. They only offer what they consider to be the equivalent replacement. So in three years they may consider the equivalent to be a $500 P.O.S. or offer you that much in store credit. The coverage is not for the computers value but what specs the manager decides are important to base a comparison price on. As far as an iMac goes just about any accidental damage you can do would probably be considered negligence and void the warranty.

Edit: Also repairs beyond the basics can take weeks with Best Buy. Their in store technical staff is poorly trained. How good do you think a technician making $12 an hour is going to be? When a halfway decent technician can make $30+ an hour for companies that offer on site technical hourly support or in corporate IT or $50+ an hour as an independent technician.
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