AppleCare: Do You or Don’t You?

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There’s a post on TUAW about the kind of incident we’ve all heard of. One minute your laptop is fine, the next minute it’s not. Of course, this is usually how things break, but the point is something you rely on is no longer working, and in this case the necessary fix was not cheap.

Had the laptop been under an AppleCare extended warranty ($249 for a MacBook), this would have been covered. It turns out the repairs were much less than initially thought, but the eternal question still rages: Do you or don’t you purchase AppleCare protection for your Mac?

For me, the answer’s an emphatic “yes”. Any quality PC is a pretty big investment, yet subject to break. The likelihood of breaking increases for a laptop, since you have the variable of harder treatment as it’s moved around. An extended warranty is generally a small price to pay for the assurance you can use the machine for years if you want to.

The TUAW article goes into detail for cost of the warranty vs. machine cost, etc., but ultimately (as they also mention) it’s about piece of mind.

The beauty of AppleCare is that you don’t have to buy it at Mac purchase. You have until the one-year warranty expires. So you can budget for the hardware, tax, shipping., etc. and not worry about the additional warranty expense for another year. My iMac and white MacBook have AppleCare, my unibody 13″ does not. It’ll be a year old in October, and I’ll buy it then.

AppleCare ranges in price from the Mac mini to the 17″ MacBook Pro. It represents relative prices (and expense of repairs) for the various models. When considered as a percentage of the cost of the machine, and amortized over the length of the contract, I think it’s well worth it.

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7 thoughts on “AppleCare: Do You or Don’t You?

  1. Tom … my practice (as a technician and consultant) Applecare for all all in ones – everything else is usually covered in a recall. The irony is, most everything from Apple is an all in one.

    I wouldn’t buy for an iPhone.

    I would buy for a Macbook Pro but not a Macbook

    I would buy for a Mac Pro but not a Mac Mini.

    You have to gauge what the repair costs and your abilities are

  2. I always sign up for AppleCare for anything I use. If I’m having problems with the OS, I can call and they will help. Problems with Mobileme, I can call and they help. Problems with bad HD or DVD I call and they have someone come to my home and replace the defective part. I live 6 hours away from an Apple store, and since I use an iMac, a tech shows up on my doorstep and fixes the iMac. Great service!

  3. I once bought a Mac with my Platinum Visa card which automatically doubled the warranty from one to two years. I thought thats all I would need, but two or three days after, my eMac’s built-in screen went belly up! In most cases you probably don’t really need the extra warranty, but thanks to that bad incident, I prefer to buy an Apple (or other extended warranty) simply for the peace of mind that it brings me, because you never know, you know?

  4. Same here and it is a must to have for the peace of mind for 3 years.

  5. I take up AppleCare only when the initial year’s cover is about to finish

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