Top 5 iPhone 5s Insurance & Warranty Options Compared

When you buy the iPhone 5s Apple will ask if you want to buy AppleCare+ an extended iPhone 5s warranty and your carrier will try to sell iPhone 5s insurance to cover a lost or stolen iPhone.

While it is a good idea to buy some type of iPhone 5s insurance or an extended iPhone 5s warranty it is a good idea to compare prices, benefits, features and the fine print before buying one.

Even though the iPhone 5s may not look very expensive at $199 on contract, if it breaks or is stolen in the middle of the contract the price to replace it is significantly higher at your carrier. The $199 iPhone 5s will cost $649 to replace at a carrier, and the higher capacity models are as expensive as $849 when purchased off contract.

The price difference comes from carrier subsidies, which knock $50 off the price of the phone, an amount carriers make back from your monthly payments for data and service.

Broken iPhones are no joke. Here's a look a the best iPhone 5s insurance and warranty options.

Broken iPhones are no joke. Here’s a look a the best iPhone 5s insurance and warranty options.

With the high price of an iPhone 5s, many users should at least consider buying iPhone 5s insurance or an iPhone 5s warranty that covers water damage.

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In a survey of nearly 5,000 iPhone 5 buyers last year, AppleCare+, SquareTrade and Protect Your Bubble were the top iPhone 5s insurance and warranty options Gotta Be Mobile readers purchased.

If you have a broken iPhone 5s and you didn’t buy insurance or a warranty, you can usually buy an out of warranty replacement at an Apple Store. The iPhone 5 out of warranty replacement price is $229 right now, but it is not clear what Apple will charge for an out of warranty iPhone 5s replacement.

iPhone 5s Insurance vs. iPhone 5s Warranty

The iPhone 5s comes with a one year Apple warranty that covers defects like bad battery life, the power or home button going bad and other issues, but it does not help with iPhone theft, iPhone loss or damage from drops or water. For this you will need insurance or a warranty that covers accidental damage

Some of these options require you to buy the insurance or warranty when you purchase the phone, while others offer options to buy a warranty or add insurance later on. So it’s a good idea to know what you want before you go to the store to buy a new iPhone.

While durable, the iPhone is not indestructible.

While durable, the iPhone is not indestructible.

iPhone 5s Insurance Explained

iPhone 5s insurance options typically cost more than an iPhone 5s warranty because it covers more. Just like car insurance, these options charge an up front fee and then a deductible when you make a claim. Like car insurance the iPhone 5s insurance options listed on this page include coverage for a lost or stolen iPhone in addition to one damaged by water or a drop.

iPhone 5s Warranties Explained

The iPhone 5s warranty options include coverage for a broken iPhone in several ways. First, they extend the initial Apple warranty an additional year, which means coverage for a power button that breaks or similar issues. Second, the iPhone warranty options add coverage for accidental damage including drops or water damage. Basically, if you break your new iPhone 5s this will pay to have it fixed, but you will need to be able to send it in to use the warranty.

An iPhone 5s warranty does not cover loss or theft, this also means if you drop the iPhone 5s in a lake and cannot recover it you can’t file a claim for water damage.

Which Should I Buy?

Choosing between an iPhone 5s insurance offer and an iPhone 5s warranty is a personal choice, but it boils down to how likely you think it would be that you will not physically have your iPhone after it breaks.

If you hunt, fish, hike and boat with your iPhone 5s and are worried that it could fall somewhere you can’t recover it, or if iPhone theft is a big problem in your area a warranty could be the best deal.

If you are mainly worried about dropping your iPhone 5s into water or breaking the screen, then an iPhone 5s warranty could be a better deal.

iPhone 5s Insurance & Warranty Options

Take a look at the best iPhone 5s insurance and warranty options.

Take a look at the best iPhone 5s insurance and warranty options.

AppleCare+ – $99

AppleCare+ is a warranty from Apple that extends the warranty for the iPhone 5s battery, USB cable, headphones, buttons and more and combines it with two years of phone support and two accidental damage claims.

AppleCare+ iPHone 5s Warranty

AppleCare+ is one of the most popular iPhone 5s warranty options because it is available direct from Apple and all support is routed through an Apple Store or through Apple’s phone support team.

If you purchase AppleCare+ for the iPhone 5s you can take a water damage or busted screen iPhone 5s into an Apple Store and get a new one for the $79 service fee.

You must buy AppleCare+ within 30 days of buying the iPhone 5s and it will need to be inspected at an Apple Store or you will need to run a diagnostic on it while buying on the phone from Apple.

AppleCare+ will not cover a lost or stolen iPhone.

SquareTrade – $129

SquareTrade is another popular iPhone 5s warranty option thanks to attractive pricing and multiple options for an iPhone 5s repair or replacement.

SquareTrade is similar to AppleCare+ but the service fee for replacing an iPhone is $50 instead of $79. Users can even extend the plan out to three years and it is transferable.

Squaretrade iPhone 5s warranty

The SquareTrade iPhone 5s plan includes up to 4 repairs or replacements and thanks to a nice reimbursement option users can take a broken iPhone 5s into an Apple Store Genius Bar for a repair and have SquareTrade pay them back for the cost within a day.

Users can also file a claim online and have a new iPhone sent to their address, similar to AppleCare+. Like other iPhone 5s warranties this does not help with loss or theft.

The SquareTrade iPhone 5s warranty must be purchased with in 30 days to qualify for this pricing, but users can buy a SquareTrade iPhone warranty for an older iPhone with the SquareTrade app for $7.99 a month.

Credit Card – Free

iPhone 5s warranty extensionIf you mainly want some added protection from an iPhone 5s power button or Touch ID sensor failing, and don’t need water damage or cracked screen protection, buying the iPhone 5s on a credit card should be enough.

MasterCard and American Express often include an Extended Warranty Protection which doubles the manufacturer warranty on your gadgets. This is a free service that requires you still have an open line of credit and the receipt, but that’s pretty much it.

Call the 1-800 number on the back of your credit card to find out if purchases qualify for an extended warranty and what you need to do to enroll and or collect down the line.

If the iPhone 5 breaks out of Apple’s one-year iPhone warranty you call the Extended Warranty department and start the process. Then you will go to an Apple Store or qualified repair center to get the iPhone 5s repaired and then get reimbursed by the credit card company for the repairs.

Once again this does not cover loss or theft.

Carrier Insurance – Up to $9.99 a month

T-Mobile iPhone 5SAll of the iPhone carriers also offer iPhone 5s insurance at the time of purchase for $7 top $10 a month plus a deductible.

Carriers offer iPhone 5s insurance which means the service covers loss, theft and damage. Each carrier charges a different amount and a different deductible. Some of the new early upgrade plans like T-Mobile Jump include insurance in the monthly payment.

  • AT&T – $6.99 a month
  • Verizon – $9.99 a month
  • Sprint – $11.00 a month
  • T-Mobile – $11.99 a month

Each carrier will charge a deductible when getting a replacement which can hit $199 per claim. Most plans only allow two claims before the user is cut off.

These plans are more expensive, but they cover pretty much anything that can happen to the iPhone 5s.

Protect Your Bubble

iPhone 5s insurance options are tough to find outside of carriers, but Protect your Bubble offers an option that users should definitely check out.

Protect Your Bubble sells iPhone 5s insurance for $143.99 for two years or $7.99 a month. This includes 2 claims per 12 months and covers drops, mechanical failures, water damage, loss and theft. Pretty much anything that could happen to your iPhone is covered.

Protect Your Bubble iPhone 5s insurance

The Protect Your Bubble site does not list the iPhone 5s, but it should be available soon. Users who are insuring multiple gadgets can receive a 10% discount on the next item.

Below we offer an iPhone 5s insurance and warranty comparison chart that covers the number of claims, prices and what is covered by each warranty and insurance option.

iPhone 5s Insurance & Warranty 2 Year Price Deductible # of Claims Accidental? Loss/Theft
AppleCare+ $99 $79 2 Yes No
SquareTrade $129 $50 on Drop Spill up 4 claims Yes No
Credit Card $0 $0 1 per purchase No No
AT&T or Verizon $168-$287 Up to $199 2 per 12 months Yes Yes
Protect Your Bubble $143 $120 2 per 12 months Yes Yes

Best Value for iPhone 5s Protection

If you want iPhone 5s warranty options, look for AppleCare+ and SquareTrade. Both offer reliable service and the convenience of in store or by mail replacements and repairs at a reasonable price. For users that need to cover loss or theft, Protect Your Bubble remains a top choice thanks to the price and customer service.

The credit card option is nice, but won’t cover a whole lot other than a button breaking or battery going bad. Carrier iPhone 5s insurance options remain expensive.

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Comments

  1. Mr. Smith says

    thanks for skipping best buy??? 14.99/month for 24 months, accidental, factory defects and water damage covered. No deductable. No claim limit.

    • Rodney Gibbons says

      The salesman at Bestbuy told me today that they discontinued the water and theft coverage on the Iphone 5S

  2. waryofthefineprint says

    This article is lacking in that it doesn’t mention what these various policies maximum claim limits are. iPhone’s are much more when you aren’t purchasing one with a 2-year carrier commitment so anyone needing insurance on their phone with be paying full price on replacements. What are the various insurance policies claim limits? (The maximum amount the insurer will cover on replacing your device?) This is a huge part of the comparison process, many iPhone insurance providers turn out not to be worth it when you add up the initial policy cost, deductible, and claim limit cap. I would be very appreciative for any accurate info on this, but so far I’m leaning towards not insuring my phone at all since the amount I would be saving if I had insurance appears to be minimal, and there is always the possibility that I won’t need to ever file a claim in which case this would all be money wasted. Pardon my lack of conciseness…

  3. Chad says

    I don’t understand why anyone would buy insurance/warranty with Apple’s out of warranty replacement program in place. With the upfront cost plus the breakage fee ($99 + $79 for example) with apple care, you are out $178. It would seem to me the option to take your chances and risk maybe paying $50 more if you break your phone is a better option than paying the $100 bucks upfront. This is especially true given that most people don’t break their phones. What am I missing here?

    • Anonymous says

      You’re missing the fact that when you buy the phone outside of an upgrade or new contract it costs like 600 or 700 dollars.

  4. Dan H. says

    When I go to Square Trade’s website, it shows “A $99 deductible applies to all claims.” It does not say anything about “$50 on Drop Spill”. Is this a recent change?

    I looked into the “Credit Card” insurance. My credit card will double the warranty. Reading the fine print this is what I found out: They will only pay repairs for the amount you paid. Since I got a subsidised phone and paid $99.00 that is all they will pay. If you paid full price this might be worth it.

  5. Dan H. says

    Here are the Chase credit card warranty terms:

    How will I be reimbursed?
    Depending on the nature and circumstances of the incident, the Benefit Administrator, at its discretion, may choose to handle your claim in one
    of two ways:
    1. The damaged item (whether wholly or in part) may be repaired, rebuilt, or replaced. A stolen item may be replaced. If the item is to be
    repaired, rebuilt, or replaced, you will be notified of the decision within fifteen (15) days following receipt of the required proof-of-theft/damage
    documentation.
    2. You may be reimbursed for the eligible item, but not more than the original purchase price of the covered item as recorded on your eligible card
    receipt, less shipping and handling charges, up to a maximum of $250 per claim occurrence.

  6. Jas says

    The 5S is a prime target for theft. I live on my phone. My father had his taken from his table at a restaurant by someone causing a diversion. My brother had his stolen from his car while he was working out. Someone must have seen him on the phone when he pulled in. He put it in his console, out of sight. 45 minutes later, the window was broken and nothing was touched but the console. Things happen and you can misplace your phone. I would prefer a plan that has replacement of a lost or stolen phone. $120 is a cheap price to get your phone replaced.

  7. cds says

    Just a head’s up that Square Trade recently upped their deductible from $50 to $99 (I called and spoke to a customer service rep who said the change happened a few weeks ago.)

  8. ryanstevenson says

    Jas, this is one of the safest phones to have if you’re the victim of theft. Fingerprint scanner, plus iOS 7’s security features, plus you can wipe your phone remotely or track it’s location.

  9. Robin Fitzpatric. says

    I was actually looking for the answer to the point that waryofthefineprint raises. If you pay a 2 year contract price and need to replace your phone before the next “upgrade” is available, how much is reimbursed or covered? Say you pay $199 for your 5s, the same phone is somewhere around $600 without upgrade eligibility? I emailed squaretrade and got a very generic non-specific answer..I replied for clarification and am waiting to hear back.

    • JDE says

      It’s $99 on contract, but even without AppleCare, it’s $269 for a refurb (and I’ve heard they’ll even sometimes give you a new one if they don’t have a refurb available).

  10. Jennifer says

    Protect Your Bubble looked great – cheaper than Insurance via carrier. However, on the site, it does not say it covers loss/theft. Since that is one of the biggest reasons for me to have insurance for my family, no go. We will stick with the Carrier insurance as it seems to be the only one that covers loss/theft anymore, sadly.

  11. Hammour says

    People in the Middle East are sfr more spoiled and pampered, we charge our customers for iPhone 5s as low as 8% of their purchase value so am average of 50 $ that covers accidental damage for the first year with 25% deductible of repair amount, covers up to the total device purchase value & 0% deductible on electrical failures , extension of apple warranty , it also includes theft and fire accidents , we do not sell it directly to customers though, it is sold via retailers only.

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