New iPhone buyers can buy an iPhone warranty easier thanks to a longer AppleCare+ purchase period. Apple now lets iPhone and iPad buyers purchase the AppleCare+ extended warranty for up to 60 days after buying the device, double the original 30 day window that Apple offered for the last several new iPhone release dates.
AppleCare+ is the official iPhone warranty offered through Apple. The $99 extended iPhone warranty covers telephone and genius bar support and two accidental damage claims for a two-year period. This includes drops and water damage. There is a $79 service fee for any accidental damage claims.
The move makes it easier for users to buy an iPhone warranty on a iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c or iPhone 4s that they purchase from a retailer that does not sell the AppleCare+ warranty. This also comes just months ahead of a rumored iPhone 6 release.
Until recently the AppleCare+ was an option that users could only purchase within 30 days of buying a new iPhone or iPad, but as 9to5Mac discovered, the AppleCare+ window is double. If you buy the iPhone from Apple you can add AppleCare+ at the time of checkout, but many carriers and stores like Best Buy or RadioShack prefer to sell their own warranties.
If you want to buy the iPad or iPhone warranty from Apple you need to take the device in to an Apple store for a visual inspection or call Apple and run a remote diagnostic as well as submit proof of purchase details to make sure the iPhone isn’t already broken and that it was purchased recently. AppleCare+ does not cover used iPhones.
An AppleCare+ plan covers the following items;
- Battery (if it holds less than 50% of the charge it should)
- Earphones, charger and charging cable
- two accidental damage claims
The iPad coverage handles the same type of incidents, but the accidental damage fee is $49. Both of these options boost the standard 1 year warranty our to two years and 90 days of phone support out to two years as well.
If your iPad or iPhone is broken while under AppleCare+ protection you can mail it in, carry it in or use an express replacement service to have a new iPhone mailed out before the old one leaves your possession to minimize the time you are without an iPhone.
Gotta Be Mobile readers chose AppleCare+ as one of the top iPhone warranty and insurance offerings to buy when the iPhone 5s came out. For everything AppleCare+ does cover, it does not include coverage for loss or theft. For that users need to buy a more expensive iPhone insurance plan.
Carriers sell iPhone insurance plans for $168 to $270 and services like Protect Your Bubble offer plans for $143. These also include higher deductibles, up to $199 depending on the iPhone and service you choose. If you are concerned about loss or theft, AppleCare+ is not the best option.
If you don’t need insurance, SquareTrade is another popular iPhone warranty that covers accidental damage as well. SquareTrade offers a monthly $5 plan, two years for $99 or three years for $129. There is a $75 deductible to each of these plans. SquareTrade offers next day replacement, similar to Apple’s express replacement service and even lets users walk in to an Apple Store or a local repair shop and get their device fixed right away and then get reimbursed. For users that live hours from an Apple Store this is an option to consider.
While AppleCare+ is only available for new iPhone purchases, SquareTrade sells a different plan through an app that addresses these users. Right now SquareTrade only sells the iPhone warranty for 30 days from the date of purchase, but this move could push it out further.