The Benefits of AppleCare

Ben Greiner -

The Benefits of AppleCare

Although most Apple hardware is typically rock-solid, occasional issues are unavoidable. We've spent many hours (since 1998!) working to support both the AppleCare Protection Plan (APP) and out of warranty (OOW) devices. During this time we've come to appreciate the benefits of AppleCare.

We've created this article to share examples of how APP is beneficial, and example costs associated with repairing OOW devices. If you're a Pro Support client, contact us regarding any potential repairs. We're authorized to perform most AppleCare repairs (although sometimes it's best to send it back to Apple). We can help you decide what's best and most efficient. 

Situation 1
Calling Apple for Technical Support:

  • APP - Covered. Providing the call is about Apple-branded equipment. (Of course, we recommend our Pro Support Clients contact our Support Desk rather than AppleCare. It saves time and we provide support well beyond the Apple brand.)
  • First 90 Days of Ownership - One support instance, same rules as with APP.
  • Outside 90 Days of Ownership - $49/instance 

Situation 2
An Apple-branded peripheral has failed (power adapter, keyboard, mouse):

  • APP - Covered. AppleCare typically covers the cost of Apple-branded components providing they are used with an AppleCare covered device. Cinema Displays are the exception — they must be purchased with a Pro model machine to be covered. (Or purchase separate Cinema Display AppleCare.) Any peripheral that is damaged is considered to be OOW.
  • OOW - Cost can be slightly reduced (~15%) by trading in your old component for a service part during a Genius Bar appointment (service parts come with only 90-days Limited Warranty). The only other option is to replace the component at the full retail price. 

Situation 3
An Apple computer has a failed hardware component and the machine is in pristine condition:

  • APP - Covered. Apple is able to perform all repairs in-house, as well as send portables to a repair facility. All costs are completely covered, and (although it's rare) we've even seen Apple replace devices that had more than three major repairs with a brand new device!
  • OOW - Apple typically performs component isolated repairs in-house at the cost of the parts and labor (a must for desktops). Portables are shipped out at a flat rate to repair all hardware issues ($280 for 11" and 13" models, $310 for 15" and 17" models). All costs are billed per instance, and work is covered for 90-days.

Situation 4
An Apple computer has a failed hardware component and the machine has a cosmetic abrasion:

This is where the situation gets tricky. Although the accidental damage is not covered under any circumstance, the technician is able to work with different repair options based upon coverage.

  • APP - Covered. If it appears the machine can be repaired in-house, and providing the technician doesn't think that the damage correlates with the failed component. Example: We had a machine that had a failed FireWire port but there was damage on the display housing. The technician was able to repair the machine free of charge as the damage on the display most likely didn't cause the FireWire port to fail.
  • OOW - We've found that the computer can be repaired either in-house at the cost of parts and labor, or can be sent off for a flat rate, tiered repair. In the same example outlined above, our out of warranty repair price for the FireWire port would have been >$1,000 performed in-house (Apple parts are expensive!), or $1,240 to repair the machine at the repair facility. (The repair facility cannot do partial repairs like the Apple Store.)
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