Is the Apple Care Protection Plan worth its money for MacBook or MacBook Pro?

in General Discussion edited January 2014
I am thinking of buying a MacBokk Pro. The Apple Care Protection Plan is very expensive compared to the price of the computer (about nearly 20%).

I expect that a high quality machine runs at least 3 years and longer without any problems. The chance that the machine gets broken should be very low. So in my opinion the price for the protection plan is calculated too high or the machines have a very low quality that the risk is high to have a broken machine in the first 3 years. (Even with the included telephone support and an extra piece of software the plan is very expensive).

For that price apple can replace nearly every 5th machine which is financed by the customers!

How are the experiences of other users?


  • Reply 1 of 6
    My advice: always get AppleCare when you have a notebook! Computer companies always charge a fixed amount of money for any repair that will occur after the warranty period is over (i.e. after one year). So replacing the hard drive costs as much as replacing the screen or replacing the main logicboard. That fixed amount of money used to be around 750 USD, maybe it has come down a bit.

    As all notebooks contain delicate parts that usually don't last as long as parts for desktop computers (and as Apple does not produce them but rather buys all those parts like hard drives and screens from other manufacturers), the chance is high that during those three years in which you will have the extended AppleCare warranty, something might break. On my PowerBook 12", for example, the hard drive died after only eight months after purchase, and on the same notebook, the latch which securely closes the screen broke (a part that costs 2c), and to "repair" it, they had to replace the whole frame of the screen. My brother's iBook from 2001 also had a bad hard drive after exactly 13 months - that one was not covered by the standard warranty any more and it cost a fortune to fix, much more than the AppleCare extended warranty would have cost in the first place.

    So yes, get AppleCare, you won't regret it in case something goes wrong with your notebook. We all do, of course, not hope that you will ever need it, but you never know. But isn't that the case with all insurance plans?

    One nice thing is: you can buy and activate AppleCare anytime during the first year after you buy the notebook, so you don't have to buy it right away in the beginning!
  • Reply 2 of 6
    Very simple answer: YES.

    Longer version: Don't even consider not doing so.
  • Reply 3 of 6
    I thought the same when I first purchased Applecare for my iBook.

    My screen had just stopped working, and though I was still under warranty, Apple would charge me about $70 (£35.00) to take a look at it, which would be refunded if the problem was a warranty issue. Instead I just went straight for the Applecare.

    Fast forward about a year later.

    My hard drive is dying, and my iBook wont boot up, so I phone Apple and they arrange a repair. The guy asks me if there's anything else wrong with the device, so I mention that there's a scuff on the screen, (kind of looked like a bunch of dead pixels, black when there's a white background, white when the monitor is off) and there's a couple of cracks around the frame of the screen. None of which I considered a warranty fault. I even pointed out to the guy that I didn't expect it to be fixed as it was accidental damage and not an actual fault.

    They returned my iBook with a brand new screen, new frame, new logic board, new reed (connects the logic board to the screen I think) and the new hard disk I needed.

    Buy it. I can guarantee you will not regret it. Even if you never need it, it's still there. A few hundred for peace of mind isn't all that expensive.
  • Reply 4 of 6
    Here's another thread on the same subject.
  • Reply 5 of 6
    tkntkn Posts: 224member
    I have a pretty simple set of criteria for extended warranties:

    1. Portable

    2. It has moving pieces

    3. 1st generation product

    4. warranty price < about 20%

    5. I couldn't live without it for more than a few days

    So a CD changer would get it, but a flat screen TV wouldn't. A MacBook would definitely get it because of 1 and 2.

    The only thing I don't bother with is for cellphones and that is because they charge too much. At $5 a month, it is too much for a cheap phone ($60 for a phone I could buy off contract for $150, no thanks)

    Of course AppleCare is pretty crappy, it is not like it is on-site, nor guaranteed quick turnaround, and they make you pay for backing up your hard drive before repair and make no guarantees whatsoever. But then, of course, #5 applies...
  • Reply 6 of 6
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member

    AppleCare is pretty crappy, it is not like it is on-site, nor guaranteed quick turnaround, and they make you pay for backing up your hard drive before repair.

    They can make simple repairs in the Apple Store, if you have one nearby. As far as the turnaround that depends on the repair. Its more efficient for Apple to have repairs consolidated in the same place.

    At this point it should be pretty elementary knowledge to know you should back up your own hard drive. Apple charging for it forces people to do it themselves.
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