When the iPhone first came out, AT&T decided not to include it in the list of devices they would cover with optional accident insurance. There was speculation as to the reasons, but the bottom line was still: if you broke your iPhone you’d be responsible for the full replacement cost. Even when the cost dropped to $400 for a first time purchase the replacement cost is still $500. That lower price is just a promo for new customers. An expensive toy to break!
I purchased an iPhone 3g the morning of July 11th, 2008 and it was love at first sight and we had a great honeymoon. But then I took the phone to the state fair up in Timonium, MD mid-summer where it succumbed to the centrifugal force of one of the amusement rides and the screen glass cracked. Phone still worked, but glass shards prevented easy use of the touch screen digitizer.
Normal computer insurance providers like SafeCo or home owners insurance would not cover the loss. What to do?
BestBuy’s plan is only available for phones purchased in-store and their rates ($15/month) is more expensive than SquareTrade where an 8 gig iPhone 3g will run you $5 / month and the 16 gig model $6 / month.
Please note that your credit card MAY provide some protection as noted at iPhone Atlas where they have a good survey of insurance options and where to buy new digitizers or glass screens. (I bought a new glass screen and installed it myself, not for the feint hearted!). You can also purchase an Apple Care plan for the iPhone but it simply extends the warrenty and does not cover accidental damage. iPhone Atlas lists WirelessSafegaurd.com as an insurance provider but I do not see this device in their list of supported smart phones.
$5 or $6 / month for iPhones within first 30 days of original purchase (any outlet).
If you are a klutz or know an iPhone owner who is, seriously check out these insurance options! The SquareTrade plan also covers battery problems. You and only you can decide if such a plan is worthwhile for you. Both of these options were not available to me.
If you have any experience with either of these extended warranty / insurance providers please leave it below in the comments section!
All information below directly from SquareTrade.
- Covers both accidents (drops and spills) and normal use failures including battery life.
- Pays you full replacement cost if iPhone can’t be fixed – up to $399 on the 8GB and $499 on the 16GB
What is covered:
- 2 years of coverage (or more) The SquareTrade iPhone warranty covers your iPhone for 2 years, starting on the date of purchase. You have the option to purchase a 3rd year of coverage for a bit more.
- Accidental Damage from Handling (ADH) 80% of all iPhone failures reported to SquareTrade are caused by accidents. The SquareTrade iPhone warranty is the only coverage option that protects against drops, spills, and other accidents!
- Deductible: There is a $50 deductible when claiming on an accidentally damaged item (e.g. drops, spills). If your issue falls under the standard warranty terms (i.e., a mechanical or electrical failure), no deductible applies.
- Exclusions: There is a 30-day exclusion window after you first purchase your item. ADH does not include loss, willful damage or damage occurring through gross misuse of the item. The damage must have occurred unintentionally while the item was being used as intended.
- Extended coverage of the manufacturer’s warranty The SquareTrade iPhone warranty also extends the same coverage as the manufacturer’s warranty. This covers all mechanical and electrical problems that arise out of normal use. This includes most hardware failures and power/charging failures.
- No deductible: If your iPhone fails because of a manufacturer defect, there is NO deductible to claim.
- Battery: If the iPhone battery life drops below 50% of the original, it’s eligible for a replacement.