Is That Extended Warranty Worthwhile?

As the capabilities of portable electronic devices increase, so do our investments. Whether you pay entirely up front or distribute the cost across months, it’s important to consider the value of your device and if it’s worth laying out more cash to protect it against mishaps.

Warranty Vs. Insurance

Manufacturers offer an initial warranty, usually for one to two years, with the clock starting at purchase. However, this only protects against problems caused by the manufacturer. It doesn’t cover accidents, loss or theft, although you might be able to send it back for software issues.

An extended warranty usually covers an additional one to two years; it doesn’t safeguard anything beyond the original warranty.

On the other hand, insurance underwrites clumsiness and other misfortunes.

Are your previous devices still working?

Do you have a desk drawer full of useless phones? This could be a sign that you live in conditions that are tough on electronics, or that your lifestyle and habits warrant additional protection. Evaluate the reason for the demise of previous gear. If your phones are accident-prone, an insurance program may be worthwhile.

You might not need insurance if you have a track record of impeccable electronic care. Keep the most recent phone as a backup, and sell the rest. You can sell used electronics on eBay, but these are often tricky items to list; buyers have almost two months to use the item before returning because it doesn’t work as described. It’s difficult to prove who is at fault, and eBay tends to side with the buyer in these cases.

Selling equipment to a reliable third party like iParts & Phone Repair gives you an easy option to cash in on both working and broken equipment. Experts can sometimes resuscitate damaged electronics, or at least reuse parts.

Coverage Questions

Find out the true cost of the plan; a typically high deductible plus monthly service fee can add up to the original cost of the phone. There are also limits to how often you can replace your smartphone or tablet.  As an option to manufacturer, wireless carrier, or distributor plans, consider one of the many third-party insurance carrier plans. Many offer better coverage with a lower total cost.

If you’re seriously considering an extended warranty or insurance plan, read the fine print. Search for reviews online that will give you a good indication if there is worthwhile.

Protection Alternatives

A cheaper option is a durable, waterproof case, especially if you are a life-prone individual. Tracking apps can help you find a misplaced or stolen phone. And check with your credit card company: many include coverage beyond the original warranty for electronics purchased with their card.

Even with the high price of portable devices, the subsequent cost of additional protection is probably not worth it for most people. If you can’t use your phone any longer due to accident or loss, it could be more cost effective to buy a used replacement until you’re due for a new one. If the phone isn’t working, it’s worth it to send it to us for a free evaluation. Let us surprise you!