When it comes to buying a computer, and the great Mac versus PC’s debate, there is very rarely a clear cut winner. After all, both sides have their plusses and minuses, and they also share something else: the potential for hard drive or mechanical failure. With PC’s, there are a variety of different tech support options available, but what about with Macbooks?
Enter AppleCare, one of the best tech and customer support programs in the world. Mind you, you’ll pay a pretty penny for this option, but for newly-purchased Macbooks (regular, Pro, and Air), this can be a huge blessing. So what is AppleCare exactly?
According to Apple’s website: “All Apple hardware comes with a one-year limited warranty and up to 90 days of complimentary telephone technical support. To extend your coverage further, purchase the AppleCare Protection Plan.”
This plan extends coverage for up to three years after the initial purchasing date, and you have an entire year to decide whether or not you’re going to buy it. After the one year limited warranty has expired, then you may no longer buy AppleCare.
There are many benefits to buying AppleCare before the opportunity goes away, of course. For one, the highly expensive parts, such as motherboards (which alone costs $1,000+ to replace) are completely covered if they fail under warranty. Just use the box Apple sends you and within a few short days, your laptop will be back, good as new. And this isn’t limited to Australia; Apple has offices all over the world to which you can send your Macbook to for repairs, free of charge. Nor is it limited to just the MacBooks, as accessories such as power adapters purchased with the product are fully covered as well. The phone support is top notch, whereas you have access to Apple experts and may ask any question regarding software or Apple products in general, and they will not get off the phone until your problem is resolved.
Aside from these fantastic benefits however, are some downfalls. The major pitfall of AppleCare is that accidents which you cause are not covered under this warranty. So, if you spill a drink and destroy the keyboard, good luck getting it fixed. Furthermore, AppleCare is essentially useless if you don’t normally keep MacBooks for more than one or two years (unless you’re looking to enhance the resale value, of course). Finally, it’s a common notion that insurance for electronics is a huge profit-maker for companies, because if they weren’t making money from them, then why would they offer insurance at all?
So what is the cost for all this? From the low range of $99.00 for three years for iPhones and iPads all the way up to $449.00 for the large screen MacBook Pros. Fortunately, online retailers offer these premiums for lower prices (you can find some for under $300 on eBay), so as long as you don’t purchase AppleCare directly from Apple, you should be good to go.
So, do you need AppleCare? That’s really a question only you can answer. Laptops are prone to more damage due to their portable nature, and while some people swear by it, others have never needed it in over a decade of Mac products ownership. If you would like that peace of mind, however, then AppleCare is definitely something you ought to look into when buying a computer.