iPad Extended Warranty -- AppleCare vs AMEX
March 15, 2011 5:22 PM   Subscribe

Say I have an iPad. I decide not to get AppleCare, but I do get an extended warranty using my AMEX card. If my iPad has a problem at the 13 month mark (aka 1 month after the factory warranty expires) and needs to be replaced (which the Apple Store often will do for you), how do I invoke the AMEX card extended warranty so I don't have to pay for the refurbished replacement?

If I had AppleCare, the device is swapped out immediately. No problem.

Without AppleCare but WITH the AMEX extended warranty, what happens? Would Apple charge me for the refurbished item, and then would I get a credit from AMEX?
posted by patronuscharms to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: *I should say that if I had AppleCare, the device COULD BE swapped out immediately. Obviously I understand how the Genius Bar works. But, hypothetically speaking, how might this scenario play out, folks-who-have-experience-with-extended-warranties?
posted by patronuscharms at 5:26 PM on March 15, 2011

Your question is answered here:
You may also be asked to obtain a repair estimate. The program administrator will decide whether to have the item repaired or replaced, or to reimburse you up to the amount charged to the Card, and not to exceed the original purchase price.
posted by halogen at 5:44 PM on March 15, 2011

Response by poster: Having your iPad completely swapped out for a refurbished replacement does not equal a repair estimate, though. It's one of those special things that the Genius Bar can do. If that is the solution that the Genius Bar would provide me with if I had AppleCare, what would the comparable situation be if I just have the AMEX warranty? Would the Genius say, "Sucks for you, you don't have AppleCare so we can't do anything except tell you to buy an entirely brand new device" or would they say, "Go make a claim with AMEX, bring back the appropriate paperwork, and we'll take care of it"?
posted by patronuscharms at 6:07 PM on March 15, 2011

I believe it would be the first of your two scenarios- which is to say the payment is on you and the reimbursement is between you and the insurance company.
posted by sharkfu at 6:23 PM on March 15, 2011

Apple and the Genius Bar do not care about your Amex warranty. Any issues you have after the one year mark is not Apple's problem. You will have to get an estimate and give it to whomever the program administrator is, and then they'll decide to repair the item, replace the item or reimburse you for the original purchase. Halogen provides the answer straight from the horse's mouth.
posted by Brian Puccio at 6:31 PM on March 15, 2011

AmEx makes the process as painless as possible. When I had a broken product replaced, they didn't even ask for the replacement.
posted by stratastar at 6:39 PM on March 15, 2011

The Genius Bar doesn't typically have a problem with giving you an official estimate (printed on Apple letterhead) of the repair to hand over to insurance/warranty with full cost, etc.

It's worth mentioning that the difference between AppleCare and an Amex warranty is that AppleCare doesn't cover accidental damage.
posted by sleeping bear at 12:06 AM on March 16, 2011

seconding that amex is very good about their warranty. i have had my printer replaced twice (for the same accidental reason) and they never batted an eye. i believe at the time i was asked to send in my broken printer to amex claims only one of the times. i bought a new printer, provided them with the receipt, and i was then reimbursed.
posted by violetk at 6:09 AM on March 16, 2011

> It's worth mentioning that the difference between AppleCare and an Amex warranty is that AppleCare doesn't cover accidental damage.

Just wanted to note that AmEx covers accidental damage (and theft!) only for the first 90 days after purchase.

This is what my Costco AmEx benefits page says:

"Extended Warranty

Use your Card for your new purchases and have an extra layer of protection. The Extended Warranty* extends the terms of the original U.S. manufacturer's warranty for up to 1 additional year on eligible purchases with warranties of 5 years or less, when the purchase is charged to the Card. Coverage is limited to the actual amount charged to your Card for the item or $10,000, whichever is less.


Purchase Protection Plan

Shop with confidence with the Purchase Protection Plan, which protects eligible purchases made with the Card against accidental damage and theft for up to 90 days from the date of purchase."
posted by Dragonness at 10:21 AM on March 16, 2011

Response by poster: I spoke with a Genius at one of the local stores and the rundown is this:

Unless you have AppleCare, the Genius Bar cannot provide you with a product swap out after your initial factory warranty expires. They also cannot do anything with the AMEX extended warranty. In order to get your product replaced under the AMEX warranty, you have to go through a third party vendor contracted by AMEX, and that third party vendor requires you to send your malfunctioning Apple Product to them, and they send you a replacement (or fix the damage for free) after 7-10 days.

As such, paying the 80-100 bucks for AppleCare for any iPad means that you can get nearly instant results, whereas with the AMEX extended warranty, you're without your device for up to a week and a half. If the device can't be replaced or fixed and the Genius at the bar tells you you're better off buying a new one, then yeah, AMEX will reimburse you for the price of the product and you can put that money toward buying the newest generation device if you want to.

Ultimately, it looks like having both warranty options at your disposal is the best way to go.
posted by patronuscharms at 12:14 PM on March 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

Patronuscharms, just as a side note they can actually do a product swap out of warranty, as long as a replacement part is available. You just have pay for the replacement cost.

I just recently swapped out a 8 GB, 2nd gen iPod touch that was nearly 3 years out of warranty. They had a bunch of them in a drawer behind the Genius Bar, and I traded mine in and paid for it.

I went back a week later and swapped my mom's 6 year old iPod with a broken click wheel. They ordered the part to the store and it showed up in a couple days. I traded it in and paid the cost of replacement out of pocket again.

Don't know why they said they can't do it. We just got an Apple store pretty close to where I live and they told me they'll pretty much swap any mobile device they can still order in their system.
posted by howrobotsaremade at 9:05 AM on March 18, 2011

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