For small, expensive, often-dropped devices like cell phones, iPhone insurance is becoming an increasingly common add-on purchase. After all, if you spent $300-$400 on a phone, what's another $50 to ensure that it will keep working for the life of you cell phone contract?
Not from Apple
That thinking - and fear of needing to extend cell phone contracts to get new phones when old ones break - many people seek cell phone insurance. And, with the iPhone being one of the hottest phones on the market, many people are looking for iPhone insurance from Apple, AT&T or Verizon.
The only problem? While AT&T offers iPhone insurance, Apple doesn't sell it (though its AppleCare extended warranty does cover the iPhone) and Verizon's plan is expensive.
While Apple may not offer iPhone insurance, two of the three phone companies that offer the iPhone in the U.S. do.
AT&T now covers the iPhone with its standard phone insurance plans. Coverage runs $6.99/month and covers loss, damage, theft, and hardware failure, but limits you to two claims per 12-month period.
Deductible: $50, $125, or $199 deductible per approved claim, depending on device
Sprint apparently does not offer its insurance on the Phone, instead suggesting that its iPhone customer purchase Apple's AppleCare Plus extended warranty.
Verizon has far and away the most expensive iPhone insurance plan, at $10.99/month. The plan covers loss, theft, and damage (including water), and limits you to two claims per 12-month period.
Deductible: $169 for 16GB iPhone, $199 for 32GB iPhone
Traditional Insurance Companies
If you're in search of iPhone insurance, try the companies you already get insurance from. Many insurance companies that offer homeowner's, renter's, or other kinds of property/casualty policies can cover the iPhone under a "personal articles policy." Rates reportedly run in the US$15-$40/year range.
Seeing a market opportunity, new companies have stepped into the space. When considering these companies, be sure to do your homework: check out how long they've been around; search the web for reviews of them, as well as complaints or problems; make sure they're going to be around when you need help.
Among the iPhone insurance companies offering policies are:
Asurion (Download at iTunes), which provides insurance for many kinds of cell phones, also offers an iPhone plan. With a deductible that can equal the cost of a new iPhone and a $12/month fee, it's probably not the best option.
Have you used Asurion? Write a review.
Ensquared offers up to 2 years coverage for $89-$99. Restrictions include that the iPhone must be less than 90 days old and that the number of claims per term is limited.
Have you used Ensquared? Write a review.
GoCare offers iPhone insurance that covers water and traditional damage, data recovery, support for unlocked phones, and even offers loaner phones. It does not, however, cover theft. The service runs $39-$165 for one to three years of coverage, depending on your iPhone model (original model excluded).
Have you used GoCare? Write a review.
Worth Ave. Group offers 1-3 years of coverage against damage, theft, and acts of God. It does not cover data and doesn't cover iPhones stolen out of unlocked personal cars with no signs of forced entry. Policies run $55-$267, depending on model and length of coverage.
Have you used Worth Ave. Group? Write a review.
Last updated: Dec. 20, 2010
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