Consult with Lloyd for any kind of computer purchase, RAID setup, backup strategy, Photoshop optimization, etc.
MPG strongly recommends the purchase of AppleCare with any Apple laptop costing $2.5K or more, because the chances of breakage are far higher than with a desktop computer. Of my 3 daughter’s laptops, 1 failed its display just at the 3 year mark, and Apple covered the repair in full. One in three failed is not a good track record. OK, so that is not statistically valid, but the point is college student laptops get more abuse than if I were using one.
For a desktop computer, chances of failure are much lower. Still, if the computer is an expensive one ($3K on up), then with Apple’s pathetic 1-year factory warranty*, the smart move is to get AppleCare coverage for repairs for damage (though there are deductibles for damage ranging from $99 to $299).
Take note of the relative cost of AppleCare+ for your particular model configuration—the cost is less for lower-end models, but is fixed for the model, so a $3K configuration will cost the same as a maxed-out $6K configuration for the same model. It’s one more way Apple makes huge profits while making you feel good about it. But it’s a much less appealing proposition for entry-level configurations.
* A huge price premium vs alternatives, yet one backed by a minimum-length warranty. A company that wants to foster goodwill and long term customer satisfaction won’t rip-off its customers like that, instead offering 3 to 5 year warranties on its high-end gear as standard, such as OWC. But the Apple aura commands its buyers to be happy about this situation.
Extend your AppleCare
The good news for high-end Mac users is that in most countries, Apple will now allow you to extend your AppleCare coverage beyond year three (3 years from purchase). But it costs you $399 (now with damage protection as AppleCare+), a large increase over the $269 or $299 it used to cost only a few years ago. And if you start out with a annually-renewed plan, it ends up costing you more for three years. On the flip side, if you dispose of it by year two, it's a win on cost.
If you buy and keep computers in the $4K to $18K (my 2019 Mac Pro) range, then AppleCare+ is a smart move.
In Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States
- If you paid upfront for an AppleCare+ plan for your iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch, you might be able to purchase new coverage that renews monthly.
- If you paid upfront for an AppleCare+ plan for your Mac, you might be able to purchase new coverage that renews annually.
Purchase the new coverage within 30 days after your original coverage ends. To find out if you can purchase the new coverage, go to mysupport.apple.com and follow the onscreen instructions. The new coverage automatically renews until canceled. Your plan coverage may continue beyond 24 or 36 months, on a monthly or annual basis, until canceled.
While I have AppleCare on my 2019 Mac Pro (purchased February 2020), I find myself wondering whether in February of 2023 I will be using it, or using some Apple M2 iMac 5K kind of computer—very likely. Still, I’ll pay $149 a year to cover my 2019 Mac Pro until I no longer have any use for it.