applecare explainer
CNN  — 

Let’s face it: Accidents happen. Your cat knocks your Apple Watch off of the nightstand, shattering the screen when it hits the floor. Or you drop your phone as you get out of the car, destroying the back cover. The good news is broken Apple gadgets can more than likely be repaired. The bad news is it can cost a lot of money to get them repaired.

That’s where AppleCare comes, in and chances are you’ve heard of it.

What is AppleCare?

applecare+ logo

AppleCare is the standard warranty that every Apple product comes with. Typically, that includes 90 days of free product support (through phone, chat or in-store) and a one-year warranty.

AppleCare+, however, extends the warranty and service, and adds an insurance-like program to your Apple gear. Instead of the standard one-year warranty, AppleCare+ will extend your coverage based on the device you’re covering. For example, a Mac AppleCare+ plan extends your standard coverage to three years. An iPad Pro plan extends it to two years.

In addition to extending the standard Apple warranty, AppleCare+ also includes accidental coverage protection — meaning, should you accidentally drop an iPhone and break the screen or spill a cup of water all over your MacBook, you can get it repaired at a reduced price.

Let’s break down the potential savings: If you have an iPhone 12 and break the screen, Apple will charge you $279 to repair it out of warranty. With AppleCare+, that repair fee is reduced to just $29. Need a battery replacement for your iPhone? Out-of-warranty cost is $69, while the AppleCare+ cost is $0.

Any standard AppleCare+ plan doesn’t cover a lost or stolen device, but Apple offers AppleCare+ Theft and Loss for the iPhone, which provides even more coverage. The Theft and Loss version costs a little more, but instead of paying full price to replace a stolen iPhone, you’re looking at $149 to replace it.

You have to purchase AppleCare+ or AppleCare+ with Theft and Loss within 60 days of purchasing your Apple device. The cost for either AppleCare+ plan varies, based on the device you’re covering and whether or not you want the extra theft and loss protection. Below you’ll find pricing and more details for the various Apple products you can buy AppleCare+ for.

AppleCare+ for iPhone

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When it comes to Apple’s array of phones you’ll have a choice between AppleCare+ or AppleCare+ with Theft and Loss. Both cover cracked screens, bad pixels, a lame battery, broken backs or busted lenses. AppleCare+ with Theft and Loss will cover, as its name implies, a lost or stolen iPhone after you file a claim and pay a deductible. Keep in mind that in order for Apple to replace a lost device, you’ll need to have Find My enabled when the device goes missing.

AppleCare+ for the iPhone 12 lineup is $199, while all other iPhone models are $149. That’s for two years of coverage from the date of purchase, which has to happen within 60 days of you purchasing the phone.

You’ll get two claims per 12 months, with repair prices ranging from $0 to replace a bad battery to $29 to fix a cracked screen and $149 to replace a lost phone.

AppleCare+ for iPad

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You can add AppleCare+ to your iPad, iPad Mini, iPad Air or iPad Pro within 60 days of purchase. It’s $129 to cover an iPad Pro. AppleCare+ for all other iPad models is $69. That’s good for two years and covers two accidents — such as a broken display, water damage, etc. — every 12 months.

The benefit of AppleCare+ for the iPad is that it extends to your iPad accessories, such as the Apple Pencil and any Apple-branded keyboard. So if you crack your Apple Pencil in half while charging it, you’ll pay $29 to get it replaced.

Any accidental damage on your iPad will cost you $49 to get it repaired.

AppleCare+ for Mac

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AppleCare+ for Apple’s suite of Mac computers extends your coverage to three years, instead of one year that’s included with the purchase. Furthermore, it will cover any accidental damage to your Mac during that time. You get two claims every 12 months, which can include screen damage or a broken keyboard.

You’ll pay $99 to get the screen or other external damage fixed, or $299 to cover all issues. The cost of AppleCare+ is based on the type of Mac you have.

Here’s the cost of AppleCare+ for each Mac model:

As is the case with the rest of AppleCare+ offerings, you’ll need to add the plan to your device within 60 days of purchase.

AppleCare+ for Apple Watch

Apple Watch Series 6

You can get AppleCare+ for your Apple Watch that’ll extend coverage to two years from the purchase date. You get the same two instances of repair every 12 months like the rest of the AppleCare+ plans, with a flat $69 fee for repairing any accidental damage or battery issues. The price of AppleCare+ varies by the model of your Apple Watch, ranging from $49 to $79. Here’s how it breaks down by model.

You only have 60 days after buying your Apple Watch to purchase AppleCare+.

AppleCare+ for AirPods, AirPods Pro or AirPods Max

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When you consider the price of the AirPods and how easy they are to drop in the washer as you load laundry or for your dog to treat your shiny new AirPods Max as a chew toy, the cost of AppleCare+ doesn’t feel that steep. You can get AppleCare+ for the AirPods and AirPods Pro for $29, or the AirPods Max for $59.

You’ll get the standard two repairs within every 12 months, with the cost of that setting you back $29.

AppleCare+ for HomePod or HomePod Mini

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Apple’s HomePod and HomePod Mini also have AppleCare+ options. The bigger HomePod’s plan costs $39, with the Mini’s coverage plan priced at just $15. You’ll get two years of coverage and the standard two incidents every 12 months. The plan covers any accidental damage, such as a broken display, ripped power cord or water damage.

The service fee to get the HomePod Mini fixed is $15, while the standard HomePod will cost $39 for repair.

AppleCare+ for Apple TV

Apple TV 4K

The AppleCare+ plan for the Apple TV works a little differently in that it only extends Apple’s standard one-year warranty to two years. You won’t get any accidental damage coverage with the $29 plan; instead, if your Apple TV, Siri remote or power cable stop working within two years of purchase, Apple will replace it free of charge.

You have 12 months to purchase AppleCare+ for your Apple TV, as opposed to the 60-day limit like the rest of Apple’s device lineup.