October 27, 2017
Apple’s iPhone X Repair Fee is Over Half the Cost of the Phone
Apple’s iPhone X is supposed to represent the future of technology. Unfortunately, it appears that future isn’t going to be one any of us can afford. The company’s service pricing page for its upcoming phone makes it clear that anyone who breaks their iPhone X can look forward to paying an arm and a leg to have it fixed.
The iPhone X’s repair fees are enormous. If you crack the screen, you’ll have to pay Apple $279 for a new phone. If you break anything else, including the back of the device, you’ll have to pony up $549. This huge leap in repair costs is both a blatant attempt to force people to use AppleCare+ and an unprecedented increase even compared to Apple’s previous products. Apple’s limited warranty provides protection against internal defects, but doesn’t cover a cracked back or any other damage caused by the end user.
Here’s how the various iPhones stack up as far as out-of-warranty repairs. First, here’s the small-screen devices:
The price to repair a screen has grown by 1.16x over the past few years, but any other problem will run you 1.3x more on an iPhone 8 than an iPhone SE. How do the big-phone figures look?
From the iPhone 6 Plus to the iPhone 8, the cost of a screen repair has only risen by $20, just like the smaller screen smartphones. The iPhone X’s screen repair now costs 1.65x as much, while repairing literally anything else on the phone will cost you over $500 if you don’t have AppleCare+. In fact, you can buy an iPhone SE for $200 less than you’ll pay to fix the cracked back on an iPhone X. Let that sink in a moment.
And the hits keep coming. Want AppleCare+ for the iPhone X? That’s $199, compared to $149 for the iPhone 6s, 7 Plus, and iPhone 8 Plus and $129 for the iPhone 6s, iPhone 7, and iPhone 8.
Even buying AppleCare+ doesn’t keep you from paying through the nose to repair the device — you can look forward to screen repairs at $29 and “other” repairs at $99. Normally extended warranties aren’t worth the money, but Apple has managed to hit on a great way to monetize them — charge so much for out-of-warranty repairs that paying the company another few hundred dollars is the only sane thing to do.
The iPhone X went on pre-order today. Estimated ship times are already 5-6 weeks away. Given the colossal cost of repairing the iPhone X, ET strongly recommends anyone considering one of these devices buy a very good case. $549 to repair a cracked back (and the back does not count as a screen) is just absurd. Apple’s increased AppleCare+ pricing is either the result of its own manufacturing prices (in which case it represents consumer-hostile decision making) or an attempt to channel more revenue into Apple’s own coffers. Either way, the iPhone X is looking like an increasingly bad deal.