How to Leverage AppleCare+ For a Bigger Payout

Megan Finnegan-Ratliff


Before refreshing the next fleet of Apple devices, there’s one simple thing that school districts can do to significantly increase the value of their fleet: leverage Apple Care+.

With Apple Care+, districts can send damaged iPad to Apple and receive new-in-box replacements of the same generation device. This can be done twice a year per device. There’s no charge to the districts; they’ve already paid for the service with their Apple Care+ fee.

Before refreshing a fleet, districts should leverage their Apple Care+ warranty and trade in all damaged devices. This can result in a significantly higher payout when trading in used devices.

Most buyback companies have a grading scale for used devices that take deductions for things like scratches, dents and cracked screens. One buyback company recently quoted prices for a used iPad 6th Generation that ranged from $205 for a “Grade A” device in top condition, to $20 for a “Grade F” device with a broken screen or other component, a $185 difference.

When you multiply that by dozens or even hundreds of devices, it can add up to a significant financial loss for schools.

We recently worked with one school district that refreshed almost 20,000 iPad. Before selling back the used devices, the district sent nearly 1,000 broken iPad in to Apple Care+ for replacement. Those devices netted the district an additional $140,000 at trade in.

If you plan to leverage Apple Care+ to replace broken iPad devices, here are some tips:

  1. Make sure you have Apple Care+ with no deductible. Plans with a $49 deductible are common, so ask your Apple rep if the deductible can be waived when you purchase the service.
  2. To make it even easier, find an Apple Authorized Service Provider to manage the process. These providers are paid a per device fee by Apple, making this service free to schools.
  3. Look for a buyback partner who will do this for you. Apple permits schools to make a one-time permanent transfer of their rights under the plan to a buyback company, who may pay a premium for devices that still are under Apple Care+.
  4. Act before your Apple Care+ plan ends. Once the plan expires, Apple no longer can exchange broken devices for new ones.