To the delight of budget-conscious Apple fans, the company launched a new iPhone Upgrade Program at its fall event on Sept. 9 that starts at just $32 a month – but what is it, and what do you get for your money?
The Fine Print
If you’re tired of your iPhone becoming dated every September, this plan might be for you. The iPhone Upgrade Program will give you a new iPhone every year, which is unlocked – you can choose your carrier. You’ll also receive AppleCare+ ($129 value for 6S/6S Plus, $99 for older models) under the program, which extends your one-year hardware repair coverage to two years (But if you get a new one every year, does it really matter?). There's a $99 deductible if you need to use it, though. Other features you also receive under AppleCare+ include:
- Battery coverage
- Accessory support and replacement
- iCloud and Apple-made app support
- Wi-Fi technical support
- Screen damage
- Accidental drops
- Liquid damage
To participate in the program, you need to upgrade to the latest iPhone, which is now the iPhone 6S or iPhone 6S Plus. Upon doing so, you will be able to pay monthly installments over the course of 24 months (12 payments), courtesy of Citizens One personal loans. If you don’t qualify, this may not be an option for you. In any case, here is how the prices break down.
- iPhone 6S 16GB: $32.41 per month
- iPhone 6S 64GB: $36.58 per month
- iPhone 6S 128 GB: $40.75 per month
- iPhone 6S Plus 16GB: $36.58 per month
- iPhone 6S Plus 64GB: $40.75 per month
- iPhone 6S Plus 128GB: $44.91 per month
Is It Worth It?
Unless you’re absolutely in love with the iPhone, it may not be worth it. In some instances, you may be adding the cost of an entire cell phone bill on top of your existing one. While it’s nice to have peace of mind, knowing you’ll never be without the latest iPhone, I hardly find it worth the price.
Buying Into the Hype
Whether you’re into the new iPhone 6S or not, here is what some of the Twitter universe said when we asked them if the iPhone Upgrade Program is worth the enrollment.
— Jim English (@englishjg) September 9, 2015
@slickdeals or, you could just buy more reasonably priced phones like the Moto X new every year outright. Starting at $32 is not a 6S+.
— Will S (@willsours) September 9, 2015
@slickdeals I dunno, its already obvious that nobody owns their device, but is rather licensing it
— [Meowstic] Ωmegα_2 (@Dr_Vulpine) September 9, 2015
And if you’re going with the program, there are trade-in deals to be found. Gazelle, for instance, will offer $1 more than your carrier or Apple for the trade-in value of your iPhone 5S or iPhone 6.
Or you could always go with the not-so-new (but still pretty functional) iPhone 6 if you have an old model. Best Buy and Target are slashing $100 off the price of their iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices. How willing are you to save a few bucks?
Shortly after Apple announced the iPhone Upgrade Program, the major carriers announced they would offer similar programs as well. Here's how they compare to one another if you were to get a 16GB iPhone 6S, excluding taxes.
Would you consider enrolling in the iPhone Upgrade Program or is having the newest tech not that important to you? Let us know in the comments!
Image courtesy of Apple
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