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Home / NewTech / Apple iPhone Upgrade Program: That's how it works

Apple iPhone Upgrade Program: That's how it works


James Martin / CNET

This story is part of Apple Event our full coverage of the latest news from Apple's headquarters.

New iPhone models are on their way – Read more about the iPhone 11 and 11 Pro models . It's basically the "iPhone as a Service" package: instead of paying the full value upfront or monthly payments for owning a particular phone after 2 years, the iPhone upgrade program guarantees you every year new iPhone. Of course you will pay a subscription fee for this privilege for the foreseeable future.

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How does the iPhone upgrade program work?

You buy an iPhone from Apple – personally in the Apple Store, the Apple Online Store, or the Apple Store App – and you agree to pay it out within 24 months. After you have made half of these payments, you are entitled to a free upgrade. After 12 months, you can exchange your current phone for a new model. The watch restarts with the 24 months of payments and the authorization to upgrade after 12 of them have been made.

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Why buy from Apple instead of a mobile service?

Apple sweetened the deal by taking over AppleCare Plus, its insurance, and its extended warranty program, which would otherwise cost $ 7.99 per month for the iPhone 11 or $ 9.99 per month for the iPhone 11 Pro or Pro Max , The service doubles the standard warranty from one year to two years. However, this is less of a concern if you want to trade your phone after the first year. The true value of AppleCare Plus is protection against accidental damage. You get two accident insurance to replace your phone (each costs $ 99 but is cheaper than buying a new phone). You can also replace one or two cracked screens for $ 29 per incident. The telephone support is extended with AppleCare Plus from the usual 90 days to two years.

How much does it cost?

The price range extends from $ 35.33 per month for the 64GB iPhone 11 to $ 68.66 per month for the 512GB iPhone 11 Pro Max.

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What about AppleCare Plus with theft and loss?

If you're less worried about dropping or damaging your phone than about losing or stealing it, you can pay a little bit more per month to upgrade to AppleCare Plus with Theft and loss coverage , This adds $ 4.16 to your Monthly Upgrade Program bill, and you can pay a small deductible to replace a lost or stolen phone rather than paying the full cost of the replacement. Depending on the model, the deductible varies from $ 199 for the iPhone 8 and $ 229 for the iPhone XR and iPhone 11 and $ 269 for the iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max.

How do I pay?

You need a credit card to sign up, at least in the US. In the US, Apple uses the Citizens Bank for the installment loan. To qualify, a valid credit card issued in the USA is required.

Is there an age limit?

Yes. Sorry, kids, you have to be 18 years old to apply. (And considering the prices of the new Pro models, I hope you start being nicer to your parents.)

How do I exchange with my current phone?

You can take it to an Apple Store and exchange it. But you can also save the trip and buy it from the Apple Online Store or the Apple Store App. When you order an iPhone online from Apple, it comes with a trade kit that allows you to package your suddenly outdated phone and send it back to Apple. You must return it to Apple within 14 days.

What if my current iPhone is broken?

According to Apple, your current iPhone must be in "good physical and operational condition." That is, it should:

  • Be able to turn on and hold a charge
  • Have an intact and working display

I have not made 12 payments on my current phone yet. Can I upgrade anyway?

Yes, but it will cost you. If you've made at least six monthly payments on your current phone, you can pay the difference between your current balance and the total amount for 12 payments to fast-forward the watch and get a new iPhone.

Do I have to upgrade?

No, not all! You do not have to upgrade. If you are satisfied with your current phone, you can continue using it and continue to pay it off. After 24 months you have paid it off and can continue using it without monthly payment, or you can flip it over and sell it to finance the cost of a new phone when you're ready.

Are there any other benefits of the iPhone upgrade program?

Yes! You now also get a free year of Apple TV Plus with the new iPhone.

Originally published 2 years ago.

Update, September 11, 2019: Information about new iPhone models from 2019 has been added.

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