This We Believe

Separated by Differences, United by Beliefs

Protect Yourself from Lemons

on February 20, 2013

In 7 years I damaged between ten and fifteen phones beyond repair; my phones have been fully submerged, the screens have been cracked, I even flattened one with my car, and that was before touch screens.

My first touch screen phone purchase was at an electronics store. So of course, while my delicate, high-tech, mini-computer was activating the sales representatives were pitching the ‘extended protection plan’ spiel. I planned on purchasing phone insurance anyway, so I listened intently while the sales associates compared this service to my carrier’s insurance.

I know what you’re thinking right now, I heard those news programs too. I wasn’t about to be taken advantage of, but they can’t all be bad, right? The problem is that these plans are offered on such a wide variety of products that it can be difficult to determine if the extended protection plan is a good buy. Uninformed or misinformed customers were persuaded into purchasing services they would never use. But that’s just it! I needed protection on this phone, especially with my track record.

I didn’t want to purchase this service and later realize that it wasn’t going to serve the purpose I intended, so I asked a lot of questions and read over the pamphlet.

“Wait, there’s no deductible?” I asked amazed and excited.

“Nope …And there’s no replacement limit.”

Well, I thought, this might be the better deal then. “OK, how much is this?” I accused.

I was satisfied with the depth and clarity of the knowledge the sales associates shared with me. So despite the stories I’ve heard about extended protection plans, I couldn’t pass up this screaming deal, and I bought it.

I was more responsible with this phone, mostly because it was more expensive, but I got a dud anyway. I am so thankful I took the time to listen, ask questions and compare service plans, because the charging port stopped working, a manufacturers defect that my carrier’s insurance would not have covered. I was able to swap out the phone, saving me the hassle of an unexpected $600 purchase, for damage that, for once, I didn’t cause.

As with any other purchase, I believe it is the consumer’s responsibility to know the available options and make an informed decision. I believe that extended protection plans are underestimated, because these services can provide a safety net which adds a sense of security to a high priced electronics purchase.

Isn’t that what we all want? To feel like we’ve got options, to feel protected, to have something we can rely on?


One response to “Protect Yourself from Lemons

  1. carlymcc says:

    I have to say, I was a little surprised by this “I Believe.” But after thinking about it, I realized that just because it wasn’t all touchy feely that doesn’t mean it lacks value. I thank the author for his advice. I’ll be sure to follow it!

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