Updated 20 May, 2013, 2:25 pm IST
Have you insured your phone yet?
| by Priyanka Tilve
Typically, with any electronic gadget you buy, you will get a one-year warranty from the manufacturer. In case there is a glitch in your device, a software malfunction or any other problem during this period, the warranty will ensure that the same is taken care of without you having to shell out a single penny. However, if you have noticed, it’s usually after a year that problems actually start creeping in, and that’s when you may need that warranty the most. Also, the warranty provided by the manufacturer doesn’t cover any damage to screen, accidental damage or even liquid damage. And there are no prizes for guessing that these damages top the list of woes of smartphone or tablet owners. So wouldn’t it be nice if you had a warranty plan that would cover these areas too?
Fortunately, recognising this need of the smartphone owners, several third party vendors have entered the field and are offering what is called as extended warranty. Though this concept is highly popular in the West, it is still finding its legs in India.
How it works?
You can avail these extended warranty plans provided you have a valid bill of purchase. The cost of the plan will depend on the price of your handset. For instance, if your handset is worth Rs 18,000, then you will have to shell out approximately Rs 1,000 to get an extended warranty. The lower the cost of the handset, the lower the amount you have to pay. This is a one-time payment you make towards the extended warranty and in most cases, the one-year warranty begins after the expiration of the warranty provided by the manufacturer. However, even if that’s the case, you will have to buy an extended warranty plan soon after you purchase your device. Usually, you will have to buy a plan within a month or two of buying your device and you will need the valid bill and invoice of the purchase. Unfortunately, if you have purchased your phone from the grey market, without bill and warranty, then you cannot opt for extended warranty.
Just like you would go through the terms and conditions before buying an insurance policy, you have to read the details of what is being covered under the warranty. Generally, it will cover the same things that the standard warranty from the manufacturer covers. This means that the accessories won’t be a part of the coverage and neither will any physical or liquid damage to screen or the device. You can buy these extended warranties online. Currently there are three players who offer the same – GadgetCops, WarrantyBazaar, Onsite Care. Even The Mobile Store offers extended warranty plans, but these are limited to phones bought from their online site or their retail outlet.
Amongst all the players in the market offering extended warranty, what’s unique to GadgetCops is the fact that their extended warranty plan offers coverage for damage to the screen arising out of liquid damage or physical damage. Here it’s important to note that when they say protection against liquid damage, what won’t be covered is the damage to the battery, but they will repair your motherboard and even the screen. This is not something that is covered by even the manufacturer’s warranty. GadgetCops offers a two-year protection plan that works at two levels. During the first year, it will cover accidental and liquid damage, and in the second year, the extended warranty that is similar to the one offered by the manufacturer kicks in. Currently, GadgetCops has physical presence in six cities, including Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
GadgetCops covers damage to screen caused by liquid spill
If you buy a protection plan from GadgetCops, then their executive will pick your damaged device from you, get it serviced and drop it off as well. This saves you the hassle of making a trip to the authorised service centres, not to mention the serpentine queues. However, if you are based in cities other than those mentioned above, then you need not fret, as the services of GadgetCops are pan India. It has tie-ups with courier services and they will have your device picked up and delivered. You can buy the protection plan online from SnapDeal. Before you buy their protection plan, especially if your phone is a couple of months old, then their executive will thoroughly check your device for any glitches or other wear and tear.
Rohit Agrawal, founder of GadgetCops, says that he wants to standardise the whole process of servicing devices. Speaking about the benefits, he says, “We have tie-ups with the authorized service centers of all handset manufacturers, so we get priority when it comes to repairs. This lessens the time taken for repairs. And we also get the best price, in case of some repairs that are not covered under the standard warranty. Also, the customer is saved the hassles of making several trips to the service center. Additionally, we have our own state-of-art service centers where we carry out repairs, using genuine parts that we source from the service centres.”
Currently, their plans are limited only to smartphones and tablets; however, they soon plan to extend it to other consumer electronics to include laptops, cameras and even TV. Also on agenda is establishing their physical presence in other cities.
Another soon to be launched service is Onsite Secure. Just like GadgetCops, it provides you with a protection plan of two years, coverage against spills and drops, and the pick-up/drop facility. Even their protection plan works on similar lines to the one offered by GadgetCops. However, Onsite Secure is not just limited to smartphones and tablets; it provides extended warranty plans for laptops and cameras as well. The range of plans that they offer for phones are from Rs 490 to Rs 5390. Basically, the price will be in the 6-10 percent range in all cases. Onsite Secure plan will be offered for an additional year for phones and tablets and for two additional years in case of laptops and cameras. In case of smartphones, Onsite will provide you with a standby device while your handset is getting repaired. They have a tie-up with the authorised service centres across all major cities where the devices are serviced and repaired. Currently, they have a presence in cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai and Bangalore. In the next six months, they plan to expand their service to other cities in India.
Soon to be launched Onsite Secure has a innovative No-lemon policy
Speaking about the services offered by Onsite Secure, Pratik Yagnik, Business Head - Onsite Secure, says, “Customers can buy EW from our website from March 25th. We will also be collaborating with our existing retail channel partners who will sell EW as an add-on service for their products. Our plans are designed to be extremely comprehensive. They will cover all mechanical, electrical and hardware failures. They will cover accidental and liquid damage even while the product is under manufacturer’s warranty. We also offer a 'No Lemon' policy whereby if a product requires a repair for the same issue thrice, we give the customers an equivalent or better device as a replacement.” In the pipeline are tie-ups with manufacturers and even stores that sell gadgets.
Tags: Extended warranty for phones , extended warranty on phones in India , smartphone insurance , phone theft insurance , tablet extended warranty , tablet insurance , laptop extended warranty , camera extended warranty , extended warranty India , WarrantyBazaar , GadgetCops , The Mobile Store , Onsite Secure
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