Many people question if it’s worth the money to repair a damaged iPhone, so I am here
to clear up any misunderstandings that people have when it comes to the value of iPhone
repairs. The truth is that it is always wise to repair a broken iPhone, even if you are
going to trade it in on a 4th Generation model.
First, some basic facts about how much an iPhone really costs. As many readers know,
an iPhone’s true cost is not the price you actually paid for it at the AT&T or the Apple
store when you sign a new 2 year contract. The price you paid when you signed a 2-
year contract is actually a subsidized price, so what you paid is actually reduced by
AT&T since you are agreeing to stick with them for another 2 years. You can only be
granted this subsidized price if you are eligible for an upgrade (which is about every 12-
20 months). The true retail price of the current 4th Generation iPhone, if you went into
an AT&T or an Apple store and did not sign a contract is $600 for a 16gb and $700 for a
32gb. For a 3GS iPhone with 8gb of memory, you will fork out around $500.
Now AT&T does offer something called an “Early Upgrade” with iPhones. This allows
the customer to purchase a new iPhone BEFORE their next upgrade date by signing a
NEW 2-year contract. For the new 2-year contract you would get a different subsidized
price (And yes, special limitations apply). The Early Upgrade prices are also very high.
For a 4th Generation iPhone, you will pay $400 for a 16gb iPhone, and $500 for a 32gb
iPhone. A 3GS iPhone with 8gb of memory would set you back $300.
The frustrating part for iPhone repair companies is that most people have no clue that
their broken phone is actually repairable in almost all cases. Customers who bring their
broken devices into an AT&T store looking for a solution are led to believe that they are
forced to buy a brand-new iPhone at high prices. Of course, this is money in the bank to
AT&T and Apple. If your device was lost or stolen, indeed the only way to replace it is
to buy a new one. But there is no reason to take that kind of a loss on an iPhone that is
merely damaged. Repairing your iPhone is completely worth your money. Anything else
would be like buying a new car because you get into a minor traffic accident.
In reality, most repairs for iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS can be done for less than $100.
That means you can save over $200 if you repair your existing iPhone rather than agree
to an early upgrade. All repairs for the iPhone 4 are listed under $200, again $200 less
than replacing your device at the early upgrade price.
What if your current iPhone is broken, but you are eligible for an upgrade and able to
buy a new iPhone 4 at the $200-300 price with a new 2 year contract? Is it still worth
the money to repair the broken iPhone even though you can upgrade it? Absolutely.
You could invest in repairing your current device, and then sell it for the same price if
not more than an iPhone 4 at the subsidized price. These used phones, undamaged and
in working condition sell for over $200. By not repairing the damaged iPhone, you are
either going to discard a used device worth over $200, or you are going to give it to a
third party, who will repair it and resell it.
The bottom line is that it is always economical to repair a damaged device in any
situation, even if you are doing so to sell it.