T-Mobile Insurance

T-Mobile Insurance

T-Mobile Insurance By Asurion A Waste

I used to be a pretty big fan of getting the extra insurance offered by cell service providers for the more expensive phone types. But my opinion has changed in the last year or so. Although I have the insurance for my G1 Google Android phone and for my wife's as well, I am going to cancel the policies (which are fulfilled by Assurion).

Here is why:

Jenivee left her phone on a Hawaiian Airlines plane while we were on vacation. Although we could see the plane was still sitting there at the gate when Jenivee noticed, Hawaiian blew us off and basically said 'too bad'. (Read more here).

In short, she lost her phone never to be seen again and now we needed to replace it. Of course, I had the insurance on both Google Android G1 phones as I had done with previous fairly expensive phones, it had paid off for me to have the insurance. Typically the deductible had been $50.00 and the payments were about $4.00 per month. I had noted that with T-Mobile, the monthly was more like $6.95 but what I hadn't exactly noted was the deductible was $130.00! So... if you do the math pretty quickly you can figure it does not make a ton of sense to pay this forever. To *upgrade* through T-Mobile to the same or newer phone is still outrageous because we haven't had these phones 2 years yet so $130.00 seems like an okay price. But you can see the price for a newbie service sign up for the Google Android G1 is now at $99.00 for a 2 year contract so obviously, the pricing is coming down on these phones.

However, since I had been paying it, and since we wanted the replacement quickly, it seemed like we may as well get it and have it done if nothing but for convenience. So after making one more round of fruitless phone calls to the airport terminals lost and founds, Hawaiian Airlines many lost and founds, we decided to go on line and do it.

Three phone calls later between Assurion, T-Mobile, getting the service suspended, filing a stolen item report with the police so we had the required info for Assurion, three online rejections due to conflicting last use dates (we finally just put in "YESTERDAY" as day last used even though the T-Mobile agent said it was 3 days ago and online data said 2 days ago when a text message from Mauritania supposedly came in) it was *accepted*. 

Well, almost. Now we had to find a proof of ownership of the phone. So we needed to download a form and find a receipt, original box, or something to that effect with the Google Android phone's EMI number on it... right...We bought the phones about 18 months ago but since I am luckily a somewhat organized hoarder, I did have the original boxes and manuals tucked away in a big box where I keep original manuals and such. Yeah! I scanned the box UPC and labeling and created a crystal clear printout and gave it to Jenivee.

So, now on about day 6 after the loss, Jenivee faxes in the docs and later that evening she receives an email stating the fax is unreadable and please fax it again. Really? Seriously? Okay... fine...

At this point I am becoming a little frustrated and I happen to mention this to some people at work and one them mentions they have a Google Android G1 phone they have laying around after upgrading to the Hero or MyTouch by HTC or something like that. Okay, cool... how much did she want for it? She had no idea.

After digging a bit, I figured a grey market G1 at this point in time is worth between $60.00 and $100.00 from looking on eBay and KSL and craigslist. My friend and coworker says she will take $60.00 and even had a fresh sim to use for it. Hum......now I start to wonder why I had the insurance at all, ever, in the first place.  If you do a little simple math and figure the grey market or secondary market for used phones of the same type you might have develops after about 6 to 12 months after release with a declining price over time, you might come up with a cost benefit analysis (cba) that would tell you it definitely makes sense to have the insurance, even at $7.00 per month with a $130.00 deductible, for the first six months you have your phone, and as you approach 12 months, it has to start to approach a break even point.

So I called up and canceled yesterday and now am saving close to $14.00 per month. So it seems to make sense to me to get insurance right at first of getting a brand new model of a very expensive smart phone, but after 9 months or so, I would watch the grey market pricing and measure your risk averseness, factor that in, and make an educated guess of the quality and longevity of your phone and decided whether keeping the insurance makes sense. Given the difficulty of trying to actually use the insurance also factors in if only it gave us time to reflect on whether or not that was the best deal.

One last factor to consider: When I called in to cancel, the T-Mobile agent mentioned one benefit for the phone covered is that it extends the warranty on the phones as long as you keep it insured. This could be worth something as my phone has been acting funny lately. It seems to reboot spontaneously and occasionally locks up and I have to pull the battery to reset it. But, I figure, if I can make it another eight or nine months with this phone, I will probably upgrade to a bigger better and faster Android phone anyway. So If I have to pay out $60 for a grey market phone between now and then versus 7x$13 (for both phones) one more time, I am still better off....





CachedSince:{ts '2024-07-18 00:05:48'}