SquareTrade Adds Buyback Option


San Francisco - Extended-warranty provider SquareTrade has added a buyback option to its iPhone and iPad plans through a partnership with Los Angeles-based TechForward.

The guaranteed buyback plan gives consumers a percentage of the purchase price (for phones, the unsubsidized price before any carrier discounts) when they upgrade to a new device. The amount the customer receives depends on when the item is returned: 50 percent up to the first six months, 40 percent for months six through 12, 30 percent for months 12 through 18, and 20 percent for months 18 through 24.

For a limited time, SquareTrade is offering the buyback option at no additional cost. Its iPhone and iPad warranties, priced at $99 and $96 respectively, protect against drops, spills and other common accidents, as well as all normal mechanical and electrical failures, for two years.

"By bundling SquareTrade with TechForward, we are able to provide Verizon iPhone customers with a great way to hedge against the risk of both iPhone failure and early upgrade envy," said SquareTrade CEO Steve Abernethy.

Techforward was first-to-market with a CE buyback plan in 2006. Best Buy introduced its own buyback plan during Super Bowl through a partnership with Chartis, and NEW also launched a similar program in February.

According to a report in socalTECH.com, TechForward is suing Best Buy over the CE chain's buyback plan, which TechForward described as a near clone of its own. The lawsuit, which was filed last week in the California Central District Court, claims Best Buy ran a trial of TechForward's services last year but instead opted to copy the company's program.

SquareTrade iPhone and iPad warranties can be purchased directly at www.squaretrade.com.


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