If you're an existing Droid owner, or are a newcomer to the Droid camp via either the Droid X or the Droid 2, chances are you're looking to protect your shiny new Android smartphone with a bit of insurance. Sure, Motorola's manufacturer's warranty will cover you if your Droid has a technical failure, but should you drop, smash, kick, punch, spill water on, drop into a pool/toilet, lose, or have your Droid stolen -- you're out of luck. Most importantly, replacing your ill fated Droid won't come at the $159 or $199 price you paid as a subsidized contract price, you'll need to pay the full $559 or $599 replacement price.
To remedy this fact, Verizon -- through a partnership with an independent company named Asurion -- offers its customers a variety of insurance and protection options for the Droid, Droid 2, and Droid X. The options that Verizon offers that provide Droid insurance do cover many of the possible Droid mishaps above, but they unfortunately do so in a way that is a poor value to you, the customer. Verizon's options offer less coverage but cost more (higher monthly fees AND higher deductibles) than competing alternatives.
Until recently, your wireless provider (or the third party company they had an exclusive agreement with) was your only option for insuring a device such as the Droid. In the last 5 or so years, this has changed drastically, and we as consumers now have several other viable and well established options.
Below we've highlighted some of the alternatives you can pursue to insure your prized new Droid, Droid 2, or Droid X.
In the last 10 years, SquareTrade has become a household name in electronics warranty protection. SquareTrade offers warranty protection that is intended to layer on top of a device's manufacturer's warranty. SquareTrade warranties are proudly offered on electronics products sold by Amazon, countless eBay merchants, and is widely replacing more expensive "extended warranties" sold by retailers such as Best Buy. SquareTrade is also one of the most popular choices of iPhone owners for protecting their iPhones.
SquareTrade offers protection that covers manufacturer defects for a full 2 years and also covers accidental damage such as drops and spills. SquareTrade also offers a 5-day service guarantee, during which your phone is either repaired, replaced or you're reimbursed for the full replacement cost (up to $599 for the Droid models). Unfortunately, SquareTrade's coverage does not protect you in the case of loss or theft of your Droid.
SquareTrade's monthly premium of $6 is 25% less than Verizon's, and their claim deductible of $50 is 44% lower than Verizons.
SquareTrade has an A+ rating from the BBB, a perfect 5-star rating on NexTag, and a near-perfect rating on epinions.com.
Worth Avenue Group
Worth Avenue Group, founded in 1971, has been insuring personal property for almost 40 years. In the last decade or so, Worth Avenue Group has become one of the most well-known names in television, PC, laptop and smartphone insurance. Like SquareTrade, Worth Avenue Group is an incredibly popular choice amongst iPhone owners who smartly decide against paying AT&T's higher prices for less value.
Worth Avenue Group offers Droid insurance that protects your phone against accidental damage, but also protects against loss, theft and fire damage.
Unlike the other options, Worth Avenue Group pays you $599 cash for replacement of your Droid when you file a claim. Worries about repair times, replacement with a refurbished model, and the like are of no concern, as you're simply receiving a check you can cash and use to buy a replacement Droid directly from Verizon.
Worth Avenue Group's monthly premium of $4.56 are 39% lower than Verizon's, and their deductible of $50 is 44% lower than Verizon's.
Verizon/Asurion, SquareTrade, and Worth Ave Group Compared
|Verizon||SquareTrade||Worth Avenue Group|
|Cost per Month||$7.99||$6.00||$4.56|
|1st Year Coverage||YES||YES||YES|
|2nd Year Coverage||YES||YES||YES|
|3rd Year Coverage||NO||NO||YES|
|Accidental Damage Protection|
|General Accidental Damage||YES||YES||YES|
|Purchase Period||30 Days||30 Days||Anytime|
|Covers New Phones||YES||YES||YES|
|Covers Refurbished Phones||YES||YES||YES|
|Covers Used Phones||NO||NO||YES|
|Malfunction Claims Allowed||2||1||Unlimited|
|Damage Claims Allowed||2||1||Unlimited|
|Theft / Loss Claims Allowed||0||0||Unlimited|
|Theft / Loss Deductible||$89.00||N/A||$50.00|
|Consumer & Agency Ratings|
|ResellerRatings.com||N/A||9.85 (of 10)||N/A|
|Epinions.com||N/A||4.5 (of 5)||N/A|
|Google Products||N/A||5.0 (of 5)||N/A|
|Nextag||N/A||4.7 (of 5)||N/A|
|Cost per Month||$7.99||$6.00||$4.56|
What Should You Do?
You should make your own decisions. We're just here to try to prevent you from spending more money on what is, in some cases, an inferior product. At the end of the day, you may feel more comfortable insuring your Droid through Verizon. Though, in reality, you're still buying from a third party. As mentioned above, Verizon partners with an independent company, Asurion, to provide Droid insurance. All claims are handled by Asurion, wholly independent of Verizon.
More importantly, alternatives like SquareTrade and Worth Avenue Group have been around for a long time now, and both consistently receive rave reviews and excellent satisfaction rankings from their customers.
Whatever you decide, we strongly suggest you do in fact protect your Droid with insurance of some sort.