iPads, Blackberry Playbooks, Samsung Galaxy Tab: how to insure your gadgets
If you want to insure your iPad or other tablet there are a raft of insurers out there ready to take your money. But do you really need specific gadget insurance?
If you splash out several hundred quid on the latest iPad, other tablet, or the latest laptop, you’ll understandably be concerned about keeping it safe.
You can buy iPad insurance from about £50 a year and policies generally cover theft, loss, accidental damage, unauthorised calls, and breakdown.
But is it cheaper to just add your tablet computer to your home insurance, rather than take out a special policy for your gadget of choice?
The case for tablet insurance
IPad and other gadget insurance can be relatively cheap. Insurance2go.co.uk, for example, will insure a 3G and wi-fi 32GB iPad for £4.49 per month, or £49.99 for the full year.
The full cover policy covers theft, loss, accidental damage including liquid damage, unauthorised calls up to £1,000, cover for use by immediate family members aged 16 or over and “Mobile Wallet Protection”. It also offers cover while abroad.
Rival Protect Your Bubble offers iPad cover from £4.88 a month. The cover includes theft, accidental damage and breakdown, and offers a quick replacement service whereby it promises to replace an unrepairable iPad within 48 hours of a successful claim.
The breakdown part of the policy covers tablets that break down outside of the manufacturer’s guarantee – something that could come in handy with Apple products that only come with one year’s guarantee. An extended warranty is something home insurance policies generally won’t offer.
Other pros of a tablet insurance policy include a low excess. Protect Your Bubble has a £50 excess for claims on iPads, other tablet computers and smartphones. Home insurance policies generally come with a much higher excess than this, typically around £100.
The case against
According to insurer esure, more than 3.3 million adults already have personal possessions cover as part of their home contents insurance. It says consumers would essentially be doubling-up on the cover if they bought tablet or laptop insurance too.
However, gadget fans adding their new toy to their home insurance policy will need to make sure they have “possessions outside the home” cover which normally costs about £30 extra. This will cover you if your tablet or laptop is stolen when you’re out and about. Most people tick this cover anyway as it’s the part of the policy that will kick in if you have your bag stolen and covers things like jewellery and cash.
You would also need to have “accidental damage” cover on your home insurance for your tablet to be covered for accidental damage within the home. But, again, most people have this included on their home insurance anyway.
It’s likely that most shop assistants get commission for each insurance policy sold, so don’t feel pressured into handing over extra cash on the spot for additional insurance to cover your new purchase. If you decide you need cover, shop around for the best deal and make sure you read the small print on any policy you buy.
Whether you’ve splashed out on the latest Blackberry Playbook, Samsung Galaxy Tab or iPad, there are a number of things you can do to keep it safe.
Firstly, always use the lock features of your tablet. Although it might be a pain to type in all the time, a password could stop a thief accessing your information if the device is lost or stolen.
Next, don’t save documents or notes on your device that contain the passwords/PINs for cards or online bank accounts. Also don’t automatically save passwords for websites you regularly visit – type them in each time instead.
If your iPad, laptop or other device is stolen, act fast. Make sure you report it to the police straight away as doing so in under 24 hours will be a condition of any insurance policy. Also notify your data provider if you have the 3G version of a tablet computer so they can stop the thief using up your data allowance.