Cracked ipad pro - to sell, repair, ignore, or upgrade?

Hello! Little dilemma… at least for me, maybe there’s a quick pattern recognition on this community’s part that makes quick work of this:

I have a cracked ipad pro 2018 11”. The crack is small hairline that has branched off a bit and then stopped spreading, but looks like it could continue. Still very usable, but uncertain for how long.

Since I have no apple care (lesson learned), my options seem to be the following

  • I can go third party and repair the pro screen for $350 and hope for best
  • I can use the warranty to replace it with a refurb for $500
  • I can sell it as is on ebay, probably for $300-400. Not worth to repair and sell - they sell used for about $600. So net is better to sell as is. Would use the proceeds for either ipad air, the 11 or 12.9 pro, or the m1 macbook air
  • I can leave the screen protector and hope for best.

For the past month I was ipad only and enjoying it - it actually improved my workflow in many areas, and anything was better than the butterfly keyboard I had used prior (I’d rather type on a nokia brick-phone…). The only workflow struggle for me has been managing and editing copious notes (which sometimes in my life has been orthogonal to actual productivity). So I had begun considering the m1 mba, or the 12.9” ipad - though the form factor is giving me pause.

Now I have to figure this out with the variable of the cracked ipad in the mix, and the multitude of possible options, all in search of the imaginary holy grail of a perfect set-up.

Any suggestions, super appreciated.

P.s. And one way or another, thanks for having this community. I am no power user, but I benefit enormously from the testing and iteration you guys do with workflows, apps, etc etc. I hope to one day have some useful stuff to share about how I’ve used devices and software etc in my own personal endeavors.

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A data point: in 2016 my iPad Pro 9.7" got a little crack across the corner. It stayed that way for a while and then zip - there was a crack left to right a couple of cm up from the home button. It still worked for a while and then one day it was not touch sensitive below this crack. I did have AppleCare so I took it to a store, expecting it to get the glass replaced. However, that didn’t happen, they replaced the iPad with an identical one.

We always get AppleCare on all our devices, and have used it over the years with MBPs with bad GPUs, iMac that burned out multiple motherboards and hard disks, and a couple of iPhone mishaps. I did not have a screen protector on the iPad. I do get screen protectors on phones, and glass screen protectors are very similar to the original surface and will either crack instead of the glass in an accident or hold everything together and working if the screen does get cracked. Nobody plans to drop or break a device but a number of factors combined to result in my iPad’s accident.

Since iPad Pro with Mini LED displays are rumored for 2021, I’d suggest seeing how long it can hold together with a screen protector, and if you still have the butterfly keyboard device, getting an external keyboard may help.

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Welcome to the forum. Sounds to me like you are overthinking this. If the iPad is working fine and you are happy and productive using it, albeit with an ugly and slightly cracked screen, just keep using it and stop worrying.

That’s what I’m doing. My 2018 iPad Pro 11 inch has a cracked screen (cat knocked over a lamp and it fell onto the iPad and cracked the screen). But the iPad works fine, including all the touchscreen features and pencil support, so I am continuing to use it until Apple releases the next significant upgrade. The cracked screen doesn’t bother me, in fact, I can hardly notice it in dark mode. My advice is that instead of shelling out a lot of money to fix or repair this or wasting time and brainpower fretting about what to do, just live with it and keep working.


Do you have home insurance that could cover this, or another type of insurance? I have Gadget insurance through my bank account and got the screen on my 9.7” iPad Pro replaced for £75

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If I had apple care, this would have been such a simple and affordable fix. I come from the past when devices were more repairable, and I didn’t mind doing those repairs myself, so I overlooked applecare on this newer device. Didn’t realize that in some ways the nature of the device has changed and aren’t designed to be repaired anymore, for better or worse (i guess it’s the cost of moving into a future with streamlined modern designs). This reality makes apple care seem like a logical choice…

Wouldn’t be my first time overthinking a simple thing. You speak reason. I decided that’s the choice I’ll take now. I already feel better. And the little cracks give it a personalized feel :wink:

Thanks :slight_smile:

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I don’t, didn’t even know gadget insurance was a thing. Something to look into…

If you’re US based and paid for the device with a credit card you might have an extended warranty. Worth checking

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Hadn’t considered that; but I looked and indeed I used a credit card - apparently some people have had some luck going that route. I’ll give it a try, thanks!

I’ve seen people put a screen protector over their already-cracked screen, ostensibly to prevent the crack from getting any worse - and there’s a certain sort of logic to that.

For less than $10 on eBay it would be a worthwhile experiment, especially if it gets the iPad Pro through the next year-ish until new ones drop. :slight_smile:

Yep, trying it now! Holding up still, no expansion of the cracks yet. I am optimistic :slight_smile:


I will resurface this thread from the dead to vent:

My 2017 iPad Pro 10.5’’ fell flat on the floor last monday and the screen was cracked. Went to an authorized Premium Reseller for service (via the Support app) and the guy said that Apple does not repair the screen, only replaces batteries for this oldish model, kindly offering me a refurbished model for a whopping 480€. I was not amused --still ain’t, as it happens-- and the guy said: “Between you and me, this does not make much sense”.

I understand this is an almost 5 years old device, but it still works great, and is supposed to be a hand-me-down device for the wife who is running an ancient iPad Air2. This does not sounds too sustainable to me. The Right to Repair legislation cannot come soon enough.

Since it’s not Right To Inexpensive Repair, Right To Repair will likely result in an official Apple part almost as expensive as that refurb.

Why not price it at a third party repair shop? It would probably cost you closer to $200, and some of them offer warranties.

Truly agree wih both points: my next step would be going to an aftermarket street repair shop, but from what I gather they more or less specialize in mobile devices, don’t know if they can get hold of the particular screen replacement SKU, but well one has to try.

There are tons of aftermarket iPad replacement screens, and our local third-party repair shops can all do them. In the US, you can nab the screen replacement parts on eBay from vendors of unknown reputation for about $100-$120. iFixIt sells the kit with all the tools for $200, but rates the repair “difficult” with a 1-3 hour timeframe.

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That’s great to know, thanks!

Unless the screen has stopped working or the crack is very unsightly/annoying, I personally would ignore it unless you can get it to a repair shop (I don’t live near one). My current iPad Pro was bought in Dec 2019. It was a replacement for an earlier iPad I had cracked, which was annoying me because I don’t like damaged things. A week after buying the new one, I knocked it off the arm of a sofa on to a hardwood floor, and cracked the screen vertically :roll_eyes: Since I had literally just bought it to replace a previous cracked model, I stuck with it.

Now it’s June 2022, and the screen still works (and is still cracked :joy:).

(I wouldn’t insure me for cracked devices, I do this a lot. My cracked iPhone is next to me right now :flushed:)

I have an iPad 5th with a cracked screen (slid off of a seat in my car and hit the floorboard). Mostly cosmetic as far as I can tell, and will only cost me $80 to fix with OEM parts, so since it will (as of now) run 16 when that is released, going to pony up here in the near future…