Earlier, we reported that the iPad 3 was likely to get the AppleCare+ warranty plan that is already available for the iPhone 4S. Now, after Apple's big media event, we know that it's not called the iPad 3 and that yes, you can crack your iPad on the sidewalk and you're covered.
AppleCare+ debuted with the iPhone 4S, and it is "coming soon" to the brand new tablet. If you purchase nothing extra, your new iPad will come with the standard 1-year warranty. But with Applecare+...
Every iPad comes with one year of hardware repair coverage through its limited warranty and up to 90 days of complimentary support. AppleCare+ for iPad extends your coverage to two years from the original purchase date of your iPad and adds up to two incidents of accidental damage coverage, each subject to a $49 service fee. Whether you use your iPad with a Mac or a PC, just one phone call can help resolve most issues.
So dependent on how bad you mess up your new iPad when you drop it in the can, you may or may not have to pay $49 bucks to have it fixed or replaced. Hey, it's much better than $499 and up for a new one.
In order to get all the benefits of AppleCare+, you have to buy it within 30 days of purchasing your new iPad. If you don't do it when you buy the device, you can go in to an Apple retail store and add it on there.
No official word on the price, but it's expected to mirror the price of AppleCare+ on the 4S, which is $99.