For some reason, Apple has dropped the typical $99 fee for transferring old data to newly purchased or repaired Mac devices.
Moving files from an old, sluggish device to a new piece of hardware can be a sluggish procedure, but Apple's Data Migration Assistant makes it painless — and now completely free.
The policy change went into effect on April 2 and was first reported by TidBITS.
"Beginning April 2, there will be no cost for data migrations with the purchase of a new Mac or data transfers with a repair," an Apple store operations specialist confirmed.
Why Apple did away with fee remains to be determined, but from here on out, users who purchase a new Mac or take their current in for repair will get their data transferred at no extra cost.
Data Migration Frees Up
Apple probably sees no need to charge users an exorbitant amount anymore just to have their data moved to a new Mac. Users might not even need the service in the first place. Sure, years ago, it was crucial to pass over data via a Thunderbolt cable — but tools such as Apple's Migration Assistant and iCloud have made it easier for users to transfer files on their own. Signing in with an Apple ID, for instance, will let Mac owners grab files from iCloud Drive and regain access to iTunes purchases, among other things. A handful of online backup services are available nowadays too.
Simply put, users don't have to deal with pesky cables anymore — they can just move files over the cloud via Wi-Fi now.
Still, not everyone is tech-savvy, and while most people are familiar with the cloud, that doesn't mean they understand it can be used to hand off files to a new device. Thankfully, Apple will gladly take that dirty task out of users' hands. This way, customers don't run the risk of losing files, and everything is completely free. The process could take long, though, especially if the user has a heavy backlog or if there are lots of customers lined up to have their data moved. This is something to consider for those looking to take their Mac to an Apple Store for the procedure.
Do It Yourself
Thankfully, Apple has some fairly easy-to-follow instructions for those who much rather do the transferring on their own. For iOS devices, restoration is even simpler, and Apple even offers its own full backups via iCloud or iTunes.