That cracked smartphone screen? It will likely cost you more than you’d think.
Two in three smartphone owners reported damage to their phones in the past year, according to a study released Tuesday by Allstate subsidiary SquareTrade
Cracked screens were the most common form of damage, accounting for 29% of damaged smartphones, followed by scratched screens (27%) and nonworking batteries (22%).
Dropping a phone on the ground was the culprit in 74% of these cases. But those simple accidents are costing Americans big time. American smartphone owners broke more than 50 million screens last year — nearly two every second — and spent $3.4 billion to replace them. SquareTrade surveyed more than 3,000 people over the course of 2018 and extrapolated their results to account for the number of smartphone owners in the U.S.
Scientists and smartphone makers including Apple and Samsung have worked to design touch screens that feature more impact-resistant glass.
“Today’s smartphones have all-glass designs that look sleek but aren’t reliable when it comes to everyday drops,” Jason Siciliano, vice president and global creative director at SquareTrade, said in the report. “It can cost hundreds of dollars to repair even the smallest crack or damage.”
Scientists and smartphone makers including Apple and Samsung
have worked to design touch screens that feature more durable, impact-resistant glass. And some states have considered “right-to-repair” legislation that would allow consumers to perform smartphone repairs themselves without violating their warranties, in an effort to drive down the cost of these fixes.
People underestimate the cost of smartphone fixes
Smartphone owners are pretty bad when it comes to estimating the cost of a repair. Seventy percent of people said they think repair a smartphone screen costs less than $150. On average though, those repairs will set them back $170. For Apple’s new iPhone Xs Max
that figure goes up to a staggering $329.
People don’t often look kindly at those who walk around with a cracked screen, especially those looking to date.
Non-screen repairs are even more expensive, costing between $249 and $599 on average. But once again, consumers underestimate how pricey these fixes can be. In the SquareTrade study, 77% of people expected those repairs to cost $250 or less.
While consumers may not be adept at predicting how much a smartphone repair will cost them, they still will put off maintenance because of sticker shock. Two-thirds of consumers said they wouldn’t repair a damaged phone if it still worked, while 59% said they would upgrade their device rather than fix an old one.
But people who have cracked their smartphone screens may have other reasons to fix their devices other than making their lives easier. People don’t often look kindly at those who walk around with a cracked screen. Nearly 15% of adults said they would be cautious about dating someone who had shattered smartphone screen, according to a survey from dating site Match.com
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