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87 Million Americans Have Had Smartphone Damage in the Past Year

Allstate Protection Plans survey finds smartphone owners underestimate both the likelihood they will damage their phone and the cost of repairs

SAN FRANCISCO – December 15, 2020

Americans who have dropped their smartphones on the  sidewalk or into a swimming pool are far from alone. A new survey by Allstate Protection Plans found that 140 million Americans have damaged a smartphone at some point in their lives, with 87 million  having a mishap in the past 12 months.

The Allstate Protection Plans Mobile Mythconceptions Study looked at the common causes of smartphone damage, along with consumers’ attitudes toward repairing and replacing their phones. It  found that while Americans believe only 43% of smartphone owners have had an accident that required repair, 61% have actually had damage that needed repairs. 

In the past year, damaged screens (45%) led the list of most common types of smartphone damage. Battery failure (19%) was second, with damaged corners and sides coming in third (13%). Other study  highlights:  


  • Mythconception versus reality: More than half (54%) of Americans believe smartphone repairs cost  $150 or less. In reality, an uninsured iPhone 12 screen repair costs $279 on average, and an  uninsured Samsung Galaxy S20 screen repair costs $249 on average. 
  • Repair or replace? Sixty-three percent have avoided fixing a broken smartphone because of high  repair costs, while 44% avoided repairs due to worries about low-quality work. Most often, people  choose to upgrade phones instead, with 64% saying they would buy a new phone rather than get a  phone fixed.  
  • Don’t be seen with a cracked screen: Forty-nine percent think being seen with a cracked screen is unprofessional, and 47% admit being embarrassed by it. Thirty-seven percent have tried to hide  cracked screens in public.  
  • Swipe at your own risk: Thirty percent of people have cut their fingers on damaged screens.  ∙ Case in point: Eighty percent of smartphone owners keep their device in a case. However, 21% say  they have dropped and damaged a phone even when it was in a case.  
  • Climate concerns: Forty-nine percent of people say the environmental impact of owning a  smartphone is extremely or very important to them. Although 56% say they know how to recycle an  old or broken smartphone, only 21% typically do so.  
  • Old phones stay home: Only 12% of Americans sell their old phones. Sixty-eight percent have an old smartphone in their house, and 47% have two or more. Nearly one-third (31%) say they typically  keep old phones as a backup. However, of those with an old smartphone in their house, 68% have at  least one that hasn’t been used in four or more years. 

“Our survey found that many Americans underestimate the frequency of smartphone damage and the  cost of repairs. Many opt to use damaged devices rather than seek repairs, suffering through  embarrassment and even bodily harm to their fingers," said Jason Siciliano, vice president and global  creative director at Allstate Protection Plans. "We recommend that consumers invest in cases and 
screen protectors and consider protection plans to help with repair costs. Considering how much we use  our phones every day, it’s worth it.”

For more information on how to keep smartphones safe and avoid hefty out-of-pocket repair costs with  a protection plan, visit (Redirects to, an Allstate  company.) 


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