(StatePoint) When you check out the latest smartphones from Apple, Google or Samsung, you’ll notice they have something in common: glass designs. Why? Glass allows for wireless charging, better connection signals, bigger display screens, and truth be told, glass feels great and looks beautiful. But these features come with a price — durability. Compared to metal or plastic, glass cracks, shatters, scratches and can get slippery.
Fortunately, there’s guidance available for consumers wondering about the durability of new phones. When new smartphones launch, SquareTrade, an Allstate company that provides highly-rated protection plans to millions of smartphone owners, conducts independent durability tests with their SquareTrade Breakability Robots that drop, bend, tumble and dunk devices to see how they survive everyday activities.
These tests recently found that the latest Apple iPhones and Samsung Galaxy phones all shatter on the first drop from six feet, no matter if they fall face-down or back-down.
This is bad news for consumers, as repairs are more expensive than ever. A screen repair can cost over $300 and a non-screen repair nearly $600.
Faced with these steep repair costs and the fact that many of these phones are $1,000 or more to purchase, it’s more important than ever to take steps to protect them. Here are three easy ways to start protecting your phone.
Get a Screen Protector
While sitting in your pocket or purse, your phone can rub against different objects (like keys), scratching the glass. Screen protectors placed over your phone’s glass screen will prevent this. While scratches usually won’t affect the usability of a device, they can be annoying visually and impact the resale value, which is something to consider if you’re buying a phone for $1,000.
Get a Case
A case is the most obvious way to protect your phone, but it’s important to remember their effectiveness varies. For example, you should look for a case with a lip that rises above your phone’s screen. At the same time, you don’t want one that’s so bulky it won’t fit in your pocket. Before you buy any case, be sure to read its reviews to learn how it’s worked in the real world.
Get a Protection Plan
Screen protectors and cases can help protect your phone — but unfortunately, they don’t make them invincible. A whopping 66 percent of smartphone owners say they’ve experienced some kind of damage in the past year.
For a small monthly fee, protection plans provide coverage against the rising costs of repairs due to accidents like cracked screens and liquid damage, plus hardware failures. Considering that repairs can now cost up to $599 (the same retail cost as the most expensive version of the first Apple iPhone), they’re definitely a smart choice for consumers. Plans can be purchased from SquareTrade for as little as $8.99 a month.
Accidents and hardware failures happen. But with a three-step protection strategy, your device will last longer and function more smoothly until your next upgrade.