Have you ever dropped your phone in a toilet? Nineteen percent of phone owners between the ages of 18 and 24 have. Disturbing statistics, to say the least. But that data, released by Microsoft as the result of a Harris Interactive survey, reminds us just how fragile our iPhones are.
Let’s face it. We take our phones everywhere with us. It just takes a second, as you’re hastily grabbing everything to run into work or school, to drop your phone in the parking lot. If you’re lucky, your phone hits pavement or concrete. If you’re unlucky, it falls directly into a puddle in the middle of a rainstorm.
Here are the things that can happen to your iPhone during the day:
–Placed in your pocket, then dropped into the toilet as you’re standing to flush
–Dropped down the stairwell as you’re struggling to get a grip on your belongings
–Catapulted from the top of a roller coaster
–Dropped on the driveway, then run over by your tire as you’re backing out
–Tossed into a bucket of mop water by your child
–Chewed to bits by an angry dog
There are more where those came from. If you bought your phone and left it in a drawer, you’d be golden. Even if you were able to keep it constantly holstered or safely inside your purse or briefcase, you wouldn’t have much to worry about. But the cold, hard truth is, you have to answer it or send a text from time to time and in the process of re-holstering it you can easily be fumbled.
The cell phone companies have an easy solution for all this: cell phone insurance.
That is now an option for iPhone owners, with even AT&T finally allowing customers to purchase iPhone insurance through them. This may have been due to the fact that Verizon offers iPhone insurance. AppleCare also offers insurance, but with any plan you choose, you’ll pay between $4 and $11 a month, plus have at least a $50 deductible. You’ll also have a limit as to how many times they’ll replace your phone—although if you’re having that many disasters, you might consider switching to a cheaper phone. If you’re signed to a two-year contract, however, you’ll be paying $96-$264 for insurance coverage over those 24 months.
There is another option.
Buy a case that covers your iPhone with so much protection you can live a normal life without worrying about it. For many of us, that has meant keeping our iPhone covered with an Otterbox Defender—an excessively bulky case that covers even your screen. You can buy Otterbox cases on Amazon for $15-$50 in a variety of colors and the phone is made of high-impact, durable materials that take all the abuse, leaving your phone safe inside. It also comes with its own clip.
However, the Otterbox will only keep your phone safe from bumps, scratches, and drops. Everyday wear and tear, but nothing extreme, in other words. If you drop your phone in the swimming pool, you may be better off than if you’d had no case at all, but you’re still up a creek (pun intended). While you may not have plans to take your iPhone for a swim, accidents happen and you likely have no control over those accidents.
Another option is a new case called LifeProof.
Not only does this case say it protects against being dropped, tossed, stepped on, and whatever else you can do to an iPhone, the company is so confident its phone can survive underwater that the company website encourages people to make underwater movies using the phone. It’s important to note that LifeProof is waterproof down to 6.6 feet, so deep sea diving isn’t recommended.
LifeProof has only been on the market for a year, but the company spent two years developing the design.
We wanted to ensure that the LifeProof case delivered on all our promises, providing a protective case that allows full phone functionality yet slim enough to be used every day,” said Gary Rayner, CEO of LifeProof. “The validation we have received from thousands of customers is very rewarding to everyone who has worked so hard at LifeProof to make this a reality.”
The design is a definite plus for LifeProof.
With all its promises for durability, this case adds very little bulk to your phone, plus it comes in several color choices. LifeProof goes after the active lifestyle market, plastering pictures of healthy, fit people using their iPhones while biking, hiking, and going for a daily run. I suppose it is more reassuring, if you plan to tuck your iPhone into the waistband of your jogging shorts while you run, that you have a case to protect your phone against all that sweat.
With the summer months upon us, LifeProof is a very attractive option for protecting your iPhone, especially if you plan to take it to the beach or pool. But remember, while your iPhone may be protected against sand and water, LifeProof still doesn’t keep it safe from excessive heat. Apple recommends keeping your iPhone at 32 degrees to 95 degrees Fahrenheit and avoiding leaving it out in direct sunlight. If you do plan to take your phone out in the sun for the day, keep it in the shade—under a towel if necessary.
While the LifeProof case can be a budget-buster at $79, when compared to the cost of iPhone insurance or, even worse, full replacement iPhone cost. It might be the best investment you make for your new iPhone.