Statistics show that more gadgets are damaged during the Christmas season than any other time of year: Nearly 1 in 8 households reporting breaking a smartphone while shopping, cooking, or traveling.
Shattering the screen of your beloved iPhone isn’t just an annoyance; it’s a billion-dollar industry for Apple. Between the years of 2007 and 2014, SquareTrade estimated that Americans spent over $23 billion dollars on having their ruined iPhone replaced or restored, and Apple customers are largely behind those big numbers. On average, iPhone users damage their phones every 10 weeks—meaning that they end up back in the store for repairs up to five times a year. Nearly a third of those users will decide not to have their iPhone replaced at all—due to the prohibitive cost for those not on an Apple Care plan—and live with a broken device.
If there is a way to break your phone, customers will find it.
This year, it’s time to forego that rage cycle and do what every iPhone user should have years ago—buy a legitimate iPhone case. I can hear the resistance now: “But I just bought a $600 phone. Why would I want to pay even more money for a case when my phone is built to be resistant to drops anyway?” It’s the same reason that you buy a great frame for a priceless work of art: If you pay that much money for something, the least you can do is spend a little extra cash to make sure it’s protected and showcased properly. Would you purchase a $20,000 motorcycle not to spend $50 more on a helmet?
Most iPhone cases are stereotyped as bulky, cumbersome, and unnecessary—addressing a problem that Apple customers don’t have. After all, despite early reports that the iPhone would bend in users’ pockets, tests proved that the 6 and 6S were actually the sturdiest smartphones Apple had ever produced, while also surviving more drops than the Samsung Galaxy S5. But nonetheless, the iPhone 6 and 6S are actually the products customers most commonly report broken. The devices are durable, sure, but they’re also large and kind of slippery, meaning that you might be likely to drop them more often.
The other major complaint about iPhone cases—from the nearly quarter of userswho don’t have their smartphones protected—is that it makes no sense to buy one of the most visually appealing devices on the market and then cover it with an ugly black box. It’s like purchasing a Matisse and then throwing a steel cage over it. But for those concerned about aesthetics, a number of cases ensure you don’t have to choose between visual appeal and safety. Brookstone’s Hex Icon Leather Wallet(best in brown) and the J.Crew Pocket Dial combine convenience and style; in the latter, you can tuck in your own pocket square for a bit of flair at a formal event.