Yet while many have experienced cell phone damage, like water logging or cracked screens, Americans are waiting longer to replace their phones. According to Daniel Research Group, which offers market research services, Americans wait an average of 3.17 years to get a new one, 25% longer than they waited in 2015.
Part of that reluctance may be the cost involved, especially if a phone is uninsured. A new iPhone 12 might set you back $800 out of the box. So if your current phone has a few screen cracks? You can maybe live with those until your next scheduled device upgrade.
Nerd tip: If you have an iPhone, you can pay for Apple Care protection, but pricing varies depending on coverage, and you’ll still be on the hook for any applicable deductibles.
A credit card trend that’s a ‘win-win’
Up until a few years ago, cell phone insurance was not a common perk for cardholders. You could find it on several Wells Fargo credit cards and a smattering of individual products from other issuers, and that was about it.
But in 2019, Mastercard unveiled cell phone protection as an added benefit for World and World Elite cardholders. Mastercard does not issue credit cards; it’s a payment network that services many, many credit cards, regardless of what bank issues them. As such, this change had far-reaching effects, from old-guard cards to fresh products rolled out by new startups.