(WFLX) - A new iPhone, or any smart phone, is not cheap. It usually costs $199 with a two-year contract.
But what many people don't realize is that you'll have to pay a lot more if you drop it, break it, or lose it. That's because replacement phones don't come at a discount.
Smart phones, like the iPhone 4 and Droid are expensive, but they're even more expensive if you break or lose one.
Dave Gregory learned that after buying his two teenagers new smart phones. "Within two weeks, both of them had dropped their phone, simple drops, fumbling to get a call. It fell to the floor a couple of feet and the screen shattered."
The same thing happened to Timothy White. "The screen was completely shattered. I can't dial any phone number with a 1, 2 or 3 in it," he said.
If your phone is broken, lost or stolen, you can't get a new one for $199. That's why insurance can be worth buying. "Insurance is a good option for the consumer, because it's $199 the promo price. But if you lose it without the insurance, it's close to $700 for replacement of a 16 gig," said Bob Flynn, a Verizon Wireless representative.
Verizon, AT&T and other carriers offer smart phone protection plans for about $10 a month; though, you'll still pay a deductible between $150 and $200 for a new phone.
A third party plan, with good reviews is Square Trade. A two-year protection plan on an iPhone or Android runs $99 - $125 with a $50 deductible.
For iPhones, many tech Web sites recommend Apple's Apple Care Plus. Apple Care is also $99 for 2 years with a $50 deductible per incident.
Finally, your homeowners policy may provide coverage, so check with your insurance company and your phone provider. If one of them offers a better rate, you may want to sign up.