What Would You Do?

I Destroyed My Phone, What Should I Do?


Stupid mistakes can cost a person, and my most recent dive into stupidity is going to cost me plenty. I stopped at Walmart on my way to the gym this morning to pick up some needed supplies. I didn’t want to take my phone in with me, so I put it on the floor behind the console between the front seats of my van. When I returned from the store, I noticed the console (which can slide backwards to make the cup holders usable to passengers in the middle row) was not locked into place. I tried to slide it into the locked position, but something was stopping it. I pulled harder and harder until I slammed it into place. It was at that point it occurred to me that my phone was in the general area of the console, and it may have been the object that was preventing the console from locking. Sliding the console backward and reaching down confirmed my fears. I tried to unlock my phone, but all I saw were some faint flickers of light.

By forcing the console into a locked position, I had crushed my phone horribly.

I was going to have to get a new phone, which was disappointing because I purchased my current phone on the AT&T Next plan 19 months ago. I was only 5 months away from it being completely paid for. The phone was working fine, and I expected it to last me quite a while resulting in a lower cell phone bill. Now I would have to shell out a significant chunk of money for a new phone.

Given my family’s current phone usage, and the fact that we have several phones still being paid for monthly, I’ll be looking for a phone that can be seamlessly integrated into our current AT&T plan. Here are what I view as my choices:

  • Used Phone : I could check a variety of classifieds and online resources to purchase a used AT&T or unlocked phone I can use on the AT&T network. This would be cheaper than buying a new phone, but the operational life of the phone is a huge question mark.
  • Older Generation New Phone : Purchasing a new phone that is a generation behind would give me a new phone, with a warranty, at a cheaper price than the latest and greatest phone. I had a Galaxy S5, so even by getting an S6 I would be getting a significant upgrade. Additionally, Best Buy frequently offers gift card incentives ($100) to purchase older generation phones.
  • Latest and Greatest New Phone : This is the most expensive option, but gives me the best phone available.

I didn’t want to buy a new phone, but in my opinion buying an older generation new phone is my best option given my situation. I don’t need the latest and greatest phone. This options gives me a functional phone with a warranty and with the reduced cost and Best Buy gift card makes the most economic sense.

Have you had to unexpectedly had to buy a new phone? What was your reasoning behind the choice you made?

Brought to you courtesy of Brock

About the author

Brock Kernin


  • Bummer. Last time I destroyed a phone like that I dropped it (full force) onto the basement floor. It was a flip phone and was about time to get replaced anyway, so I just took the opportunity to do so.

  • I probably would make the same decision you made – a one generation old new phone. Phone insurance or protection plans might be worthwhile, depending on your habits. I don’t have one for my phone because I tend to be pretty careful with it, but I do have insurance on my wife’s phone and my daughter’s phone. My daughter because she’s 12 (need I say more?) and my wife because she regularly uses it in the bathtub. One slip and goodbye phone! We actually used her policy once already because she dropped in onto the floor and the screen broke. But I plan on cancelling the polcies after the phone are about 2 years old. After that, I’ll just get a new phone if something happens to theirs.

  • You forgot to consider repairing it. Unless it’s water damaged, it most likely could be fixed pretty easily. Many phone models you can even do yourself.

  • I always purchase my phones ‘unexpectedly’ (when they break). Last time I got a cheap LG phone that cost me just 100 bucks. Was new, but not that fancy. I hate big phones, so I wanted one with touchscreen and all the gimmicks, but not big. It’s been in use for 2 years now, probably will break in the next months

  • I have a Samsung Grand Galaxy phone that cost $30 after rebate when we switched to Cricket last year. It’s not as good as the Motorola I had with Verizon and had had for a year, but the old phone couldn’t be used on the new network. I don’t need the best and brightest phone, just a basic Android. I need to be able to run email and social media apps, take calls and take pictures, maybe play a game or two.

    I don’t understand paying $500 or more to have the newest tech when the differences in what the phones do just aren’t that great. I’d rather put the difference into having an additional tablet or laptop to run more advanced apps.

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