Media Release

Phone fails: 2,200 Aussies drop a smartphone on their face every night

  • 40% of Aussies have experienced a phone fail
  • 838 smartphones are dropped in the dunny per day
  •’s telltale signs on when it’s time to change phones

16 February, Sydney, Australia – New research by, the site that compares virtually everything, shows that if you’ve dropped your phone on your face while scrolling in bed you’re not alone.

The survey of 2, 306 respondents finds that 40% – equivalent to over 7.5 million Aussies – have experienced some kind of mobile phone mishap, proving our beloved devices can be a hazard to our health.

In fact, the top phone fail that happens to Aussies is dropping it on their face while in bed, with more than one in five people (21%) admitting to this potentially painful blunder in the last five years.

With these Aussies admitting to do so just once since 2013, that represents 2,199 people dropping their phone on their face every evening.

Alex Kidman, Tech Expert at, urges Aussies to be more careful with their phones.

“Whether we admit it or not, we’re on our smartphones a lot of the time, and we take them everywhere from the bedroom, to the beach and even the bathroom, so the chance of a mishap is quite likely.”

“Not only can you damage your phone, you can cause yourself and others harm. All too often we see people crossing the road glued to their phones, or even worse, texting while driving.”

A further 14% have pocket dialed someone they shouldn’t have.

“This has to be one of the most dread-inducing phone fails Aussies can experience. If you want to avoid facing the humiliation of a pocket dial, simply put a lock on your home screen and avoid using keyboard shortcuts for calls.”

Rounding out the top three most common phone fails is dropping your smartphone in the toilet, with 8% of Aussies admitting that their phone has gone for a dip in the dunny. This represents up to 838 phones taking a plunge in the loo everyday.

“Even though many phones tout water resistance, that’s for clean lab water. Dropping your phone in the toilet bowl can do a fair bit of damage to even the sturdiest handset.”

“If your phone does happen to go for an accidental swim the first thing you want to do is switch it off, pronto. You don’t want to give yourself an electric shock after having just dropped your whole life in the dunny.”

Worryingly, 3% of Australians have damaged their phone while attempting to take a selfie. That jumps to 7% for both Generation Y and Generation Z.

“Some people aren’t afraid to go to extreme lengths for an Insta-worthy ‘selfie’, but if you’re putting your phone, and more importantly your health, at risk, perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate your priorities.”

The most shocking phone fail is the number of Aussies (2%) who have almost been hit by a car because they were too busy looking at their phones.

“When we’re talking about life and death, you know it’s time to make a change.”

Aussies’ top phone fails
Dropped it on my face because I was messaging in bed21%
Pocket dialed someone I shouldn’t have14%
Dropped my phone in the toilet8%
Missed my train/bus stop because I was distracted6%
Went swimming with it/dropped in water5%
Lost it on public transport, Uber or taxi4%
Damaged it while taking a selfie3%
Almost gotten hit by a vehicle, because I was looking at my phone2%
Accidently put in the washing machine2%
Been fined because I was driving and on my phone2%
Forgotten in a hotel room1%

Signs it’s time to buy a new phone

1. The battery has carked it
If your mobile phone battery is only lasting a few short hours, and you can notice it getting worse and worse, it’s probably time to upgrade your phone. The same goes if it takes hours to charge. It can often be quite pricey to replace a mobile phone battery so most of the time it’s better to purchase a new handset altogether.

2. It has a mind of its own
Have you ever been midway through writing a text message only to have your phone randomly switch off or restart itself? Phones can get a bit temperamental the older they get, and the random shutdown of apps, services or even worse the entire phone can become quite common.

3. Your touch screen lags
If your phone frequently ignores your incessant swiping and tapping it’s time to trade up. There’s no point in walking around with a phone that doesn’t actually do what you want it to.

4. Apps aren’t compatible
Tried downloading an app only to find your phone can’t support it? This is rare, but if companies have stopped updating or even making apps for your operating system, it’s definitely time to upgrade.


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About Finder

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Our free service is 100% independently-owned by three Australians: Fred Schebesta, Frank Restuccia and Jeremy Cabral. Since launching in 2006, Finder has helped Aussies find what they need from 1,800+ brands across 100+ categories.

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12.6 million average unique monthly audience (June- September 2019), Nielsen Digital Panel

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