7 untimely gadget deaths and how to protect yours

Handheld devicesIncreasingly, our lives are being organized and connected to others through gadgets -- smart phones, iPads and iPhones -- which go wherever we go. While these gadgets share our adventures, often they don't come through the experience as well as we do, as evidenced by these seven gadget deaths, which Aaron Cooper, director of marketing for Worth Ave Group, an Insurance provider for smart phones and gadgets, shared with WalletPop.

Seven Untimely Gadget Deaths:

Death by Vomit - Cooper shares that vomit is one of the frequent causes for a claim at Worth Ave Group. These claims though, aren't always tied to new parents who find their phone covered in sweet potato puree. They also come from young adults who, after a night of partying, find out that their iPhone, much like their stomach, couldn't handle that extra shot of Captain Morgan.

Waking a Sleeping Cat - The saying may be to let a sleeping dog lie, but Cooper recounts the tale of a cat who awakened by a vibrating cell phone and in an attempt to hit the snooze button to continue his cat nap, smacked the phone off the table, turning it into a paperweight.

Ground Floor Please -
No, this phone wasn't an extra in M. Night Shyamalan's latest thriller Devil, but it was a victim of unfortunate circumstances involving an elevator. More than one Worth Ave customer has had to call and make a claim for phones dropped down the elevator shaft.

Forgetfulness and Trust - One of the more common and less thrilling problems facing gadgets is forgetfulness, or trust in your surroundings. Whether it's a phone left on the coffee shop table or an iPhone hooked up to the sound system to power the party, both have a Criss Angel-like habit of disappearing.

Toilet Talking - We're still unsure of who continues to toilet talk, or stall surf, without wrapping their gadget in an OtterBox case, but stall soaked phones remain one of the most common claims for the Worth Ave. Group. Unfortunately, you will need to retrieve your gadget from the toilet bowl and send it in to file your claim. Cooper does ask that you place it in a plastic bag and clearly identify that it has made a trip to the porcelain pool.

The Road Warrior's Lament - Frequent travelers know how easy it is to leave a coffee or a bag on top of your car, and now they can add leaving the iPad on the roof as well. Cooper retells the story of an unfortunate individual who left the iPad on the roof and took off for home. He quickly realized his mistake, but in the haste to return, ran over the iPad, ensuring that it wouldn't be able to play another game of Angry Birds.

Lawnmower Man - If you have to spend Saturday afternoon mowing the lawn, you may as well do it with some good tunes, but pay attention to those bumps so you don't end up like the unfortunate user who mowed his phone. In case you wonder what that might look like, we suggest you take a look at the Will it Blend? series which pits popular gadgets against a Blendtec Blender.

How to Protect your gadget:

There are many methods of insuring your items including direct from the purchaser, your insurance company or with third parties such as Worth Ave Group or SquareTrade. These services will insure your device for a monthly or annual premium and, depending on the policy, replace your item or send you a check for its value.

Unlike many gadget insurance services, which often require users to sign up within 30-days of purchasing their device, Worth Ave Group allows users to purchase iPhone or smart phone insurance at any time.

Pricing depends on the device you have, but typically includes a $50 deductible. For example, insuring an iPad for a year would be $42, a new 16GB iPhone 4 would be $80 for a year and other smart phones begin at $45 a year for $399 in coverage. This insurance is different than an in-store warranty in that it covers accidental damage and theft instead of just covering manufacturer defects.

At Worth Ave Group, if your phone breaks or is stolen, you file a claim and will receive the cost of your device minus the $50 deductible, so that you can go purchase a new device. Unlike some in-store warranties, the insurance continues on your replacement device without the need to buy another warranty.
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