DigitalizationMany consumers refrain from repairing their damaged smartphones

Today, the digital association Bitkom published results of a new survey on the topic of smartphone repairs. According to the results, 37 percent of German consumers have already taken advantage of repair offers from manufacturers, retailers or workshops for their damaged smartphones.

For this representative survey, Bitkom Research on behalf of the digital association Bitkom conducted telephone interviews in August and September 2021 with a total of 1,003 people in Germany aged 16 and above on how they deal with smartphones damages and repairs.

These are further details:

  • 37 percent of German consumers have already had their smartphone repaired after being damaged – 19 percent by the manufacturer, 16 percent at a retailer and six percent at an independent repair shop. 17 percent said they had also repaired their smartphone themselves.
  • At 92 percent, most consumers reported having already had a damaged device.
  • The most common types of smartphone damages included a cracked display (77 percent) or shell (41 percent), problems with the battery (32 percent), broken speakers (24 percent) or microphones (22 percent) due to dust or crumbs, and accidental contact with water (19 percent).
  • 57 percent of respondents said they were responsible for the damage themselves, and for 16 percent it was someone else. 21 percent saw general wear and tear as the cause, and for two percent the device was defective at factory.
  • Instead of repair, 52 percent bought a new device upon damage, where possible, 15 percent continued to use their smartphone despite the damage.
  • As a reason for refraining from repairing damaged devices, 80 percent of consumers said it was too expensive for them. A further 55 percent felt the repair was too complicated, and 45 percent were planning to buy a new smartphone anyway.

Bernhard Rohleder, Bitkom CEO, commented: "The existing repair offers must be made more attractive - and with effective political levers. One of these would be a tax break to make repairs more affordable for consumers. An obligation to stockpile and produce a variety of spare parts for many years is likely to generate more waste than it avoids. In addition to making repairs less expensive, it would also be important to promote and research new technologies, such as the production of spare parts from 3D printers. This is not only cheaper and more environmentally friendly than flying spare parts to Germany from Asia, for example – but it also opens up the possibility of producing spare parts for older devices."

Source: Bitkom

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