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Tough smartphones best for arguments

Smartphone and tabletIf ever you've had your partner wake up in the middle of the night to tear your smartphone from your hands and hurl it against the wall, you're more than likely to understand the benefits of a tough phone and, what's more, you are certainly not alone.

According to a 2016 report from Deloitte, UK phone users are more addicted to their smartphones than ever before, with more than 30% saying that they check their phones in the dead of night and a similar percentage admitting that their incessant use has become a relationship issue that directly causes rows with their partners.

However, according to Paul Lee, head of technology, media and telecommunications research at Deloitte, this kind of night-time use is likely to be only a fleeting phenomenon. "We're getting used to how to use this tech which, let's remind ourselves, is just nine years old. When we have something new we tend to overreact to it," he said.

Data suggests that phone use arguments are most common among the 25-34-year-old demographic; in addition, 11% of over 65s also admit to phone overuse rows, although it is unclear just how many of these arguments result in phones being thrown in anger.

Of UK adults, 80% now own a smartphone (equivalent to nearly 40 million people) and because only a relatively small percentage of these are tough phones, it is likely that the vast majority of arguments that end with a phone being thrown also result in damage to or destruction of the offending handset.

The researchers at Deloitte indicate that they believe we may have reached "peak smartphone"; however, although this may be true there are individual sectors of the market that are expected to experience significant growth over the coming years, including the tough phone sector.

"Smartphones will not suffer the same fate as tablets. The replacement market is likely to remain healthy, and given the sizeable base of existing owners, smartphone sales are likely to remain in the tens of millions for the foreseeable future," said Mr Lee.