I consider myself pretty lucky, overall, for how rarely I've broken my phone in the number of times it has flown out of my hands three, four, or even five feet in the air. These are times I've misjudged a throw onto a bed or couch and had it bounce off onto the floor; times I thought I had it perfectly balanced on that uneven surface; times I thought my grip was firm and true only for that grip to give out unexpectedly; and times I went to reach for it but didn't so much reach for it as Falcon-punch it off the surface where it rested. My phone seems to spend almost as much time in the air or on the ground, face down, in a quantum superposition of shattered and intact, as it does safely in my hands.
One recent and unusually fun Tuesday, in my happy-hour two-drink overconfidence, I attempted a bold maneuver. I put my phone back in my crowded purse. Rather than pulling it off, the phone went rogue and flew out of my hands, landing on its bottom-right corner on the pavement. A spiderweb of cracks spread across the screen. I'd done it again.
Cracked screens are a little-studied phenomenon in smartphone ownership, presumably because researchers have much better things to do. One survey from 2013 by a "mobile insurance" company with an obvious vested interest in reminding everyone how fragile their phones are suggested that as many as 23 percent of iPhone owners (of the 2,471 surveyed) have cracked their screens.