• Only half (50%) of Brits use the safety features on their smartphone
  • Just 27% of people have used their smartphone to help them when they have been in danger
  • A quarter of men (24%) use smartphone safety features, compared to just 16% of women

The rise of smartphones has changed the way we deal with emergencies – from calling someone when lost or in danger, to emergency contacts and panic button apps. Evidently, phones are making it easier to stay safe, but are people making use of these features?

Mobiles.co.uk, an online mobile retailer, conducted in-depth research to produce a white paper on the safety features available on smartphones and surveyed the British public to see how they utilise them.

The white paper discusses current apps and features designed to protect us, supported by a look into the public’s perception of them and real life case studies. It also examines the link between smartphones and personal safety.

To understand the public’s attitude to smartphone safety features mobiles.co.uk asked Brits if they were aware of the GPS trackers, emergency contacts, panic button apps and emergency medical information features available on smartphones, and whilst 74% were, just half (50%) use them.

GPS trackers and emergency contacts are the most known safety features, with 47% and 43% of people being aware they existed, respectively. However, despite nearly half of people recognising the features, just a quarter (25%) had either of them installed.

Interestingly, more than two-thirds (67%) of people said they felt vulnerable when they don’t have their phone with them, but just 27% have used their smartphone to help them when they have been in danger.

Despite some safety apps being marketed at women, it is men who use them more. On average 40% of men are aware of the safety features on smartphones, with 24% of men using them. However, just 30% of women have heard of the features, with a mere 16% using them.

Andy Cartledge, Mobile Expert at Mobiles.co.uk, said: “The advancements in technology over the past few years mean that smartphones and apps can now offer really sophisticated safety features. 

“Companion is a great app which helps people walk home safely by linking a map with the user’s location to contacts in their phonebook, similarly there is the ASPIRE News App which looks like a regular news app, but has hidden features that give domestic abuse victims discreet access to hotlines and resources. 

“Despite a wealth of smartphone safety features out there, it is strange that not many people use them. That is why we have created this white paper as a way to highlight and inform people on the amazing smartphone features that can help protect us!”

Visit the Mobiles.co.uk blog posts to read in-depth reports into:

Safety features available on smartphones: Do Smart Phones Make You Safer

Link between smartphones and crime: The Link Between Mobiles and Crime


Total sample size was over 1,006 UK adults (aged 18+) in partnership with The Leadership Factor

*Respondents asked on emergency contacts, GPS trackers, Panic buttons and emergency medical info

About Mobiles.co.uk – The smart phone people

Mobiles.co.uk is a leading mobile phone retail brand, owned by Dixons Carphone.

Specialising in smartphones, they provide an extensive range of the best new handsets, offering the best contract, upgrade and SIM-only deals.

Mobiles.co.uk was the UK’s first online mobile phone retailer, with 20 years’ experience and expertise on handsets and tablets, recently winning ‘Best Online Retailer 2013’ at the Mobile Choice Consumer Awards, ‘Best Online Retailer 2016’ at the Mobile Industry Awards and  ‘Best Online Retailer 2014 & 2015’ and ’Best Pay Monthly Retailer 2016’ at the uSwitch Mobile Awards. ​​

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