iPhone Glass Shattering September 27 2017

According to Apple, the glass used for its new iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 devices is the most durable glass ever used in a smartphone, but that hasn't helped the device resist shattering in a series of drop tests.

SquareTrade, a company that provides extended warranties for electronic devices, conducted drop tests on the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and, for comparative purposes, the Galaxy Note 8, which also has a glass body. Both of the iPhone 8 models and the Galaxy Note 8 shattered on all sides in every single drop test, including front and back drops at a distance of six feet, a 22-foot shot drop test, and a tumble test. Each test was conducted using the same equipment.

Ultimately, Square Trade gave the iPhone 8 a breakability score of 67, the iPhone 8 Plus a breakability score of 74, and the Galaxy Note 8 a breakability score of 80. At 67 and 74, iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are at "medium risk" of breakage from a drop, while the Galaxy Note 8 is at "high risk." The Galaxy Note 8 fared worse because it was non-functional after some of the tests, while the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus remained usable despite the broken glass.

Drop tests are never scientific and are not a reliable measure of durability because of the many variables involved when a device is dropped, but it's clear that even with the most durable glass used in a smartphone, the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are more prone to catastrophic breakage than previous-generation iPhones. While both sides of the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are now made of glass, the display and the body don't appear to share the same repair costs, so if you drop it on the wrong side, it's going to be an expensive fix. So be careful with your new iPhone.