iPhone 4 Glass Breaks 82% More Often than 3GS? Not So Fast

You might have read or a friend might have told you that glass on Apple’s new iPhone 4 is 82 percent more likely than the older 3GS model’s to break. Given all of the iPhone 4 hate that ‘Antennagate’ generated during the new smartphone’s launch, those who are less than fond of the iPhone have more ammunition now to hurl. The only problem though, is that the company making the claims—SquareTrade—sells warranties for them. Keep that in mind.

So what do SquareTrade’s number say? 4.7% of iPhone 4 owners reported damage to their device within the first four months. In contrast, only 2.8% of iPhone 3GS owners reported damage to their device within the first four months.  More than 80% of all warrant claims that SquareTrade processed for the survey for iPhone 4s regarded damaged screens. SquareTrade took a sample of 20,000 iPhone 4 users and 20,000 iPhone 3GS users that had purchased a warranty plan for their survey.

Ignoring the fact that SquareTrade definitively is not an unbiased source, let’s look at why this might be. The iPhone 3GS has the metal band around the sides while the iPhone 4 does not. The iPhone 4 also has glass on both the front and the back. While it may be Gorilla Glass, it still is glass. The glass on the iPhone 4 extends to the edges of the phone as well. A side impact that might be absorbed by an iPhone 3GS can quite easily transmit all of its force straight into the glass.

However, wasn’t everyone putting a case on their iPhone 4 during the Antennagate mess? The iPhone 3GS never suffered from it, so weren’t iPhone 3GS owners less likely to have an impact absorbing case on their model? Hmm.

Remember though, SquareTrade wants to sell you and your iPhone 4 a warranty. We will have to wait and see reports from other sources before anyone can claim that the iPhone 4 glass breaks 82% more often than the iPhone 3GS glass does. Maybe Apple or AT&T can enlighten us.

In the meantime, let me know if you have already managed to break or damage your iPhone 4. It seem to break easier than your older model? I have already managed to destroy one iPhone, so I feel your pain. Let me know what you think!

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