Obligatory Drop Test: iPhone 4S Vs Samsung Galaxy S II

SquareTrade really likes breaking new things. And true to form, they've gone and abused not only the new iPhone 4S, but also Samsung's Galaxy S II. But which one proved more durable? Guess.

The iPhone 4 has never been lauded for the durability of its glass panels. The iPhone 4S is no different. While the chemically-strengthened front screen could survive a tumble from waist and shoulder level, the back panel shattered instantly. And when dropped face down from waist level, the front screen exploded into pieces.

As for the Galaxy S II, it held up remarkably well. The plastic case took plenty of abuse, cracking and popping open. But the Gorilla Glass screen? Never shattered. Not even when dropped face down. So you know, if you have clumsy hands, maybe this vid will influence which phone you buy next. [SquareTrade]


Comments

    I would have thought apple would have fixed this issue.

    Apple wont fix it because they make more money repairing them ;)

    Didnt they promise a fix for this in iOS5?

      A software update isnt going to fix hardware issues

        U dun got trolled brother

        Bull - iOS5 fixes everything!

      Yes, but they also "promised" an iPhone 5 so all's fair.

    a 'fix' of the issue would mean a materials redesign. ie switching over to plastic which would change the feel of the device, one of it's selling points can be that it 'feels' sturdier and or heavier.

      or maybe it feels fragile because thats what it is,,,,, fragile glass

      That would certainly fit with Apple's mindset. As long as it feels better, it doesn't matter that it is actually much worse.

    The S GS11 has gorilla glass doesn't it? My wife has dropped hers, I went to pick it up with a sense of dread but was fine

    This is the proof, which I already suspected, that all that extra money to buy a "quality" product from Apple isn't necessarily paying for itself.

    I've always thought that about Apple products, even the MacBooks and iMacs: "They looks bloody nice.. but I'd hate to drop it."

    Interesting results after all the apple hoo-hah over their redesign. I have a nice thick back case on my galaxy s2 but it looks like I dont really need that. That being said I better tell my electronics-dropping-prone gf to keep the cover on her iPhone 4......

    At least change it to gorilla glass or something, paying for a phone that costs more than a SGSII.

    I dropped my SGS2 a few weeks ago, from waist high. It had a case on it and the screen managed to shatter. I shopped around and the cheapest repair was $180AUD. I've now invested in a very annoying flip leather case.

    I dropped my HTC desire more times than I can remember and never suffered a broken screen...

    While I believe that the SGSII is more durable - having only half as much glass to break to start with - you would need to drop a lot of phones face down before you got a big enough sample to make a call. There's too many variables. The iphone does have gorilla glass for the front screen after all, so you have to ensure that a slight variation in the impact doesn't result in one shattering when the other doesn't.

      +1

      You can't run a test once and call it scientific. I suspect the iPhone probably is more prone to breakage but if it had luckily survived and the GSII shattered would everyone have a reversed opinion about the two devices?

        Exactly, I drpped my 3GS onto a brick floor from waist high and it was fine, but that doesn't confirm it's stronger.

          3GS is very different. The thing that makes the iPhone 4 so much less durable is that the edges of the phone are . OTOH, with most other phone designs, including your 3GS, the glass is surrounded by plastic or metal and often recessed 0.5mm or so, which gives it excellent protection, as shown in the video. The results are not surprising at all and only an idiot would suggest that it might be any different if repeated 10 times or 1000. It is a very obvious consequence of the design.

            Whoops, missed a word. It should read that the edges of the iPhone 4 are all glass.

              I wasn't suggesting that the iPhone won't break more than the SGSII. I was suggesting that with one test you can't tell if it breaks 100 times as often or 0.1 times more.

                Yes, and I was saying you don't need any tests at all, you just need to look at the design top see that iPhone4 is going to break far more often.

      Are you serious? Try the fact that everyone i know who has an iphone also has a cracked screen. We all know the iphone cracks it's screen very easily so don't try and argue it.

        You should probably find less clumsy friends then..

        Sorry I've gone through two iPhones (upgraded) and no cases over three years and the most damage either has us a small crack in the plastic on the 3G.

        Mind you I'm using the crazy plan of, just don't drop it.

        Phones: unbreakable if you don't break them.

    I wonder who paid for the phones in this video?

      Warranty holders at squaretrade.com

    Took me 3 days to crack the screen of my Galaxy 2. :(

      Wow! I would have stopped after 2.

        You sir win a free chicken wrapped in bacon with beer stuffing.

    I've dropped my iPhone 4 out of a car (while parked) and even once drop-kicked it (by accident) and still doesn't have a scratch on it... I wouldn't try it again tho... I remember launching my old Nokia 3310 across the quad at school, took it hard, parts went everywhere.. But I just gathered them back, and clipped it back together, had the phone for another 2 years.

      Ahhh the 3310, I had one that got to the point where the case was held on by duct tape. Even then I had it for a year or 2 in that state.

    I've dropped my Galaxy SII twice onto concrete, once from waist height and once from shoulder height. Not a scratch either time.

    I have two friends who own both the Galaxy S2 and the iPhone4 (I know we are talking about the 4S, but still.) The iPhone using friend who hated his 3GS because of the experience and upgraded to the 4 got angry at it and threw the phone (He also supports Collingwood, so acts like this is usual for him) shattering the screen. This was 5 months ago and he still hasn't fixed it. He will probably get the iPhone5 when it comes out and throw that.

    My Galaxy owning friend, she is a clumsy 16 year old girl and is constantly dropping her phone. There are dints and chips all around the outside of the phone and a nice single crack in the glass. As a owner of a Galaxy S2 myself, this saddens me, and makes me glad I bought a case for it before I got the phone. Still, nothing stopping my gorilla grip hands from dropping the phone on a drunken night out.

    That being said. She has had her phone for a month, and I have had mine for almost 3, and I havn't got a single scratch on mine, anywhere.

    this depend on how you drop and the point reach the floor. can't be trusted.

    I gotta say that whilst I have no doubt at all that this experiment is perfectly repeatable, it wouldn't stop me buying an iPhone, in that I am not in the habit of dropping my phone. Now that I live on a marina, dropping anything almost certainly means dropping it into the sea, so I am probably more careful of things like that these days than I've ever been.

    I have never, nor will I ever, base my purchasing decision on how well something holds up to being dropped.

    However, I WILL base my decision on what I think of the manufacturer as a whole.

    So .. NOT buying anything with a lower case i in front of it's name or a half eaten fruit symbol on it.

    I know maybe twenty people with an iPhone4 and two of them have smashed the glass. That's a 10% breakage rate.
    Not sure how that compares with total phone-owning public, but I suspect it's a bit high.

    Both of them had it in their pocked and it fell out while getting out of the car. So a drop of maybe 2 - 3 feet. Neither had it in a case.

    I have always kept mine in a Apple bumper case, but needless to say I've been VERY careful since then.

    I expect the problem is that the screen sits proud of the stainless steel body, thus presenting an edge to the surface it strikes when dropped.

    Apple will not change its flawed design because it looks "pretty". I have to support apple on this because I easily make $200 a week on iphone repairs.

    I've dropped my sgs2 loads of times, even down 2 flights of concrete steps and it was fine. About a month ago I dropped it from knee height onto a pretty soft rug and that as they say is the straw that broke the camels back as the screen cracked. Still very usable but didn't look to great. I got a replacement screen online for 100bucks swapped it out which was really easy to do and now its as good as new. I've probably dropped it another 10 times since :/

    Don't drop it then. :)

    that sound as each phone hits the pavement is sickening...

    I've dropped my S2 so many times and it has plenty of tiny dents to show for it. I must admit my HTC Desire and my HTC Magic handled my drops slightly better. The screen is, thankfully, immortal.

    Nothing can beat the sturdiness of my old-school Asus P525 Windows Mobile 5.0 device from way back when :)

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