Glass back? WHY? Doesn't it break easily?

French Quarter

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 10, 2017
6
2
Glass back? WHY? Doesn't it break easily?

I ask, because it seems the new iPhone 8 will use a lot of glass, especially on the back and as structural strength???

I read on reviews that glass is strong... but in real life, every single person I know with a glass-backed iPhone has gotten it cracked... they all have ugly, barely useable cracked glass iPhones.

I have aluminum and steel iPhones, iPads, and iPods... and not one has ever cracked or broken on me. I still have an old iPod Touch 3 that works perfect, while everyone's iPhones from that era is cracked glass. I can toss them around and drop them, and they're just fine. (Not that I try to damage them.)

I don't understand how glass backs are a good idea.

And don't they still have to put something under the glass? Or is it just a plastic shield with the apple logo, under the glass back?

I personally prefer metal bodies. Glass barely survives on the face!

(Though, I have personally NEVER had a broken glass Apple product in all my years. But more glass does scare me.)
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
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So here they are "Never" cracked even though they got hit few times but survived with minor dings and scratches on the metal borders. Otherwise in all original and working condition.

View attachment 712512
4S/SE/4/5S
It would be difficult to crack the back of an SE and 5s, as those are aluminum casings, not glass.

Edit: @Sunny1990. The one picture you indicated shattered is NOT in your original post. Nor would that apply here.
 
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Newtons Apple

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Mar 12, 2014
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I think the choice of glass for the back of the 8 is done.

Do not drop your phone.

Not so worried about the back as the I am about the screen having such small bezels on the long edges. Will not take much of a drop or hit to turn your screen into trash. I might make an exception and get AC+ for the first time on an Apple phone.
 

French Quarter

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 10, 2017
6
2
You kind of lost me when you stated, "Every single person I know with a glass-backed iPhone has gotten it cracked".
You then state, "I have personally never had a broken glass Apple product in all my years".
That's because I never had a device with a glass BACK. Only a glass front. I never broke my front, and never had a glass back to break. But yes, I hardly know a person who hasn't broken their glass... especially if it's a glass back. I don't understand how that statement confuses you.
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
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You missed it, the Glass on both top and bottom of 5 series did Crack with back drop

View attachment 712513
The housing/casing is primarily aluminum with the SE and 5s as pictured. That's not a fully glassed backing, which the the 4s/4 was housed completely in glass. The issues with the 4s and 4 were completely encased in glass and when dropped, resulted in shattering as @eyoungren picture indicated In Post #4.
 
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bluej3

macrumors member
Aug 8, 2017
32
22
Because glass back will be so cool. It will be a beautiful piece of work And cases are always available to protect, so i think it will survive as it did before in many hands
 

GrumpyMom

macrumors G3
Sep 11, 2014
8,662
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Well my completely flat Samsung Galaxy S7 survived two nasty incidents where it got flung out of the VR goggles due to the spring loaded latch and landed on hardwood floors from about six feet at the height of its trajectory. Not so much as a scratch.

However I have talked to three guys who cracked their S7 Edges from modest drops of less than 18 inches. And my husband dropped his Note 7 and shattered the corner of it. There is a point of vulnerability on the corners of the glass phones with curved edges.

I carried my iPhone 4 without a case for about three years. I dropped it a few times and it never broke. In fact, I didn't even realize it was made of glass! :eek: My husband eventually told me when he cracked his iPhone 4 and I was shocked.

I think the flat design should be okay. I saw torture tests of the LG G6 where it survived some serious abuse. So I know it's possible to make a tough phone with glass fronts and backs. But then there is the fragile HTC U11 where we see how bad it can be.

We can only wait and see.
 

Johnluke91

macrumors member
Jul 9, 2016
84
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Italy
The glass of my iPhone 4S has never broken, despite having dropped without the case.
My iPhone 6 with his stupid aluminum had already folded the day I bought it.
The structural strength is given by stainless steel frame, in fact the 4S is the most durable.
 
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PaladinGuy

macrumors 6502a
Sep 22, 2014
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Keep in mind, the iPhone 4(s) had an easily replaceable glass back. If the new iPhone is the same, I think it's a benefit. You cannot repair dented or bent aluminum.
 
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Jimmy James

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Oct 26, 2008
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That's because I never had a device with a glass BACK. Only a glass front. I never broke my front, and never had a glass back to break. But yes, I hardly know a person who hasn't broken their glass... especially if it's a glass back. I don't understand how that statement confuses you.
Glass front! WHY? Doesn't it break easily?
 

Zaft

macrumors 601
Jun 16, 2009
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Brooklyn, NY
Keep in mind, the iPhone 4(s) had an easily replaceable glass back. If the new iPhone is the same, I think it's a benefit. You cannot repair dented or bent aluminum.
Yup, it was VERY easy and cheap to replace on the 4/4S.
[doublepost=1502457508][/doublepost]
Ahh the iPhone 4/4S design was so awesome when it came out.. blew me away. That design should seriously be in a tech museum, the peak of Steve Jobs.
 

pojo1806

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Feb 6, 2013
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Personally owned an iPhone 4, 5S/SE which don't really count I guess, S6, S7 and S7 Edge that all had glass backs and I never broke one. Not to say it doesn't happen but I'm not worried about the iPhone 8 breaking on me.
 

eyoungren

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Aug 31, 2011
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Ahh the iPhone 4/4S design was so awesome when it came out.. blew me away. That design should seriously be in a tech museum, the peak of Steve Jobs.
I understand the sentinment behind your post, but realize I have the 4s by default, not necessarily because I agree with you (although I don't hate on this phone as much as I used to).

I bought it for my son for his birthday from a friend and it came back to me when my son got my wife's old iPhone 5.

It's a nice enough phone (it IS an iPhone after all) but for me the model I like most is the iPhone 5 (Black/Slate). I waited an entire year for Apple to release the 5 in order not to get the 4s.

All in all the 4s is a decent phone and I appreciate it's design. I've just never been in love with it like with my iPhone 5.
 
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willmtaylor

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Oct 31, 2009
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Phones are designed to be used, not dropped. If you plan on dropping your phone, invest in AC+, get a good case, or both. Better yet, don’t buy it. Simple as that.
 
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phr0z3n

macrumors member
May 15, 2011
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I’m aware, which is why I use a case & purchase with CC. But it’s not a foremost design priority.
Ok, I read your post wrong. My bad. It seemed like you were recommending not getting the phone if you think you may drop it one day.

Either way, I don't have a problem with the glass back. My 4s felt solid as a rock in my hand and I dropped it multiple times and it never shattered. My 6 feels flimsier than my 4s did. In my experiences, Apple usually has solid build quality so it shouldn't be too much of an issue, unless someone is operating in extreme conditions like a construction site or something.

YMMV, of course.
 
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