Mossberg dropped his - worried these are drop-prone

hipnetic

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 5, 2010
958
284
So Walt Mossberg dropped his phone, but like all reviewers with insider access to Apple, he seemed to be quick to make excuses for why it was totally his fault and not Apple's. Then in the next paragraph, he talks about how slippery they are, but then qualifies again how that supposedly had nothing to do with the drop. Yeah right.

I'm going to rant a bit: All this metal and glass makes things slippery. Quite honestly, I've always felt that all of that metal and glass made the iPhone 4 and up models beautiful to look at, but very impractical to actually use.

When I upgraded to the 5, I liked the added screen size, but found that I had to be even more careful using it one-handed. It now became quite top-heavy when typing. These 6's are only going to be worse in that regard.

I know people think that plastic cases make things look cheap, but I want to actually use my phone and not worry about it slipping out of my hand. I would much rather have a phone with that grippy rubbery plastic that some manufacturer's use. And, no, I don't want to use a case. A case makes the phone bigger and cause lint and dust to congregate near the camera opening.

Another thought: I think someone needs to reinvent the smartphone again. Apple did a great job looking at what the Palm, Handspring, Blackberry, and Windows Mobile teams accomplished and reinventing the segment with an all-screen finger (not stylus) optimized touchscreen, UI optimized for finger use, etc. And that device was designed from the ground up to be optimized for a specific size.

Well, people want devices with bigger screens, and I'm one of them. But someone needs to rethink the physical design as well as the UI to make sure we can still use these things in a one-handed manner safely and comfortably. Apple's double-tap to shrink UI isn't a bad idea, but it's got a couple of problems: It only moves things down, it needs to shrink away from the left side (or right side, if you use the phone left-handedly) so that you also don't have to reach as far across right-to-left. Also, if you need to access several things at the top of the screen in succession, you need to double-tap between each action. It should offer you a quick way (maybe a triple-tap?) of having it shrink and stay shrunk, until you un-shrink it.

As for the device itself, the bottom back and sides (if not the whole thing) need to have a grippy rubber texture. And they should rebalance the weight distribution so that the bottom is heavier than the top.

Is this going to stop me from upgrading to an iPhone 6? Probably not, but I'm thinking more about whether I should play it safer and go with the 6 vs the 6+. I'm also wondering if I should give some consideration to other alternatives (Android and Windows Phone) which not only have some of the rubberized case designs I mentioned, but also cost less to replace in case of an accident.

But, I'm tied into the Apple ecosystem, and I'd prefer to stick with it for now. So, I think I may have to plan to get a case of some sort (yuck).
 

Menel

macrumors 603
Aug 4, 2011
6,199
1,047
Walt is a grey haired old man. He's probably got the shakes.

Apple does offer a silicone and leather case for it though ;)

They didn't make cases for the 5 at launch...

They already had the bumpers ready ahead of time for the 4's launch, ahead of antenna gate to solve it. ;)
 

MICHAELSD

macrumors 68040
Jul 13, 2008
3,693
1,054
NJ
I think the Plus may be easier to drop and also easier to shatter much as an iPad is. Although I've never dropped an iPad, it'd be a safe bet to put a case on a Plus.
 

willmtaylor

macrumors G4
Oct 31, 2009
10,193
7,722
Here(-ish)
I'm ordering a batting glove and extra pine tar to use with mine. Louisville all the way; I don't skimp. It may get a little dirty, but that's good luck come October.
 

840quadra

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 1, 2005
8,091
3,383
Twin Cities Minnesota
I know you hate them, but I think the solution in your situation, would be to get a slim fitting rubber (or otherwise grippy) case for your phone. With their phones being as small as they are (slim), a good quality case shouldn't make the device that much bigger, or create too much of an issue with someone wanting a slim, easy to grip device. I also think the much hated 'protruding' camera will not be as recessed as you may think.

My 5s has been inside of an Apple Leather case since day #1. I have not had any issues with dirt, lint, or even abrasive dust getting between the phone and the case. A well built case will prevent many of your gripes from ever happening.
 

GrimmsGirl

macrumors 6502
Sep 22, 2013
342
27
The only times I ever dropped my iPhones were when they fell out of my lap when I stood up. No idea if that is less prone to happen with my 6plus or not. Will I be less likely to forget it's in my lap? Maybe, maybe not. At 6 point something ounces it's not exactly heavy, but it's more noticeable because of the size. With the 4.7" 6, I'd say the chances were higher. I have never dropped one just holding it though. How does that happen, unless you're trying to text with one hand and it slips before you can readjust? That said, I hate cases, but I bought one anyway and a shield for the front. My guess is I'll use it for a few months and then take it off in favor of a Zagg shield on the back and some type of glass shield on the front. I find the Zagg shields provide a bit of extra grip. It was more the protruding camera that forced me into the case.
 

james92se

macrumors 6502a
Jun 21, 2010
817
27
Dallas, TX
I have owned every generation of iPhone for 7 continuous years now, the majority of the time totally caseless, and have never once shattered a screen or dropped it into a sink or toilet.

I honestly have never understood how this is such a big problem or worry for a surprisingly large segment of the population.
 

Harmonious Zen

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2013
623
238
I have owned every generation of iPhone for 7 continuous years now, the majority of the time totally caseless, and have never once shattered a screen or dropped it into a sink or toilet.

I honestly have never understood how this is such a big problem or worry for a surprisingly large segment of the population.
I think it's the fact that if you just drop it even once it's bye bye phone. I've dropped my phone many times, thankfully never on super hard surfaces so nothing has ever happened.
 

webbuzz

macrumors 68000
Jul 24, 2010
1,522
5,635
If Walt is "making excuses" for Apple, he wouldn't have mentioned dropping it.

Some of you people and your conspiracy theories crack me up.
 

jlake02

macrumors 68020
Nov 2, 2008
2,258
1
L.A.
It will be a bit slippery, just like the 4 was. People who are worried about it will get cases. People who aren't, won't. Some will get broken. Just the way it always goes. :)
 

zhenya

macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2005
6,360
2,825
No thanks.

I've held the majority of alternative smartphones on the market and the vast majority of them feel cheap. For something as expensive as my phone that I interact with this frequently, I want it to be made really premium.

If you look hard enough there are always cases or bumpers out there that give some protection but barely alter the size or feel of the phone.
 

munakib

macrumors 6502
May 22, 2011
493
42
I seriously dislike his opinions. I like/love the iPhone like the next guy but Walt is an Apple Apologist, (his bias just kills me)

"I dropped the iPhone 6 Apple had lent me for this review. It fell flat on its screen from about five feet onto a concrete driveway when I got distracted while taking a photo. This was entirely my fault. But the entire screen was full of cracks. The phone continued to work perfectly, but Apple sent me another to complete my tests. The moral, which most iPhone users already know: Use a case."

Oh so you should buy the sleek phone and also hide it inside a box so that it is safe. Why would you say Use a case, its almost as Jobs saying you are holding it wrong.
 

odditie

macrumors 6502
Jan 6, 2004
290
183
Which phone does Walt have? Was it the Plus?
Walt Mossberg said:
Late in my testing, I dropped the iPhone 6 Apple had lent me for this review. It fell flat on its screen from about five feet onto a concrete driveway when I got distracted while taking a photo. This was entirely my fault. But the entire screen was full of cracks. The phone continued to work perfectly, but Apple sent me another to complete my tests. The moral, which most iPhone users already know: Use a case.

I had only two problems with the iPhone 6 during my week of testing. First, its width and smooth back can make it feel a bit slippery in your palm until you get used to it (this was not the cause of my dropping incident, as I was holding it with two hands, but the moral above still applies.)
http://recode.net/2014/09/16/iphone-6-review/

He makes it very clear that it had nothing to do with the phone.
 

megapopular

macrumors 6502a
Aug 21, 2007
737
10
I wonder how much of this is due to muscle memory... We get used to holding a phone a certain way with a certain case or without a case for quite some time... And your brain is used to the other device. Probably makes it more likely to drop early on before you get used to holding the new device. Being careful may make it even more likely to drop it!
 

dmaxdmax

macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2006
617
97
I'm a klutz and have dropped my phone many, many times. An otterbox has saved my 5s at least a half dozen times. A plastic fun case (TARDIS) protected my 5 at least a few times before failing and letting the screen shatter on the day the 5s was announced. (no joke - it was an actual accident)

For me a case is like a condom. I don't want to use one but in the words of The Rolling Stones, you can't always get what you want. When I got engaged I stopped using condoms but much as I love my phone I can't actually marry it.
 

Geckotek

macrumors G3
Jul 22, 2008
8,543
78
NYC
I have owned every generation of iPhone for 7 continuous years now, the majority of the time totally caseless, and have never once shattered a screen or dropped it into a sink or toilet.

I honestly have never understood how this is such a big problem or worry for a surprisingly large segment of the population.
I can ALMOST say the same thing. I did drop my 4S into a urinal once. Couple of days in rice and all was well though. Some guy visiting from overseas bought it on Christmas day a few years ago.
 

Steve686

macrumors 68040
Nov 13, 2007
3,182
1,121
US>FL>Miami/Dade>Sunny Isles Beach>Condo
If you are worried about slippage see if you can find some spare pieces of Zagg Invisible shield and apply a couple of ultra thin strips the the outside edges of the phone, and maybe a piece or two on the back.

It is clear material and has a slightly tacky feel to it. This will def help if you are that worried about dropping the phone because of the smoothness.
 

hasanahmad

macrumors 65816
May 20, 2009
1,150
822
So Walt Mossberg dropped his phone, but like all reviewers with insider access to Apple, he seemed to be quick to make excuses for why it was totally his fault and not Apple's. Then in the next paragraph, he talks about how slippery they are, but then qualifies again how that supposedly had nothing to do with the drop. Yeah right.

I'm going to rant a bit: All this metal and glass makes things slippery. Quite honestly, I've always felt that all of that metal and glass made the iPhone 4 and up models beautiful to look at, but very impractical to actually use.

When I upgraded to the 5, I liked the added screen size, but found that I had to be even more careful using it one-handed. It now became quite top-heavy when typing. These 6's are only going to be worse in that regard.

I know people think that plastic cases make things look cheap, but I want to actually use my phone and not worry about it slipping out of my hand. I would much rather have a phone with that grippy rubbery plastic that some manufacturer's use. And, no, I don't want to use a case. A case makes the phone bigger and cause lint and dust to congregate near the camera opening.

Another thought: I think someone needs to reinvent the smartphone again. Apple did a great job looking at what the Palm, Handspring, Blackberry, and Windows Mobile teams accomplished and reinventing the segment with an all-screen finger (not stylus) optimized touchscreen, UI optimized for finger use, etc. And that device was designed from the ground up to be optimized for a specific size.

Well, people want devices with bigger screens, and I'm one of them. But someone needs to rethink the physical design as well as the UI to make sure we can still use these things in a one-handed manner safely and comfortably. Apple's double-tap to shrink UI isn't a bad idea, but it's got a couple of problems: It only moves things down, it needs to shrink away from the left side (or right side, if you use the phone left-handedly) so that you also don't have to reach as far across right-to-left. Also, if you need to access several things at the top of the screen in succession, you need to double-tap between each action. It should offer you a quick way (maybe a triple-tap?) of having it shrink and stay shrunk, until you un-shrink it.

As for the device itself, the bottom back and sides (if not the whole thing) need to have a grippy rubber texture. And they should rebalance the weight distribution so that the bottom is heavier than the top.

Is this going to stop me from upgrading to an iPhone 6? Probably not, but I'm thinking more about whether I should play it safer and go with the 6 vs the 6+. I'm also wondering if I should give some consideration to other alternatives (Android and Windows Phone) which not only have some of the rubberized case designs I mentioned, but also cost less to replace in case of an accident.

But, I'm tied into the Apple ecosystem, and I'd prefer to stick with it for now. So, I think I may have to plan to get a case of some sort (yuck).
you can also be an adult and hold it properly