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Scratches Appear On The Back Of iPhone 4

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During Apple’s WWDC keynote this month, the iPhone 4 was being praised, in part, for its extremely durable and strong display. According to Apple, the all-glass front and back finish of the iPhone 4 uses material that is apparently “more scratch resistant than ever”. More than ever! So it must top the Original iPhone, the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS. A bold claim to be sure.

Apple has also released their own version of a case for the iPhone 4, called Bumpers, that protect the edge of the device but leaves the back and front of the iPhone 4 exposed. So clearly Apple has confidence in their scratch-resistant iPhone.

While many early iPhone 4 reviews indicated that the device is rather durable and receiving no damage after being dropped, Engadget now reports that several scratches have been found on the back of its review unit after only five days.

The photo you’re seeing above is our leader Joshua’s iPhone 4 review unit, snapped by Ryan Block just moments ago. Ryan pointed out that there are some nasty scratches on the back of the phone. While we don’t have any better photos of it at the moment, Josh told us that they’re hard to see unless in bright light, but they look pretty notable to us for a five day-old unit made of Gorilla Glass.

It is worth pointing out that Apple indicated that the iPhone 4 is more scratch-resistant and not scratch-proof. Existing iPhone 3G/3GS users know all too well how easy it is to scratch the back of their devices.

However, after only five days of use (and it’s difficult to gauge what kind of “use” this is), it is surprising to see scratches. For a device that is supposed to be more scratch-resistant, the iPhone 4 seems to slightly mimic the iPhone 3G/3GS in terms of scratching the back of the device.

This may be of concern to Canadian iPhone 4 buyers next month, but there are solutions to avoid scratches almost entirely. I know the first thing I’ll be purchasing after my iPhone 4 is the InvisibleSHIELD from Zagg.

So what do you think? Is the iPhone 4 really more scratch-resistant? Or is a full-body film protector the way to go?

[Engadget]

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  • wuju

    I will always put a skin on the back and screen protector in the front. Regardless how scratch resistanoce unless it's made out of diamond.

  • Joker Eh

    I don't know these guys from Engadget are starting to annoy me, anything to get more publicity to their site. I question how the scratches got there.

  • Chrome262

    with its new shape it should be a breeze to put on a protective film, the old back was a nightmare at times as it was hard to line the films up.

  • Ex

    That's true! Great observation!

  • Xaroc

    The flat back I noted way back when gizmodo released pictures. My fears of crazy scratches when being set down on a table looks like is coming to pass. What a shame… I hoped apple would pleasently surprise me.

  • “I know the first thing I’ll be purchasing after my iPhone 4 is the InvisibleSHIELD from Zagg.”

    Ah yes, the sponsors will love that. =)

  • Ex

    Do you not have a screen protector?
    I have the InvisibleSHIELD on every one of my iPhones, iPad, and my Mac!

  • Scott

    If that's what they call a nasty scratch, then they must cry “the sky is falling” almost daily.
    If they are hard to see except in bright light, how nasty can they be – and did they even try to clean it?
    Could just be a deposit from whatever it was bumped against and will buff/wipe off.

    I have never had a screen protector on any of my iPhones and have no visible scratches (other than tiny ones in the shiny apple logo). I certainly won't be wasting my money to make my phone ugly – defeats the purpose of buying a beautifully designed toy if the first thing you are going to do is cover it up and never expose it.

  • dashparr

    i entered their iPad contest and won 50% off the entire website! I bought three full body screen shields!

  • Nope, I don't. The back of my iPod is fairly scratched up, but there isn't a mark on the front. And I've had this guy for three and a half years, and Apple have since improved the scratch resistance by a large percent. I personally don't see the need, plus is kind of uglifies the sleek look of the iPhone.

  • Ex

    Eek!

    Well I hope your screen never gets scratched! I wouldn't be able to
    look at my iPhone if there was a scratch on the display staring back
    at me!

    Also, many protectors are clear, so aside from the edge, they don't
    really take away from the look/design of the device.

  • Inv

    I've ordered ZAGG Skins for both mine and my girlfriend's iPhone 4's… Now I'm just waiting on the phone itself.

  • Inv

    Yeah, the back skin will be as easy as a screen protector!

  • “More scratch-resistant” is not a bold claim. Nor is it a claim disproved by the photo. Who is this post sponsored by, again?

  • Yeah, I also bought an iPhone 4 invisibleSHIELD when I somehow managed to snag the 50% off coupon from their Twitter deals. Now, it's time to GET the damn iPhone. HURRY UP BIG 3!

  • Joker Eh

    ditto.

  • kamal

    What's the code? Sharing is caring!

  • Miguel

    I'm confused about why everyone is thinking that the new glass is vastly superior. There has been almost no change from the previous generation. Here's the only statement from Apple on the subject:

    “All the breakthrough technology in iPhone 4 is situated between two glossy panels of aluminosilicate glass — the same type of glass used in the windshields of helicopters and high-speed trains. Chemically strengthened to be 20 times stiffer and 30 times harder than plastic, the glass is ultradurable and more scratch resistant than ever.”

    The only comparison claim they are making is that the glass is more scratch resistant in Iphone 4! Aluminosilicate glass was always used in all the iphone versions and it was always 20x stiffer, 30x harder than plastic, and ultradurable.

  • well then. geuss I'll be waiting for the white version release. less visible scratches :I

  • chantellejoy

    Who is *every* post sponsored by, again? Your argument is invalid.
    Unless, your argument is that because this blog has an affiliate deal with Zagg,, it should not report on surface-damanged iPhones, ever. That would be slightly less invalid.

    Not to mention that it's information from Engadget (as per the source link), clearly they're trying to hock InvisibleSheilds too, right?

  • Ex

    (Wickens = owned)

  • You read a lot of stuff into that question that I did not say, and then ignored my two main, substantive points. Owned, indeed.

  • chantellejoy

    I was commenting on the last sentence only. You're totally entitled to your opinions about the article (your first two points. In fact, I agree that calling someting “more scratch resistant than ever” is indeed, NOT a bold claim at all).

    Just pointing out that the last sentences logic was, to say the least, faulty.

  • Xaroc

    *clap clap* well said my friend

  • Xaroc

    If this battle continues longer. Mr.Ex I will ask that you supply me
    with some popcorn ok? Lol

  • chantellejoy

    If this battle continues longer, I'm going to end up with a reputation for flaming the comments section of this blog 🙁

  • Xaroc

    It's cool man. As long as everyone remembers how to respectfully apply
    their opinions, there should Be no issues. 😉

  • I made no argument; I made an observation. If you think it's irrelevant that the two false statements would benefit the advertiser if they were true, fine. Me, I think it's something any reasonable person would raise an eyebrow at.

  • chantellejoy

    I see your point.

    But insinuating that Mr. X included those statements because of the advertiser, makes it sound like he's not entitled to his own opinion, either.

  • Ex

    I shall!
    I have boxes of popcorn, and drinks, so observer some of the
    more….loud…members of our website.

  • Ex

    Maybe Wickens is sponsored by Microsoft to troll iPhone blogs?

    /conspiracy

  • Xaroc

    Beautiful. I love when a plans comes together

    Sent from my iPad

  • Wouldn't have mattered if this thing could survive an earthquake 🙂 , I was planning to buy a plastic body wrap for my phone after I got it.

  • Always had issues applying things like that… much easier getting it on and off. And my phone hasn't scratched since.

  • Ifokust

    I hope the white is available once the iphone 4 is announced in Canada. I've had a black 3G, then 3GS so it's time for something different. If scratches are less visible on the white, and it doesn't turn yellow over time, wouldn't they be a little more valuable (re-sale)?

  • No matter what device you have, it will scratch. Using a film protector is your choice. Personally, I using an invisibleSHIELD serves two purposes for me: scratch protection and extra grip when holding the phone.

  • Agree–install is gonna be a breeze!

  • Xaroc

    I can't put those things on the save my own life. I always end ip
    getting dust around the middle some how lol.

    Sent from my iPad

  • Zilly

    Ive already ordered my invisible shield, Ill have it WAY before my iPhone LOL

  • Why do they not change the back so… it doesn't scratch? Even with cases or whatever the backs of the iphones scratch. Stop making them shiny damn it! lol I'd be happy with a nice matte paint finish hehe

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  • sridhara

    Why do they not change the back so… it doesn't scratch? Even with cases or whatever the backs of the iphones scratch. Stop making them shiny damn it! lol I'd be happy with a nice matte paint finish hehe
    Flag

  • Xaroc

    Im guessing because when your looking at the floor model the Glass finish has more WOW factor. then a Dull black finish. thats just my guess.

  • Aaronpac

    Well I have the iPhone 4 and I have scratches from , well I don't know I haven't dropped it or put in in a place with keys or anything like that.

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    We are distributors of both wholesales and retails of mobile phones , laptops ipods tv , camera and Pioneer Audio Equipment other merchandised electronics. We sell both locally and internationally.
     
    Apple Iphone 5G 64GB Unlocked …..$700usd
     
    Apple Iphone 5G 32GB Unlocked ……$600usd
     
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    RETURN POLICY: Your satisfaction is our Goal. Please inspect your order upon delivery. If for any reason you are not satisfied with your purchase, please return your merchandise within 30 days for a prompt and courteous exchange or refund, whichever you prefer. Please note: the item returned must be in its original packaging in sealable condition.
           
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  • Nitin Reddy

    The screen protector that can with my wife’s Nokia E72 started peeling away in a little over a month. When it start to peel, it accumulates dust and is just plain annoying that you would pull it off completely. Perhaps I ought to work something out using a combination of Cling film and glue as I can’t seem to find a replacement screen protector for it.

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