iPhone 5: Say hello to scuffgate?

Some dissatisfied iPhone 5 owners are taking to message boards and social media to complain about finding small nicks, scratches, or scuffs on their new smartphone right out of the box.

Christopher MacManus
Crave contributor Christopher MacManus regularly spends his time exploring the latest in science, gaming, and geek culture -- aiming to provide a fun and informative look at some of the most marvelous subjects from around the world.
Christopher MacManus
2 min read
This image provided to CNET shows a brand new iPhone 5 with a small nick on the side antenna. Several other examples seen on the Web appear worse than this. (Click to enlarge.) Tjuarez2

If you bought Apple's iPhone 5 today and noticed a ding on it, you're not alone.

On message boards and social media, new iPhone 5 owners are complaining of small scratches and nicks on their new smartphones, purportedly located near the antenna markers on the side of the device or near the screen. The issues appear mostly limited to the black version of the iPhone 5. Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

We spotted at least three dozen examples of consumers frustrated with small abrasions discovered after unboxing their shiny new iPhone.

This image from MacRumors forum user MMM.PWR clearly shows a scratch on the bottom corner of a brand new iPhone 5. MMM.PWR

"Mine arrived today with small scratches on the right out of the box. Looks like they chipped the anodized coating putting the screen in, and there is a small mark on the lower back too, by the glass section," said spr97ajm on the MacRumors forums, who also identified himself as Andy. "I'm not going to worry about it, but it shows the coating is soft, and will chip over time."

Here are a couple of examples of people on Twitter complaining about a slightly damaged iPhone 5:

In related news, a rather amusing article from MacRumors displays a picture of the black iPhone 5's rear anodized aluminum ruined with heavy scratches. This damage was apparently intentional: according to the story, someone rubbed keys and a SIM card tray on the back of an in-store iPhone, presumably to see how well it held up. Still, the picture still reminds us of the delicacy of aluminum and the usefulness of a protective case.

Apple's no stranger to early issues with newly released products. Several years ago, users found themselves losing signal by holding their iPhone 4 in a certain way -- an infamous occurrence that became known as as Antennagate. Apple first spun the subject by offering video proof of many smartphones losing signal due to the same issue before finally giving in and offering free bumper cases to all existing owners of the device.

Another production issue arose for the Cupertino, Calif., company when consumers noticed yellowing of the LCD screen on newly released iPhones and iPads.

So what about you? If you bought an iPhone 5 today, did you notice any small scratches or nicks?

Watch this: iPhone 5: Hands-on at CNET