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Phones

iPhone X undergoes torture test, shows only one flaw

Commentary: JerryRigEverything does what it can to make Apple's new phone suffer. The gadget mostly does extremely well. But about that glass back...

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


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A vital moment.

JerryRigEverything/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

From creation to destruction there are but tiny steps.

It's a tradition, therefore, to grab a newly created phone and see how quickly you can wreck it

So as soon as the iPhone X emerged on Friday, the scratch-and-burn tester JerryRigEverything decided to see how much torture the $999 phone could take.

He's done it with all the latest phones. Though Samsung's Galaxy Note 8 came through rather well, Google's Pixel 2 buckled under pressure.

But what of the iPhone X? Does it have flaws that will make it a sorry mess within days or weeks?

If you've seen one of these videos before, you'll know that the nastiness has a gradation. 

First, it's scratches. Then it's gouges with a scalpel. Finally comes burning and bending. 

If your phone can survive all that, you might enjoy a lasting relationship.

In this case, the scratch test had the iPhone X on a par with other premium phones. 

The stainless steel sides stood up well to gouging. The burning and bending tests were passed without the phone breaking a sweat -- or, indeed, breaking anything.

This phone seems to be well made. "Incredibly solid" in the JerryRigger's words.

But there was one central problem, which caused him to endure considerable conniptions. 

"This may come as a surprise," he said, "but glass is glass and very susceptible to damage." 

This is especially problematic with the glass back. 

It can crack and, should you not be fond of the pattern the cracks make on the back of the phone, it'll cost you $549 to get that glass back replaced. 

How long will it take before the world is populated by very expensive phones with Jackson Pollock crack-patterns on their backs? 

No, but of course you'll buy a case. And make it look entirely not like an iPhone X at all.

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