Black iPhone 5 damage is 'normal' says Apple's Phil Schiller

Scuffing on the £529 black iPhone 5 is to be expected after just a few days, according to the Apple exec.

Luke Westaway Senior editor
Luke Westaway is a senior editor at CNET and writer/ presenter of Adventures in Tech, a thrilling gadget show produced in our London office. Luke's focus is on keeping you in the loop with a mix of video, features, expert opinion and analysis.
Luke Westaway
2 min read

iPhone 5 owners have been complaining that the black version of Apple's new £529+ smart phone is a little too easily defiled, with its sultry slate casing picking up scratches and dents. But Apple's own Phil Schiller has seemingly said the damage is to be expected.

A 9to5Mac reader asked Schiller whether anything was going to be done about the fragile phone, the site reports.

"I love my black and slate iPhone 5," reader Alex wrote, "but I've been seeing some scuffs, scratches and marks throughout the band around the phone along with many others."

"What should we all do?" a concerned Alex enquired, "Any plans to fix this?"

Schiller reportedly replied in an email, "Any aluminium product may scratch or chip with use, exposing its natural silver colour.

"That is normal," the high-level Apple exec signs off.

Schiller's words are cold comfort to iPhone 5 owners who've found their new mobile getting scratched. He's right when he says giving aluminium gadgets a good scratch will result in unsightly marks, but based on this email it doesn't look like Apple has any plans to alter its latest smart phone's casing, or compensate those who feel the black iPhone 5 is unusually delicate.

iFixit, the chaps who recently tore the iPhone 5 apart to examine its insides, have made an adorable scratch-test video that sees a two-year-old doing serious damage to the black iPhone 5 using a set of keys -- it does look like the casing is more vulnerable to scratches than the glass coating on the iPhone 4S.

The iPhone 5 isn't the only smart phone to launch with an apparently delicate disposition -- the black version of the HTC One S found itself in hot water after buyers complained of chipping problems with the phone's casing.

Are Apple fans right to be riled up about damage to new iPhones? Or is wear and tear a natural part of owning a pricey gadget? Tell me in the comments or on our Facebook wall.