Consumer Reports agrees with Apple: Bendgate is ‘overblown’

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Photo: Martin Hajek/Flickr CC
Suddenly everybody's talking about bendy smartphones. Photo: Martin Hajek/Flickr CC

With Bendgate causing some worrywarts to question the structural integrity of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, Consumer Reports set out to answer the question: “How much force does it take for a phone to bend — and not bend back?”

The independent consumer-testing outfit took six smartphones — including both iPhone 6 models and an iPhone 5s — into the lab and subjected them to experiments using an Instron compression testing machine. The results are surprising.

Here’s what they found (along with a video showing Consumer Reports’ torture testing).

For the testing, Consumer Reports applied weight in 10-pound increments to the three Apple phones and to an LG G3, a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and an HTC One (M8), noting the weights at which the phones bent to the point of formation. Then they pushed the phones even further, measuring the weight at which their cases separated.

The weakest of the bunch was the HTC One (M8), which deformed at 70 pounds (same as the iPhone 6) and separated at 90 pounds (the iPhone 6 held out till 100 pounds).

The larger 6 Plus fared better, deforming at 90 pounds and separating at 110. The LG G3 deformed and separated at 130 pounds, while the iPhone 5s hit 130 and 150. The best overall? The Samsung Galaxy Note 3, which took 150 pounds in each category.

For reference, the testing organization applied similar forces to pencils and a tennis ball — watch the video below to see exactly what that looks like and get a better frame of reference for just how much abuse it takes to bend a smartphone to the point of destruction.

Consumer Reports’ bottom line is this: “While not the strongest phones on the market, fears of a serious structural design flaw in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus seem overblown.” Told ya so.

Source: Consumer Reports