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A quarter of iPhones fail within two years

by Sarah Griffiths on 24 June 2010, 09:42

Tags: Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)

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Failing less

Just over one in four iPhones break within two years, but Apple has improved the reliability of its mobile megastar, according to SquareTrade.

The  after-sales warranties company, which examines more than 25,000 customer claims, says although 26 percent of Apple's smartphones suffer breakdowns or fail by their second birthday, the iPhone 3GS is sturdier and more reliable than its predecessors.

SquareTrade's report last year found almost a third of all iPhones broke within 24 months of ownership.  Consequently, claims filed by iPhone owners whose mobiles suffered hardware failures or accidents, dropped from 2009 levels.

In 2009, 21 percent of iPhone owners and SquareTrade customers reported an accidental damage claim in the first 24 months of ownership, compared with 18.1 percent before June 2010.  Similarly, fewer people made a hardware failure claim in the same time frame, falling from 10 percent in 2009 to 7.5 percent in June 2010.

SquareTrade believes the drop in warranty claims is due to the improvement in the iPhone 3GS' touch screen, which is tougher and designed to withstand a higher degree of shock if knocked or dropped.  According to their data, the number of reported iPhone 3GS touchscreen failures is less than half of those suffered by owners of the older 3G model.  Yet, 3GS owners have reported 50 percent more power issues than their 3G owning peers.

The warranty firm predicts the iPhone 4 will be even more reliable than its predecessors, but is concerned about the new model's glass back and recommends proud new owners invest in a sturdy cover, case or skin, especially as drops and cracked screen currently account for over three quarters of accidents it handles.

Soon-to-be new owners of the coveted handset may also be reassured by findings of the SquareTrade report that loss and theft of iPhones is a minor problem compared to accidents and normal use failures.

Detailed findings of the report can be downloaded here.


HEXUS Forums :: 30 Comments

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But wait I thought iPhone's “just work” because they are made by Apple? Are you trying to tell me this isn't the case? *shock horror*
I have a 3G here - misbehaving. That said, does it matter that much? Most people will get another one between 18-24 months anyway..
But wait I thought iPhone's “just work” because they are made by Apple? Are you trying to tell me this isn't the case? *shock horror*

There might be an apple on the front and it might have an apple design however its clearly made in a Chinese slave labour camp called “foxconn”, so I would not workers to care to much about getting things perfect. Components are made by the cheapest bidder as well. It even has a non user replaceable battery Who has had a rechargeable battery last longer than 2 years and work as well as it did when new. The iphone to me is a phone designed with a short lifetime, after all that is in apple's best interest.
i'm surprised someone has had an iphone for longer than 12 months. 97% of users upgrade to the next model each year and look forward to waiting all night in line to do so. that means 3% of iphone users are sad untrendy losers with no friends and an ancient scabby phone
Don't apple do a swapout scheme with them - even for ones out of warranty?

If so I don't think anyone is majorly fussed by the idea that they fail, because apple's support is there when it happens. If my SE Xperia X1 was to fail, I'd need to send it away for repair….and that wasn't a cheap phone either?