iPhone 12 drop test: Ceramic Shield is durable, but not indestructible

Protection plans like AppleCare+ can minimize the out-of-pocket cost associated with repairs. Smartphone cases are also a popular choice for added protection but above all else, simply being cognizant of the fact that you’re handing an expensive gadget and treating it as such can avoid many accidents altogether.
Apple’s iPhone 12 launch weekend is officially in the history books. As is par for the course, we’re now starting to see teardowns videos and durability tests hit the Internet. This year’s batch of torture testing is particularly interesting as Apple’s latest iPhones feature a new design and a new Ceramic Shield front cover that is said to increase drop performance by 4x.

The drop tests highlighted here were conducted by Allstate Protection Plans (Allstate now owns SquareTrade). In the first test, a face-down drop from a height of six feet, the iPhone 12 suffered small cracks to the front screen as well as scuffed corners and edges. The iPhone 12 Pro, meanwhile, ended up with major cracks and raised glass on the front surface.

The back-down drop test on the iPhone 12 left the phone with scuffed corners and edges and some sharp metal but no cracked or broken glass. Again, the iPhone 12 Pro wasn’t so lucky, as the entire rear glass panel was shattered, creating raised and loose glass. One of the camera lenses also cracked.

Neither model sustained significant glass damage when dropped on their side from the same height.

Allstate Protection Plans concluded that Ceramic Shield is a leap forward for durability, though it isn’t indestructible. Given the cost of repairs, owners should treat this new generation of devices with the same care they would an expensive camera, the publication adds.