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Some users find scuffs, nicks on newly-purchased iPhone 5s [u]

post #1 of 265
Thread Starter 
An increasing number of iPhone 5 owners are reporting scuffs and other signs of damage to their newly-purchased smartphones right out of the box, with some miffed customers taking to the web in what is being dubbed "scuffgate."

Update: iFixit has posted a video testing the "scuffability" of the black and slate iPhone 5 versus the last generation iPhone 4S. The test does not reflect normal day use, however it does appear that Apple's newest device is more easily damaged by other metal objects. Video embedded below.

Scuffgate
Source: @Stormsein via Twitter


According to complaints posted to various forums and social media sites, a limited number of launch-day iPhone 5 units are being delivered straight from the factory with scuffs and dings.

While the exact percentage of affected iPhones is unknown, the issue appears to be significant enough to warrant its own hashtag on Twitter. The tongue-in-cheek "#Scuffgate" is a callback to the iPhone 4's "antennagate" controversy which saw the then-new handset ship with an antenna design flaw that affected cellular performance.

Scuffgate
Source: @rollermog via Twitter


Most of the reports are coming from users who bought the black and slate iPhone 5, which some claim is due to the anodizing process that colors the handset's aluminum backplate. The speculation may be unfounded, however, as a number of white and silver units have also been affected. A more likely explanation is that both versions are affected equally, but the damage is more noticeable on the black and slate model as the scratches reveal the underlying silver-colored "raw" aluminum, a stark contrast to the anodized outer layer.

The cause of the damage is unknown, however similar reports of dings and scratches surfaced when the new iPad was released in March, possibly hinting at a manufacturing process flaw.

post #2 of 265
Nothing a little bondo cant fix.

One thought he was invincible... the other thought he could fly.

They were both wrong.

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One thought he was invincible... the other thought he could fly.

They were both wrong.

Reply
post #3 of 265

Yep. Knew it. Mapgate, Scuffgate, Tubegate, Sizegate, Portgate, Thingate. Apple is doomedgate.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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post #4 of 265

Happy to hear I'm not the only one.  I have the smallest little "nick" from what looks like the last touch of the diamond tipped drill on one of the beveled edges.

 

I have already sent Tim Cook an email regarding it. 

 

It has been my experience, that any comment sent directly to Tim is sent to his group and someone has always contacted me within 24-48 hours.

 

Eric H.

post #5 of 265
Why does it seem like Apple can't release anything anymore without something being wrong with it? What happened to quality control?
post #6 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Yep. Knew it. Mapgate, Scuffgate, Tubegate, Sizegate, Portgate, Thingate. Apple is doomedgate.

So true, but lets not forget Successgate and Megabilliongate continues on unabated!
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
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From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
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post #7 of 265
Screwed by the Chinese workers!
post #8 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Hofstetter View Post

Happy to hear I'm not the only one.  I have the smallest little "nick" from what looks like the last touch of the diamond tipped drill on one of the beveled edges.

I have already sent Tim Cook an email regarding it. 

It has been my experience, that any comment sent directly to Tim is sent to his group and someone has always contacted me within 24-48 hours.

Eric H.

Well you should have kept quiet about that then shouldn't you ... /wink
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
Reply
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
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post #9 of 265
Same problem here iPhone 5 16gb att.
post #10 of 265

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Hofstetter View Post

It has been my experience, that any comment sent directly to Tim is sent to his group and someone has always contacted me within 24-48 hours.

 

Apple runs a customer support department for a reason. There is no reason to bother the CEO unless there is a serious problem. Your request is most likely just being transfered to the correct department.

Andrew
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Andrew
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post #11 of 265

One drop in a jean's pocket with coins/keys or a woman's purse and you'll get the exact same thing!  I can understand one paying a pretty penny for a nice phone, but come on people!  Why do people expect absolute perfection?  It doesn't exist in nature, yet you demand that in a mass-produced product?

Bring your "perfect" product after using it in a week and lets compare.

Jeez, I can understand an obvious flaw, damage, etc... but the kind of "scuffs" seen in this picture is borderline drama-queen.

 

post #12 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Hofstetter View Post

Happy to hear I'm not the only one.  I have the smallest little "nick" from what looks like the last touch of the diamond tipped drill on one of the beveled edges.

 

I have already sent Tim Cook an email regarding it. 

 

It has been my experience, that any comment sent directly to Tim is sent to his group and someone has always contacted me within 24-48 hours.

 

Eric H.


Isnt that a bit much? You'll get a quicker response if you stick to calling AppleCare. They are immediate - and in most cases can schedule you a genius appointment for the same day. I dunno... Tim's just a busy person I don't think we need to post every scuff and scratch to him... AppleCare is where they will start seeing the responses come in and immediately come to fruition with a plan of action if its a pandemic.

I only email Tim when I feel a pat on the back is warranted, or a major fubar must me mentioned (like the discontinuation of a product that affect my life... hehe  ;)).  Maybe I'm wrong... but... I think you'll get better results with the channels they have setup for this kind of stuff.

post #13 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Yep. Knew it. Mapgate, Scuffgate, Tubegate, Sizegate, Portgate, Thingate. Apple is doomedgate.

One more for the last and only gate.  Apple Gate.

An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #14 of 265

Yep, wrote to Tim last night. He got right back to me. Extremely apologetic. Nice dealing with a small company.
 

post #15 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waverunnr View Post

Why does it seem like Apple can't release anything anymore without something being wrong with it? What happened to quality control?

 

Because Apple is under a microscope, because Apple users tend to be irrational OCD freaks. Every other product released by every other manufacturer, including Tiffany, Rolex, BMW, Ford, Chevy, Walmart, et al have similar flaws and blemishes. There is no such thing as a perfect product. Things happen and things get replaced or fixed. But because it's Apple it becomes a "gate".

 

Your whining lament proves the point perfectly.

post #16 of 265

First of all any blackened aluminum wether it be anodized or painted is gonna show the scuff marks way more than the iPhone 4s or previous generation.  Let me see a video of it being unpacked from a shrink wrapped box and then being inspected for scuff marks then I will believe it.  Other wise its user error.

An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #17 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

One drop in a jean's pocket with coins/keys or a woman's purse and you'll get the exact same thing!  I can understand one paying a pretty penny for a nice phone, but come on people!  Why do people expect absolute perfection?  It doesn't exist in nature, yet you demand that in a mass-produced product?

Bring your "perfect" product after using it in a week and lets compare.

Jeez, I can understand an obvious flaw, damage, etc... but the kind of "scuffs" seen in this picture is borderline drama-queen.

 


Hear! Hear!

post #18 of 265

I think it's important to keep some perspective here.... assuming an initial batch of around 2,000,000 phones produced even if 10,000 exhibit this problem that is still only 0.5%.... when dealing with production on this scale there are bound to be some teething issues that fall through the cracks. How many S3s get shipped with faults and returned but without all the media hoopla?

post #19 of 265
Personally, with the example photo given, I'd just touch that up with a tiny dot from a sharpie and call it good. It even looks like the photo was shot with a macro lens setting. If it has to be perfect, by all means, return it, but phones are heavy use items, that's probably the least you'll notice by the time you retire the device.

While we're at it, lay a strand of hair next to the "scuff" if you take such a photo. I have a suspicion that the hair width is similar in size to that flaw.

I suspect this wouldn't have been a problem if Apple didn't advertise the case is made within microns of repeatability.
Edited by JeffDM - 9/21/12 at 3:48pm
post #20 of 265

Put it into gel skin and chill.

post #21 of 265
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post
So true, but lets not forget Successgate and Megabilliongate continues on unabated!

 

That's all because of extortionatepricesgate.


Originally Posted by Rodent View Post
Screwed by the Chinese workers!

 

Ah, Chinagate, thanks. There are a bunch of subgates for that.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply
post #22 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waverunnr View Post

Why does it seem like Apple can't release anything anymore without something being wrong with it? What happened to quality control?

 

Because 0.01% of 10 million is still 1,000. 

 

"Seems" is the correct word here.  

post #23 of 265

Really aI think the iPhone 4s design was very effective and cool.  Black on aluminum is not good.  It will show wear more than the original 4s.  At least the 4 and 4s were not painted or anodized a different color then the original aluminum.  Also the back of the 4s was glass.  Im my opinion glass was way more durable for wear than the painted or anodized color.  It takes more electrical energy to make aluminum than it does glass.  Glass is way more eco friendly than aluminum.  Only time glass is not eco Fridley is when it is coated with a material that makes it tossable only and cant be melted down for reuse.

An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #24 of 265
I hear that a black magic marker will cover up that nick in no time at all. Are these people sure they didn't nick it themselves due to opening the box in a hurry? Apple's policy is if damage doesn't hurt the performance of the device, you're flat out of luck for free repairs.
post #25 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

That's all because of extortionatepricesgate.

 

Ah, Chinagate, thanks. There are a bunch of subgates for that.

 

And let's not forget "sell-out-gate" described by the Macalope over at MacWorld. Apple is being accused by the jerk punditry crowd of intentionally faking the availability of the iPhone 5 to generate marketing hype. So, in other words, Apple would rather withhold the most popular product on the face of the planet than actually sell as many as they can make. Pure evil genius according to these twits.

post #26 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

One more for the last and only gate.  Apple Gate.

 

I kind of like Applegate tho. 

 

post #27 of 265
Translation: Weapons of the Weak.
post #28 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

Really aI think the iPhone 4s design was very effective and cool.  Black on aluminum is not good.  It will show wear more than the original 4s.  At least the 4 and 4s were not painted or anodized a different color then the original aluminum.  Also the back of the 4s was glass.  Im my opinion glass was way more durable for wear than the painted or anodized color.  It takes more electrical energy to make aluminum than it does glass.  Glass is way more eco friendly than aluminum.  Only time glass is not eco Fridley is when it is coated with a material that makes it tossable only and cant be melted down for reuse.

So damned if they do and damned of they don't. Such are the travails of the most valuable company in the world. Nobody is happy. Everybody is mad. Apple is doomed.

post #29 of 265

scuffgate?
Don't you have the right to return the product (within x days) and buy another one that you ask to check in the store before the purchase?
(I know it's inconvenient, I remember the last time, funny that it was a Samsung monitor I had to return because of scratches on the border.

Antennagate was different, you couldn't see the issue right out of the box. And before that phone, nobody had known that most other phones have had quite similar weaknesses.

This case must be below the margin of error, tech journalist should moderate themselves.

post #30 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post

I hear that a black magic marker will cover up that nick in no time at all. Are these people sure they didn't nick it themselves due to opening the box in a hurry? Apple's policy is if damage doesn't hurt the performance of the device, you're flat out of luck for free repairs.

 

People should also realise that if you take it back to the store, even if they give you a "new" one it's actually a refurbished product (the first week of sales might be the only exception to that). So if you bought your iPhone unlocked at full price you might want to just deal with it instead of trying to take it back.  

post #31 of 265

A simple solution:

 

post #32 of 265
Jeez, those are tiny. Do people examine their phones under a loupe? Besides, that's what happens with anodized aluminum. The finish gets fairly easily scratched and shows the aluminum underneath. They'll look 10x worst after a week of use unless you put a case or zaggs-like protector on it. People bitching about maps I can kinda understand. Creating a hashtag for this? Yea, that's too much.
post #33 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post

Are these people sure they didn't nick it themselves due to opening the box in a hurry?

you mean that way in this video?


post #34 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

 

I kind of like Applegate tho. 

 

When I scrolled down and saw this I immediately had a craving for a milk shake and the strong desire to do something selfish.  MOMMY?

An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #35 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Yep. Knew it. Mapgate, Scuffgate, Tubegate, Sizegate, Portgate, Thingate. Apple is doomedgate.

Browettgate

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #36 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

So damned if they do and damned of they don't. Such are the travails of the most valuable company in the world. Nobody is happy. Everybody is mad. Apple is doomed.

No it just makes sense.  When you have a metallic based device that is put into pockets with keys change and so on you will eventually see more damage or wear if that metal is painted or anodized.  It would have made more sense to not go with a black painted or anodized body on a phone that has a higher value.  I am not saying that Apple was wrong for their design.  I like the look and design.  I am just saying that in the long run the wear is gonna show more on a painted metallic smart phone than an actual anodized aluminum one with a glass back.  I personally would like to have an iPhone 5 knowing that it will show wear allot more than my 4s.

An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #37 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

It takes more electrical energy to make aluminum than it does glass.  Glass is way more eco friendly than aluminum.  Only time glass is not eco Fridley is when it is coated with a material that makes it tossable only and cant be melted down for reuse.

Does the production of glass require the use of electrical energy?

The heat of fusion of silicon is about 5x that of aluminum, how does it take more electricity to make aluminum than glass?
post #38 of 265
Originally Posted by msalganik View Post
They'll look 10x worst after a week of use unless you put a case or zaggs-like protector on it. People bitching about maps I can kinda understand. Creating a hashtag for this? Yea, that's too much.

 

Wait, what? That sounds backward. Maps will not only be "fixed", they'll surpass Google's efforts tenfold. This is damage. But I don't know HOW, since anodized aluminum's what my Mac Pro's of, and it's like the day out of the box.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply
post #39 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

One drop in a jean's pocket with coins/keys or a woman's purse and you'll get the exact same thing!  I can understand one paying a pretty penny for a nice phone, but come on people!  Why do people expect absolute perfection?  It doesn't exist in nature, yet you demand that in a mass-produced product?


Bring your "perfect" product after using it in a week and lets compare.


Jeez, I can understand an obvious flaw, damage, etc... but the kind of "scuffs" seen in this picture is borderline drama-queen.


 

Before jumping on the apple consumer, majority flaws are seen out the box and not after 'wear and tear' as you have expressed. Apple followers expect near prefect, it is the standard that Steve, Tim and Apple employees have set to ensure superior quality and innovation.

Do not call us drama-queens, because Steve would have apologised, If he felt the quality is not near prefect.

I do agree the flaws are low in numbers, but you can not tell me as Apple fan, you wouldn't be little upset to see your new iPhone is less than prefect. You have every right too has a individual.

That's why we have return/replacemenr policies, second to no other company.
post #40 of 265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Hofstetter View Post

Happy to hear I'm not the only one.  I have the smallest little "nick" from what looks like the last touch of the diamond tipped drill on one of the beveled edges.

I have already sent Tim Cook an email regarding it. 

It has been my experience, that any comment sent directly to Tim is sent to his group and someone has always contacted me within 24-48 hours.

Eric H.

So you've complained to Tim Cook multiple times? Nothing like being OCD and demanding.

I can understand having something happen once that needs to be brought to Cook's attention, but if you've complained several times, you're being fanatical about silly things.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

That's all because of extortionatepricesgate.

The only problem with that is that Apple's products are, by and large, very competitively priced with comparable items.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Does the production of glass require the use of electrical energy?
The heat of fusion of silicon is about 5x that of aluminum, how does it take more electricity to make aluminum than glass?

You're not looking at the whole process.

First, glass isn't made of silicon, it's made of silicon dioxide with other components. That aside, in making glass, you're essentially digging sand out of the ground, blending it with other chemicals that you dug out of the ground, and then melting it. Most of the energy is in melting the materials.

For aluminum, OTOH, you're digging aluminum out of the ground as bauxite (a complicated aluminum oxide compound). You have to chemically break those aluminum/oxygen bonds - and breaking bonds takes a lot more energy than simply melting something.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
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