Class Action Lawsuit Claims iPhone 4 Glass is Flawed

| iPhone

A class action lawsuit filed this week claims that a design flaw in the glass used in the iPhone 4 leads to it easily breaking under “normal use.” Donald LeBuhn said that his daughter dropped his iPhone 4 from about three feet off the ground, causing the glass to crack. He added that his previous iPhone, the 3GS model, never suffered such damage when dropped from similar heights.

LA Weekly noted that warranty provider SquareTrade took a look at 20,000 iPhone accidents last fall and found that accident rates and incidents of broken screens for the iPhone 4 were higher — 68% and 82%, respectively — than for the 3GS.

Mr. LeBuhn’s lawsuit opens with several marketing statements Apple has made about the iPhone 4’s glass screen — “20 times stiffer and 30 times harder than plastic,” “ultradurable” and “glass used in helicopters and high-speed trains” — and then goes on to say: “Months after selling millions of iPhone 4s, Apple has failed to warn and continues to sell this product with no warning to customers that the glass housing is defective.”

The lawsuit asks Apple to refund the iPhone 4 purchase price to all consumers covered by it, to reimburse them for repair costs, and to make good on “their overpayment in purchasing defective iPhone 4s.”

Comments

b9bot

It’s glass dope! Glass is breakable and Apple doesn’t advertise anything about it not being breakable. Your lawsuit is stupid and you will lose!!!!!
Grow up!!!!

ilikeimac

This is clearly a stupid lawsuit and I hope this idiot gets laughed out of the courtroom.

That said, my iPhone 3GS has been very good to me and I am impressed that it still works so well given all the times I’ve dropped it. The SquareTrade numbers make me a little happier that I held off on grabbing an iPhone 4, seeing as I don’t use a phone case and seem prone to frequently drop my phone. Perhaps when I get an iPhone 5 this summer I’ll consider an extended warranty.

Tiger

Hmm. A wikipedia entry alone trumps his lawsuit.

Glass is an amorphous (non-crystalline) solid material. Glasses are typically brittle, and often optically transparent.

mhikl

Donald LeBuhn should sue his daughter. She dropped it.

I am an accident waiting to happen, suffering from hurryitis. I have stepped on two electronic devices causing grave concern to the glass. I should be a candidate for dropping things, but I haven’t yet (knock on wood). I suspect a lot of dropped items were stepped on. But either way, b9bot is right. It’s glass. And listen to Tiger, do your research?start with Wikipedia. “LeBuhn, get a new daughter & buy insurance.”

Lee Dronick

“SquareTrade took a look at 20,000 iPhone accidents last fall and found that accident rates and incidents of broken screens for the iPhone 4 were higher ? 68% and 82%, respectively ? than for the 3GS.”

Comparing percentages are one thing, comparing the actual number of incidents are another. How many iPhone 3G3 screens broke and how many Iphone 4 screens broke?

I would think that the “highly respected” Consumer’s Reports would have tested the glass on the iPhone 4. If they have done so is there a report?

Lee Dronick

I just found this over at Mashable

“Here?s the real world translation: In its sample groups of about 20,000 iPhone owners, SquareTrade actually found that 3.9% of iPhone 4s suffered broken glass in the first four months, in contrast to 2.1% with the iPhone 3GS. Sounds a lot less dramatic doesn?t it?”

mhikl

Sir Harry, unless I am reading your stats incorrectly, the 4s are nearly twice as accident prone. Wonder how much a silicone or rubber skin would affect the stats on breakage?

geoduck

In its sample groups of about 20,000 iPhone owners, SquareTrade actually found that 3.9% of iPhone 4s suffered broken glass in the first four months, in contrast to 2.1% with the iPhone 3GS. Sounds a lot less dramatic doesn?t it??

It’s my understanding that this refers to all incidents of “broken glass”. The iP4 has twice as much glass as the iP3/3GS, front and back. If it was the same fragility as the earlier model it would have twice the rate (4.2%)  of the iP3, but it doesn’t therefore the glass is already better.

And as mentioned before Apple never said anything about unbreakable.

ilikeimac

The iP4 has twice as much glass as the iP3/3GS, front and back.

Good point; and if the back piece of glass breaks you have the option of a DIY repair with fashionable custom backplates. For example: http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2010/10/sleek-metal-cover-replaces-glass-iphone-4-backplate/

RonMacGuy

Another factor that they neglect to mention is that the iPhone 4 is thinner (depth), less wide, and squarer than the 3GS.  So, those who are used to an iPhone 3GS who then upgrade to an iPhone 4 are probably more susceptible to dropping it given that it is not as wide (used to gripping something wider would probably have people picking the 4 up with less force) as well as thinner and less rounded (harder to get a better grip on the phone). Just my opinion…

dehoopta

This says it all, “.....3GS model, never suffered such damage when dropped from similar heights.”  The guy is obviously a klutz who needs to be hoisting around a circa 1993 “cellular phone”.  Any dick who calls a “glass” housing that breaks defective should be laughed out of court.  Any lawyer who took the case (because Apple has really deep pockets), should be sued for malpractice.  This is the state of our “not my responsibility” culture.

trrll

I’ve seen a 3gs screen shatter from a 3 foot drop. Breaking of glass can be very unpredictable, and depends upon exactly how it hits. I once had a glass bowl fall onto the floor from about 3 feet, bounce intact about 3”, and then shatter the second time it hit the floor.

jameskatt

Some lawyers need to die.  As they way, the best place for a lawyer is with the other sharks at the bottom of the ocean.

Lee Dronick

Some lawyers need to die.? As they way, the best place for a lawyer is with the other sharks at the bottom of the ocean.

As with any profession there are good ones and bad ones.

Brutno

Ok, no one has said it, so I’ll volunteer:
Is this a “glass-action” lawsuit?

Lee Dronick

Is this a ?glass-action? lawsuit?

Good one! We need a rimshot emoticon smile

geoduck

Coincidentally someone brought in a company laptop a little while ago. The screen was cracked, my guess it got stepped on (though I’m getting the normal “it looked like that when I opened it” excuse).

Should I be looking at filing a suit against Lenovo?

Lee Dronick

Coincidentally someone brought in a company laptop a little while ago. The screen was cracked, my guess it got stepped on (though I?m getting the normal ?it looked like that when I opened it? excuse).

Should I be looking at filing a suit against Lenovo?

If 80% of all iPhone 4 had glass that cracked easily then there should be a lawsuit. If only 3.9 of the iPhones have screens that crack when dropped from 3 feet is that a problem? Where is Mr. LeBuhn’s iPhone, has been examined by a forensic tech to see of the broken glass pattern is from being dropped or from being thrown down. A lot of unanswered questions.

dehoopta

I say, give him his money back and then give him commit to only using this and drive a Yugo.

http://www.johnsphones.com/

Maclaren

Ridiculous.  I hope Apple will decide to fight this frivolous lawsuit!  Apple: don’t settle, grind the plaintiff(s) and his lawyer(s) into the ground!

RobWoof

Good one! We need a rimshot emoticon

Try instantrimshot.com.

Lee Dronick

Try instantrimshot.com.

I could see the button/drum depress, but couldn’t hear any sound. Yes, I have the speaker volume up. It also didn’t work on my iMac.

Perhaps coding it in HTML5 would do the trick

The Mouse That Roared

Let’s play a silly game - see how far we have to drop an iPhone before the glass breaks

You have five choices:
on its end
on its side
on its front
on its back
on any of the four corners

trrll

Class action suits over electronic equipment are basically a lawyer scam. The lawyer doesn’t care whether the suit actually has any merit. It just has to be good enough to create some bad publicity so the company will want to settle rather than drag it out. The lawyer will be very cooperative, agreeing to settle for pennies on the dollar of his original complaint, so that it is cheaper for the company to settle than to defend the suit in court. The customers will end up getting something like a five dollar gift certificate that isn’t even decent compensation for the time they spent filling out the forms. But the lawyer gets a percentage of all of those little settlements, so he gets to go home with a bag full of money for minimal effort.

Chance1972

Your all 100% right! Apple rules and should not be critized (even if you have to have a mod to get reception with your phones). Go Apple! Pay for all of your apps and music. I feel really bad for the droid users that get everything for free…What were they thinking? The good news? When my droid breaks I take it to best buy..For $9 dollars a month they fix everything. When I took my old 3gs to apple the charge was 200$ for a new screen…Apple is a fucking joke. I hope they lose their a$$ in the lawsuit.

RonMacGuy

Chance1972 is a whiny baby.  Hey, why don’t you try actually holding onto your phones without dropping them?  Then they don’t break.  Oh, by the way, they do have insurance on iPhones too if you want to pay for it.  Or, you can buy a case that protects it.  Oh, and Apple won’t lose this lawsuit, moron.  It won’t even get to court.  Judge will throw it out if they haven’t already.  So keep on whining while we all laugh at you.

trrll

Class action lawsuits for consumer products are a lawyer scam. Invariably, the lawyer offers to settle for pennies on the dollar. The company is willing to settle even if the suit is nonsense, because it would cost them more to go to court even if they won. The suckers…er…“class members” get a gift certificate for a few bucks—hardly enough to compensate them for the time they spent filling out the legal paperwork. The lawyer, on the other hand, gets a fraction of all of those tiny settlements, which adds up to a tidy sum—and all without going to court or doing any real work.

Lee Dronick

If this was a serious problem, a common occurrence, then a class action suit is appropriate. There probably hasn’t been more than a few cases of broken glass on iPhone 4s during “normal usage”, there may not have been any. How many of these phones are out there, if this was a real problem then we would have had a lot more reports of breakage.

Log-in to comment