We’ve all seen the reports, both in video and print forms. The iPhone 6 $199.00 at Verizonand 6 Plus $299.00 at Verizon are not the sturdiest smartphones out there. Apple says this is not an issue, and that as long as you take care of your phone and don’t do anything crazy to it you won’t have any problems. That sounds almost reasonable, but doesn’t really address anything. We still don’t know what happens when you’ve had this phone for a couple of months, or what the worst case is when you do accidentally apply too much pressure to the handset. Unfortunately, thanks to Phillip Lechter, we have an answer now for the worst case.
If you’ve ever been for a ride in a pedicab or rickshaw, you know that accidents happen. As a passenger, these accidents are largely out of your control. It’s kind of like sitting on a rolling couch that all of a sudden decides to eject you to the harsh ground below, which is usually a road. This doesn’t happen often, especially with skilled drivers, but like all accidents they do occasionally happen. Phillip Lechter was recently involved in such an accident, but instead of being ejected from the couch he was just slammed up against the side of the seat. That’s when his iPhone 6, which was in a leather case, caught fire in his front pocket.
Based on Mr. Lechter’s description of events, the force of his body up against the wall of the petticab bent the iPhone in his pocket in such an extreme fashion that the battery was punctured. Once you’ve punctured a smartphone battery, a fire is just about always what happens next. The fire caused a 11.5 x 10.5cm second-degree burn surrounded by first degree burn areas. It’s not a guarantee that bending your phone will puncture your battery, but for the phone to have bent while inside of Apple’s leather case is significant.
The bottom line seems to be clear. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are fragile, and Apple isn’t going to do anything to fix it. If you want an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, you are going to have to take care of it. It’s not like phones exploding and burning are a new or unique phenomenon, but this generation of iPhones is clearly a little on the fragile side. Whether that means a rugged case or a delicate touch is up to you, but at the end of the day that is the cost of owning one of these devices.