The sight of your iPhone dropping before your eyes can be absolutely horrifying.
Before you even pick it up, you’ll already be picturing in your mind just how damaged it might be.
When there miraculously seems to be zero scratches or signs of physical damage, a sense of relief no doubt washes over you. But, it also makes you wonder out of curiosity:
“How many times can you drop your iPhone?”
According to Corning, the Gorilla Glass 6 of iPhones from 2007 onwards can withstand up to 15 falls before it shatters.
However, newer models like the iPhone 13 and 14 incorporate an even stronger and more advanced glass called the Ceramic Shield – allowing it to quadruple in its durability and withstand up to 60 drops before it fails!
The question remains, however: How does dropping your iPhone affect its internal hardware?
Is It Bad to Drop Your iPhone a Lot?
But also: Generally, no.
Luckily, iPhone users are most likely to drop their phones from a pretty low height. An iPhone that drops from a height of three to six feet will usually not suffer severe damage. However, this also depends on a few important factors.
Additionally, iPhone users surveyed have revealed that they drop their phones three times a year on average.
This means that –at least mathematically speaking – it will take more than five years on average for an iPhone to break solely due to dropping on the ground!
What Happens if You Drop Your iPhone Too Many Times?
In this new era of technology, Apple keeps moving forward in its quest of producing better and better iPhones with higher-quality structural designs. Not only do their smartphones keep getting thinner and smaller – but more durable as well.
However, even the most robust glass screen made by Apple can be damaged!
While a few impacts may not affect its body too significantly, you may begin to see slight cracks or scratches with multiple drops. Of course, there’s the risk of internal damage as well.
If you’re starting to see changes in how your iPhone runs after dropping it a few times (such as a slow response to commands or an increase in lagging), damage may have occurred to the phone’s internal components.
They might have even become loose, colliding and creating system errors as a result!
Frequently dropping your phone may also affect the motherboard, which acts as the communication center for the system of electronic components. Again, this may result in your iPhone becoming slower and taking a longer time to load.
A single drop may not affect anything regarding the camera function. However, the camera lens may get scratched or broken after repeated instances! The camera may also have a problem focusing on its subject – resulting in blurry photos.
On the other hand, frequently dropping shouldn’t affect your iPhone battery’s life or its condition drastically. So, that’s one fortuitous aspect!
If you do think your iPhone system is experiencing issues due to it being dropped, make sure to go to a service center to have it checked out ASAP.
How Many Drops Can an iPhone Resist Before It Breaks?
The number of hits an iPhone can take is different for each phone, depending on several factors.
Some of these are the body finish, durability, the surface on which it drops, and the type of casing.
According to Corning, the Gorilla Glass 6 can withstand up to 15 falls before it shatters.
Apple has been using Gorilla Glass for iPhone since 2007, but it’s hard to tell which version of Gorilla Glass each model uses. However, there is a high probability that more recent models such as iPhone X, iPhone XS, and iPhone 11 use Gorilla Glass 6.
Since the iPhone 12, Apple has collaborated with Corning to invent the Ceramic Shield. The iPhone 13 lineup released in September 2021 also used Ceramic Shield, as does the most recent iPhone 14.
Apple asserted that the Ceramic Shield glass is even more robust than the Gorilla Glass Victus. Apple has even made the claim that this Ceramic Shield is the most powerful smartphone glass ever!
In addition, Corning mentioned that Ceramic Shield has four times the drop protection compared to Gorilla Glass 6. This means that the iPhone may be able to resist up to 60 drops before it breaks.
However, this also depends on the height of the drop.
The iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max drop test done by the Youtuber @EverythingApplePro showed that a much bigger drop rate didn’t affect the phone in a significant way.
Then, they dropped both iPhones from the height of a person talking. The results showed that iPhone 13 Pro Max was still doing fine, while the iPhone 13 Pro’s screen shattered (though it still functioned fine as well).
From a ten-foot height, the iPhone 13 Pro Max was still standing strong with only minor scratches, but the back was severely damaged for the iPhone 13 Pro.
The iPhone 13 Pro Max finally broke after another drop attempt from a ten-foot height with the screen facing down.
The test showed that the height your iPhone drops from plays a significant role in the level of damage incurred. On top of that, where your phone drops also matters a lot!
Dropping your iPhone repeatedly on hard surfaces may cause severe damage in a shorter amount of time. The same rule also applies if you drop your iPhone without a sturdy case attached.
Which iPhone Is Easiest to Break?
SquareTrade, a warranty provider, ranked iPhone X as the most fragile iPhone. They concluded this after conducting a six-foot drop test three times.
The result showed that the iPhone X came out shattered, the display malfunctioned, and touch ID and swipe gestures were not accessible.
On top of that, a study by pCloud indicated iPhone X as the most searched keyword in relation to water damage!
Despite being water-resistant, there is an absolute limit to its effectiveness, and dropping an iPhone X into the water may cause it to stop working more often than not.
In addition, iPhone 7 was the most searched term in relation to the ‘How to fix damaged phone’ keyword.
The iPhone 7 was a model released in 2016 which was designed with a 4.7- inch glass front screen and aluminum back. Apple did not reveal outright which type of glass they used; however, it was most likely the Gorilla Glass 5.
Again, YouTuber EverythingApplePro conducted a drop test on the iPhone 7, and it featured multiple drops from different heights and angles.
Surprisingly, the iPhone 7 remained whole with only minor scratches on the body and camera lens even after being dropped from a ten-foot height!
Apart from this, the study by pCloud also presented the iPhone 11 as the most searched phone related to the keyword ‘screen cracks’.
Even so, a drop test for iPhone 11 showed otherwise. The trial found that an iPhone 11 can handle a drop pretty well. There were no cracks and only minor screen discoloration – even after an eleven feet height fall.
Unfortunately, the rear camera did start to malfunction, and it remained a black screen even after restarting the phone.
Moreover, the test also showed that dropping an iPhone 11 three times from different lower heights (three feet, six feet, and eight feet) did not affect the screen structure.
Instead, there was only a scratch on the lens housing and a minor fracture on the aluminum frame. This is why we personally believe that the iPhone 11 is actually one of the more durable iPhones.
How to Avoid Dropping Your iPhone
As an iPhone owner, we’re sure that you want to protect your iPhone from dropping, no matter what!
To avoid dropping your iPhone, we’ve shared a few tips so that your iPhone keeps its functionality for as long as possible:
- Use an iPhone Case
There are near-infinite options when it comes to the iPhone cases you can choose from, either officially from the Apple store or from third-party sellers.
If possible, go for a case that has a rougher texture to it (rather than smooth) for a firmer grip. Otherwise, look into a folded case!
The folded design is particularly popular among users that are prone to dropping their phones a lot as it can protect both the front and back of the device.
In addition, if you don’t mind a slight bulge on the back of your iPhone, consider using a phone ring for your finger. The phone ring helps to further secure your phone when typing or scrolling.
- Put Your iPhone on a Suitable Surface
It’s vital to be constantly alert as to where you put your iPhone. Make sure to put your iPhone on a solid, flat surface and the center of a table or shelf (not on the edge) whenever possible.
For example, if you want to charge your iPhone, put it on a flat surface at a low height and make sure to keep the charging cable neatly folded! This will prevent you from tripping on the cable and jerking your iPhone onto the ground.
- Use Clean Hands to Handle Your iPhone
Try your best to avoid using oily or dirty hands when handling your iPhone.
Oily hands can both dirty the iPhone’s surface as well as increase the risks of slipping and dropping the phone onto the floor.
It’s also an excellent idea to wipe your iPhone with a clean cloth regularly to prevent it from being slippery to hold!
Additionally, make sure you do not use your iPhone when your hands are wet as this will prevent you from being able to grip it properly.
An iPhone can generally resist falling up to fifteen times before it stops working. However, as discussed in this article, there are plenty of factors that need to be considered!
Different iPhone models have different durability; therefore, the drop resistance will vary as well.
Additionally, you’ll need to consider the height of the drop, the type of surface that the iPhone drops on, and the drop angles.
A repeated drop of an iPhone from a significant height at a side angle onto a hard surface like cement will likely cause the most damage.
When you drop your iPhone, there may be potential physical and internal damage incurred. Look for damage such as screen cracks, scratches, camera malfunction, and even system malfunction due to the deterioration of internal components.
The most breakable iPhone, according to actual tests, is the iPhone X. Even if studies and testimonials suggest iPhone 7 and iPhone 11 are easily damaged, field tests have shown otherwise.
While dropping an iPhone is a rare occurrence (hopefully), you still want to avoid the possibility as much as possible!
Make sure to purchase a high-quality, sturdy case, and keep your iPhone clean so that it’s less likely to slip out of your hands. After all, you don’t want to do a drop test with your own iPhone, do you?