Monday, September 24, 2012

'ScuffGate' or 'ScratchGate,' iPhone 5 buyers react to its new aluminum case

Which is worse? It is an iPhone that can't make a phone call (Antennagate) or an iPhone that folks are suddenly discovering scratches far too easily? We'd vote for the former, because not being able to use the phone as a device is far worse than a scratched iPhone 5, isn't it?

Tell that to the folks who are tweeting complaints with the hashtag #ScratchGate. Instead of the Corning glass material used in the iPhone 4 and 4S, the iPhone 5 has an anodized aluminum backplate. Aluminum, though, is a relatively soft metal. That means that while the iPhone 4 and 4S were magnets for fingerprints, the iPhone 5 attracts scratches and scuffs instead.

As noted on Twitter, "Too bad Steve isn't around to respond to ScratchGate: 'Don't drop it that way.'"

That tweet refers to the famous Steve Jobs email quote, regarding Antennagate, when he replied "Just don't hold it that way." Antennagate was the well-known issue created when an end user held the iPhone 4 in such a way that the gap between the antenna bands on the lower left-hand side of the iPhone was bridged.

Thus "... don't hold it that way."

iFixIt has a slightly different name for the issue. They are calling it "ScuffGate," and "MJ," their (we've said this before) hot blonde representative shows off the reality of "ScuffGate" in the embedded video.

There is one good thing about "ScuffGate," or "ScratchGate" in that Apple already has a fix for it: cases, just as in "AntennaGate." It's unclear if the company will begin giving them away free, as they did in the "Antennagate" saga, but we doubt it, unless complaints begin flooding in.

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