News tests from Consumer Reports show that complaints about the bendability of the iPhone 6 Plus were overblown a bit. In fact, the results might surprise those who have been following “Bendgate.”
Consumer Reports put both new iPhones, as well as a number of competing devices, through what it called a “three-point flexural test,” in which the phone is supported at two points on either end, then force is applied at a third point on the top. Consumer Reports confirmed that Apple uses the same three-point flexural test on the same machine, but Apple only applies 55 pounds of force, whereas Consumer Reports used up to 150 pounds.
In the end, pretty much all of the phones tested showed considerable durablity. In Consumer Reports’ testing, the iPhone 6 Plus started to deform at 90 pounds of force, and came apart with 110 pounds of force. With those numbers, it slightly outperformed the HTC One (which is largely regarded as a sturdy, solid phone), as well as the smaller iPhone 6, yet underperformed some other smartphones.
The LG G3 and Samsung Galaxy Note 3 bent, then recovered completely from each step up in force. But at 130 pounds, the case of the G3 fractured. At 150 pounds of force, the Note 3’s screen splintered and it stopped working.
Consumer Reports notes that despite some serious damage from the testing, some of the phones continued to work. Several of the screens illuminated and were functional to the touch.