New in OS X: Get MacRumors Push Notifications on your Mac

Resubscribe Now Close

Apple Watch Sport's Ion-X Glass Display Cover Subjected to Scratch Test in New Video

Earlier this month, a video surfaced showing the incredible scratch resistance of the sapphire crystal display cover used in the stainless steel and Edition Apple Watches, and now another video claims to show the scratch resistance of the Ion-X glass display cover used in the Apple Watch Sport.

The video, from Lewis Hilsenteger of Unbox Therapy, uses Ion-X glass covers sourced from Sonny Dickson, who has acquired parts from various pre-release devices in the past. The glass covers in the video are said to be the same Ion-X covers used in the Apple Watch Sport.

Hilsenteger subjects the Ion-X glass to a key, a knife, steel wool, and several different sandpapers to try to damage it (skip to 2:30 to get to the scratch testing portion of the video).


While a key, a knife, and steel wool don't do any damage to the glass, Hilsenteger is able to scratch the glass quite significantly with sandpaper, suggesting that while it will stand up to day to day wear and tear, it's still possible to scratch the Ion-X glass under extreme conditions.

When the sapphire display cover of the more expensive watches is subjected to sandpaper, as in the video we saw earlier this month, it does not scratch due to the sapphire's greater hardness. Sapphire's scratch resistance is why it's used by many high-end watch manufacturers to protect watch faces as it's second only to diamond when it comes to scratch resistance on the Mohs scale.

Sapphire display covers are only offered in the higher-end Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition models, presumably due to the high price of sapphire. The Apple Watch Sport, Apple's most affordable watch, has a lower price tag in part because it uses less expensive materials -- Ion-X glass instead of sapphire crystal and aluminum instead of stainless steel or gold.

The Apple Watch sport is priced more affordably than the other available Apple Watches, starting at a price of $349 compared to the $549 entry-level stainless steel watch and the $10,000 entry-level Edition watch.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 2, watchOS 3
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)


Top Rated Comments

(View all)

18 months ago
Sandpapergate.
Rating: 36 Votes
18 months ago
Cap kid calls this "steel wool" in his video - any idiot can see IT IS NOT, that is a plastic based abrasive pad. What a pleb. Look at how the strands are formed - THAT IS NOT STEEL WOOL.

Doh >_<
Rating: 32 Votes
18 months ago
The same douchebag that tried to make bank riding the "bendgate" wave?
Rating: 28 Votes
18 months ago

ok how is this at all bad?????? scraping sandpaper on your watch is akin to running your watch through on a concrete floor
not a common scenario at all.


Um, I've bashed my watch against concrete walls/pillars by mistake when I've brushed against them in garages etc. So yeah, actually it can be a common scenario.

I'm glad I ordered the SS model.
Rating: 27 Votes
18 months ago
Isn't this the same douchebag who made that viral phone-bending video?
Rating: 27 Votes
18 months ago
It makes me unreasonably angry that the guy placed his YouTube link right overtop of the area where you dismiss ads.
Rating: 26 Votes
18 months ago

Yep, the only thing he's interested in is ad revenue.


like macrumors too
Rating: 24 Votes
18 months ago
This isn't good!


Just kidding.... All you sport soon to be owners will be fine. Take this with a grain of salt.
Rating: 20 Votes
18 months ago
why give exposure to this douche?
Rating: 19 Votes
18 months ago
ok how is this at all bad?????? scraping sandpaper on your watch is akin to running your watch through on a concrete floor
not a common scenario at all.
Rating: 17 Votes

[ Read All Comments ]