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Black iPhone 5 Anodized Aluminum Susceptible to Scratching?

After the original announcement of the iPhone 5, one early concern amongst readers was how well the anodized aluminum back and edges of the black iPhone 5 would hold up over time.

One lengthy thread on our forums has been actively discussing the potential issue and Pocket-Lint in their review did note some wear around the edges after some early usage.
Ditching the glass back and reducing the thickness of the glass panel on the front has affected the design of the metal band around the edge of the iPhone. It is now chamfered and while that looks pretty, we've already noticed that on the black model the edge has started to wear, revealing the shiny silver aluminium metal underneath the "slate" coloured coating and, indeed, we've witnessed it on two separate models, ruling out a fluke manufacturing error.
One person on another forum got straight to the matter and took keys and a SIM card tray pin to the back and edges of an in-store iPhone 5 unit with these results.

Of course, purposefully scratching a device is a bit extreme, but daily usage of any phone will generate some wear and tear. This may be a concern if you are particularly sensitive to the issue.

Top Rated Comments

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83 months ago
It scratches when you take keys to it?!

That's it, I'm getting a refund!
Rating: 114 Votes
83 months ago
That dude who scratched it in the store should be forced to pay full price for it.
Rating: 93 Votes
83 months ago
That's pretty disrespectful of the store display unit to start scratching it up like that.
Rating: 80 Votes
83 months ago
Nice way to condone the vandalism of someone else's property, wonder if that person will be conducting the same special 'tests' on their own $700 piece of equipment?
Rating: 57 Votes
83 months ago
Something had to replace the yellow screen drama.

First maps, now this. :rolleyes:

And the guy who scratched the in-store iPhone should be made to pay for it. He should've scratched his own phone.

EDIT: UPS just delivered my phone no more than two minutes ago and I can confirm that there are no scratches on mine out of the box (as others have reported to be the case with theirs).
Rating: 56 Votes
83 months ago
So it will scratch when someone tries to scratch it? Seriously?

I have two pockets for a reason. iPhone in one, everything else in the other.
Rating: 55 Votes
83 months ago
WTF metal scratches if you take hard sharp objects to it? God forbid the glass screen cracks if you drop it too!
Rating: 44 Votes
83 months ago
Metal scratches, even anodized. Not sure why this is even worthy of mention.
Rating: 38 Votes
83 months ago


The scumbag who decided to purposefully ruin the back of a phone that doesn't belong to him, on launch day no less, should be prosecuted for vandalism. Shame on MacRumors for glorifying his childish "tests."

Yes, things scratch when you beat them up with sharp metal objects. My screen protector on my 4S gets scratched when I put it in the same pocket as my keys.

Come on. This is just a sad attempt for page views on MacRumors part.
Rating: 34 Votes
83 months ago

If I saw the guy do that in the store I would beat the s*** out of him. I don't care if it gets me locked up too.

Rating: 33 Votes

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