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Drop It Enough Times…

June 3rd, 2012

I was taking Ponta for a walk, and dropped the phone. I’ve done it dozens of times since I got the phone. The worst that’s happened was a small crack in the lower right corner. Today, my luck ran out:



On the down side, the front glass is shattered. It feels like it could easily get worse; run my finger over the shattered area, it catches more than I like. I sure don’t want to have that loose in my pocket when I reach in for it.

On the up side, the phone still works, even the touch screen, and even in the shattered areas.



I was surprised at how little I was upset by this. It’s a great piece of equipment, and I was looking forward to using it well after I got a replacement–it certainly holds up far better than my old iPhone G3 after I got the 4.

I was figuring, hey, I’ll still keep it; the video camera will be worth it alone, and maybe I can use it for other things not requiring a screen. And then there’s the fact that the new iPhone is coming out soon, which means I won’t have to put up with a shattered screen for too long. Still, I figured I’d get a screen protector film to hold what’s left in place.

But then I thought, hmm, I wonder if they sell replacement kits. I figured it wouldn’t hurt to look, so I went online and was surprised to find out that relatively cheap glass replacement kits are available. In Japan, they go for ¥3880 ($50), but that would be worth it for me. The iPhone 5 (or whatever they end up calling it) may not be out until October. I could survive four months with a broken screen, but looking at it as $12.50 per month to replace it, not to mention keeping it around afterwards as an extra camera or whatever, it’d be worth it.

Alternately, there is ¥3200 ($41) solution with the front panel only. I wonder if the glass will feel better or the parts would be more reliable.

The replacement surgery is pretty damned involved from what I can see, but with the videos on the web, I should be able to do fine.

Anyone here have experience with this? Any advice?

One other idea, though a bit of a long shot: take it to Softbank, see what they do. I figure a good chance they’ll say no can do, but you never know. A G3 I had got video issues, and they just replaced it on the spot–but that was not owner-incurred damage. On the other hand, they may have inventory to clear with a new phone expected soon, and maybe would like to create good customer relations, what with AU now selling the iPhone as well. Probably not. But hey, can’t hurt to try.

Whatever happens, it’s cool. I still have the new iPad for running apps. And, by the end of the year, I’ll have the new iPad, the new iPhone, and the new Macbook Pro. So, there’s something to look forward to.

Now all I gotta do is figure out a way to stop dropping the damned thing.

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  1. Jim
    June 4th, 2012 at 01:50 | #1

    Now all I gotta do is figure out a way to stop dropping the damned thing

    It’s like holding a bar of soap at times. I bought a good case and haven’t had any problems. They are quite ugly though. Here is a link to the ‘Seidio Active X’ case I went with.


  2. Anonymous
    June 4th, 2012 at 03:49 | #2

    Hey Luis,
    Man! What kind of drop would cause such damage?
    Looks like you dropped into a deep rocky ravine…
    Tell us more about that!

  3. kensensei
    June 4th, 2012 at 03:51 | #3

    Ha ha, looks like Ponta took a big bite out of it while it was on the ground. Yum!

  4. Luis
    June 4th, 2012 at 09:50 | #4

    No, no, this is pretty standard. It just dropped from my shirt pocket as I leaned over. Dropped maybe 4-5 feet onto the asphalt. I’ve done that before, but I think it’s a matter of exactly how it hits. It just takes one blow to do all that.

    Jim: actually, I almost never drop it from my hands, it usually falls off of things, or, most commonly, drops out of my shirt pocket. It’s already in a case which gives good traction while held.

  5. Luis
    June 4th, 2012 at 20:43 | #5

    Well, anyway, I ordered the front glass replacement and a set of tools, they should arrive by the end of the week. From what I can see, it should be a 1- to 2-hour process, but in the end, the phone should be back to like-new. Maybe better than it was, as the glass already had a few small cracks in it.

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