Many users are reporting that the display on their iPhone 11 scratches very easily. Based on some of the comments we’re seeing, it sounds like this year’s line-up scratches more easily than previous years’ models. Consumers are understandably upset and say Apple’s claims that it used harder glass than any used on any other smartphone can’t be true.
iPhone 11 scratches easily
We’re seeing a growing number of comments saying that the iPhone 11 scratches easily on Reddit and Apple’s forums. One Reddit thread asked whether it was just the iPhone 11 or whether the 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max also scratch very easily. The general consensus was that all three of this year’s models are scratching easily with very little wear and tear.
One Apple forum user said he and his wife both bought new iPhone 11s and placed them inside their pants pockets, and both screens were scratched by the second day of the use. The poster said his was scratched on top of the selfie camera. Several others responded within the same thread and said they are having the same problem. One person even said the screen “feels like it can get scratches or smears when not even in contact with sharp or rough surfaces.” The person added that they had not had this problem with any of the previous iPhone models.
Another Apple forum user responded that they have what looks like a finger smear but that it doesn’t go away, adding that it’s “more disturbing than a scratch.” The person said they never use a screen protector, and this is the first time they have encountered something like this. Others also noticed a similar issue with a crack that’s not a crack.
“I have a legit crack/scratch in my screen that showed up out of nowhere. No drop, no incident… but I can feel it with my nail, but its [sic] not a crack in the sense that it’s emanated out of any spider webs,” the person wrote. “Just a small line-chunk out of the front facing glass, along with a separate small chunk missing a few millimeters away. Truly almost seems like a defect in the manufacturing to have appeared after 24 hours of use without incident.”
Toughness versus scratch resistance
When Apple introduced the iPhone 11 line-up, it said the phones have the hardest glass used on any smartphone right now. Some are calling this claim into question because the iPhone 11 scratches so easily. However, there is a lengthy thread on Reddit which goes into one reason why it may seem like the iPhone 11 line-up scratches so much more easily than previous models.
One Redditor responded to the original question about whether this was a rumor, explaining that scratch resistance and shock resistance are two different things.
“At this point if we talk about high grade glass there are 2 options,” the person wrote. “1. Glass that is very durable and strong and doesn’t shatter quickly on impact 2. Glass that’s highly scratch resistant. Pick one.. Can’t have both.”
“Strength and hardness exist in opposition to each other,” a Redditor said on a different thread. “The stronger a material is, the less hard it is; the harder something is, the more prone to shattering,”
The best advice we can give is to use a screen protector and case with your iPhone 11, 11 Pro or 11 Pro Max. Unfortunately, some forum users say they experience reduced sensitivity with the screen when they use a screen protector, but if you want to avoid the iPhone 11 scratches that are being reported, this is really the only way.