Back in the fall of 2014, Apple was revelling in the massive success of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, when a little-known issue began to get widespread coverage. The issue at hand was being called “bendgate,” where the iPhone 6 Plus (and at times, the iPhone 6) was being bent while in people’s pockets.
At the time, Apple reportedly brushed off the controversy saying only an “extremely rare” number of iPhones 6 devices were experiencing the issue and flatly denied it was due to poor design. That wasn’t entirely true.
According to Motherboard, new internal documents show Apple knew the iPhone 6 was more prone to bending than previous models. During internal testing, Apple found out the iPhone 6 was 3.3 times more likely to bend than the iPhone 5S, while the iPhone 6 Plus was 7.2 times more likely to bend. That explains why the iPhone 6 Plus model was experiencing bending at a higher ratio.
Eventually, the iPhone 6 started to experience another issue called “touch disease” in which the display would start to fail due to an issue with the touch-controller chip. The chip just so happened to be located at the weak point where the initial bending was occurring. One issue led to another, and as a result, Apple was sued leading to the release of the internal documents by the judge in the ongoing lawsuit case.
With “bendgate” in the rearview mirror, Apple may be able to brush the documents aside, but that doesn’t diminish the impact that the company knew the iPhone 6 wasn’t the most durable phone it’s ever made. And when issues began to crop up, it deflected blame onto the users.
With the battery-throttling fiasco and now this, Apple could really benefit from being more transparent with its customers. When it makes a mistake, just own up to it. It was forced to do so with the battery issue, but it got away with it during “bendgate” until now. There’s no way around it, Apple doesn’t look too good right now.