Not another ‘gate’. The iPhone 4 had ‘antenna-gate’ and the iPhone 6 has been struck with the moniker ‘bend-gate’. So if your iPhone 6 Plus has bent in your pocket, are you entitled to a refund? That depends…
Earlier in the week, a smattering of iPhone 6 Plus owners (that’s the massive 5.5’’ one) started reporting that their new phones had bent out of shape during normal use. One owner, who kept his iPhone in his front trouser pocket, spotted that his phone was bent when he ‘saw the reflection of the window in the iPhones slightly distorted’.
Bent iPhones extremely rare, says Apple
As the week went on the story started to roll out of control, with some YouTubers producing videos to demonstrate that the iPhone was indeed bendy. Apple has now come out in defense, saying that:
‘With normal use a bend in iPhone is extremely rare and through our first six days of sale, a total of nine customers have contacted Apple with a bent iPhone 6 Plus. As with any Apple product, if you have questions please contact Apple.’
Is a bend to be expected in such a big phone that’s just 7.1mm thick? Some point to the phone being made of aluminium, which is a relatively soft and flexible material. However, Apple has explained that the aluminium is ‘tempered for extra strength’ and ‘features stainless steel and titanium inserts’ to improve its strength and durability. Apple adds:
‘iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus meet or exceed all of our high quality standards to endure everyday, real life use.’
Can I return my bent iPhone 6?
So, if you’ve bent your iPhone 6, are you entitled to a refund? Any claim would need to be argued on the basis that the phone wasn’t of satisfactory quality and would be against the party that supplied it. You would then need to reject and return the phone within a reasonable time after purchase, usually three to four weeks.
And within the first six months of buying the product, it’s up to the retailer to prove that the goods were of satisfactory quality rather than you having to show that they weren’t.
If your iPhone 6 wasn’t of satisfactory quality and it’s too late to reject it, you still have the right to get the phone replaced or repaired. Since a bend might be a little difficult to repair, chances are you’d be looking at a replacement.
Will Apple’s warranty help?
You could also lean on Apple’s warranty, but it’s unclear whether a bent phone will be covered. An Apple support representative has said in response:
‘There is a test called a Visual Mechanical Inspection that the device will have to pass. If it is within the guidelines, they will be able to cover it. If not, the replacement would be a paid one.’
If bent iPhone 6s start to become more common, which Apple claims is unlikely, you might like to store your new phone in your coat pocket or a bag instead of your trousers. Buying a case for your iPhone 6 Plus might also be a good idea.
Have you bought the new iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus? Has it bent in your pocket? And if you don’t own one, have you experienced anything similar with another smartphone?