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Apple offers inside look at iPhone 6 reliability testing lab in response to 'Bendgate' issue

Apple offers inside look at iPhone 6 reliability testing lab in response to 'Bendgate' issue

September 26, 2014

As part of its efforts to beat back the so-called “Bendgate” issue surrounding the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus, Apple has granted some members of the media special access to its laboratory where it conducts reliability tests on its smartphones.

Its move to give outsiders a rare look into the otherwise off-limits facility follows the official statement it released earlier today in initial response to reports of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus bending, which reads in part:

We chose these high-quality materials and construction very carefully for their strength and durability. We also perform rigorous tests throughout the entire development cycle including 3-point bending, pressure point cycling, sit, torsion, and user studies. iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus meet or exceed all of our high quality standards to endure everyday, real life use.

The Wall Street Journal sheds some light on a couple of the tests, the “pressure point cycling test” and the “sit test.” The former process “bends the enclosure repeatedly to ensure that the iPhone can be bent and pressed at reasonable force throughout its life” and the latter “simulates sitting on a hard surface with the phone in the back pocket of a pair of tight jeans.”

The Verge also has a comprehensive report on Apple’s reliability and durability tests for the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus.

For its part, CNBC has published a video report taking viewers inside Apple’s reliability testing lab. Check it out:

If you can’t see the video embedded above, please click here.

According to the report, the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus each underwent 15,000 tests before they were released, with Apple hardware engineering chief Dan Riccio (picture above) saying that the pair is the “most tested product we have ever done.”

In the report, Apple marketing head Phil Schiller is also quoted as saying the Bendgate incidents are “extremely rare occurrences.” He also reiterates a key figure from Apple’s initial statement: out of the more than 10 million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus units sold since last Friday, only nine customers have contacted Apple with a bent iPhone 6 Plus.

It just goes to show how a nonissue this so-called Bendgate controversy has been, unlike, say, Apple’s iOS 8.0.1 update snafu.

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