Apple plays defense on iPhone 6 bending, software concerns

Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:43pm EDT
 
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By Arathy S Nair and Sam Adams

(Reuters) - Apple Inc (AAPL.O: Quote) broke its silence on complaints about bending iPhones, hours after withdrawing a glitch-ridden software update as the company struggles to restore momentum to the rollout of its latest phones.

"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," Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller said in an email.

Apple shares closed down nearly 4 percent at $97.87 on Thursday, wiping out nearly $23 billion in market value.

The new phones face criticism over their bendability, dubbed "bendgate". Social media and online forums have been abuzz with comments about how the new phones can bend when placed in back pockets or while wearing skinny jeans.

Apple said its iPhones feature stainless steel and titanium inserts to reinforce high-stress locations and use the strongest glass in the smartphone industry.

The only way an iPhone may have bent is if someone put it in their back pocket and sat on the phone for a very long time, said Laban Roomes, chief executive of Goldgenie, which customizes and gold plates iPhones.

Apple was also forced to withdraw a faulty update to its latest operating system after some users of its new phones complained of call service disruptions.

"We apologize for the great inconvenience experienced by users," Muller said.   Continued...

 
A customer holds an iPhone 6 (R) and iPhone 6 Plus after the phones went on sale at the Fifth Avenue Apple store in Manhattan, New York September 19, 2014. REUTERS/Adrees Latif