The iPhone XR has been getting labeled as the “cheap iPhone” since it’s $200 less expensive than the iPhone XS. This might lead some to believe that the handset is inferior to the latter in terms of build quality, especially since its colorful shades might remind people of the plastic-clad iPhone 5C.
Turns out, this assumption isn’t anywhere close to the truth at all. It seems Apple hasn’t compromised on the build quality of the iPhone XR. In fact, it appears to be on par with the iPhone XS. DIY YouTuber JerryRigEverything made the case for this in a new video where he put the rainbow-themed smartphone through his standard durability test.
As you can see in the video above, he starts out with a scratch test using a knife and Mohs scale of hardness. The display begins showing grooves at level 6 and even deeper ones at 7. This is pretty normal for most iPhones. What’s highly unusual is the resolution of the screen at just 1792 x 828 pixels. This isn’t what’s being tested though, so it’s not held as a mark against the iPhone XR in these evaluations.
Next, the iPhone XR’s 7MP selfie camera and microphone are scratched. They pass the test with flying colors, so you can be reasonably sure neither will get damaged by a knife poking at them. Moving on to the sides, they’re made out of anodized aluminum and not stainless steel like the iPhone XS.
iPhone XR Sapphire Fail
The frame holds up pretty well when attacked with the knife. The paint job peels off a bit, but it doesn’t suffer lasting damage. The test also confirms that everything is made of metal and there aren’t any inferior substitutions. As for the back, it’s made out of some fairly strong glass. The flash unit and Apple logo is well protected underneath it.
Apple claims that it uses sapphire glass to cover the iPhone XR’s 12MP lens, but JerryRigEverything thinks this isn’t the case since the material scratched at a level 6 when sapphire shouldn’t start showing damage until level 8. This is actually a complaint he’s had with other iPhones as well, so the company isn’t doing any worse than before.
The iPhone XR also made it through the burn test without a hitch. Its pixels disappeared within 10 seconds of being exposed to the flame, but eventually made a full recovery. Finally, the handset’s 7000 series aluminum body was flexed from the front and back. There was no bending from the front and only a slight one from the back.
Overall, the video concludes that the iPhone XR is built like a solid brick. With that out of the way, it remains a matter of preference as to whether you want to pay $799 for a non-FHD screen.