HTC One vs iPhone 5 drop test! (video)

by: Bogdan PetrovanMarch 28, 2013

HTC One vs iPhone 5 Drop Test featured

If there’s one thing we at Android Authority are famous for (or is it infamous?) is the way we do our drop tests. Yeah, we love to send shiny new gadgets to their premature deaths, which usually involves a stretch of hard concrete and a generous serving of slow motion.

Last year in Hong Kong, our Darcy LaCouvee was in charge with drop testing the Galaxy S3 and the just released iPhone 5. As much as we hated the outcome of that test, we had to give it to the iPhone, which survived the ordeal with just minor bruising. The Galaxy S3 didn’t fare so well, ending up with a shattered screen and a popped back cover.

But the Galaxy S3 was made of plastic. How would an aluminum-built Android flagship do in a drop test?

To find out, Joshua Vergara, our new international man of gadget destruction, took the HTC One, with its snazzy aluminum chassis, and pitched it against the current standard for build quality, the iPhone 5, in an epic drop test.

Just like we did before, in our HTC One vs iPhone 5 drop test we tried to simulate some of the mishaps that can happen in real life. So we dropped the two phones from three different heights – from pocket level, from chest level, and from head level. To top it off, we dropped the ill-fated gadgets face down from head level, in a final attempt to test their durability.

And boy, we broke them. No, I will not spoil the fun, just watch the video below.

There you have it – the first HTC One vs iPhone 5 drop test on the internet. Impressed? Horrified? Which device do you think is better? Let us know what you think in the comments and check out our image gallery below.

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  • theBOSS

    This is what you get without using plastic hahaha

    • Amine Elouakil

      I want to see the S4 being droped in the same conditions.

      • John Koetsier poyo

        htc just lucky..only once face drop to front screen

  • Jusephe

    Looks like HTC aluminium is much thinner, because iPhone just got a little scuff but HTC has an twisted metal around point of impact.

  • Adam Koueider

    So where are those plastic haters now. The speaker fell off… seriously from 2 and half foot high….. The aluminum bent in… really. Plastics looking pretty good from where I am standing

    • TY

      I think what they hate is how Samsung made their plastic feel like cheap.
      Polycarbonate can be made with textures which makes it feel more premium (like the faux leather on the Galaxy S II). However, Samsung insists on giving their plastic a cheap feel since SIII…

    • Rob C

      Plastic Phone like plastic boob, some like it others do not.

  • Eric Francis Alvez


  • luke

    i’m sure plastic is undestructible on the other handside… xD bunch of fanboys

    no phone ends up goodlooking after falls on concrete… and plastic chassis is not so good in assorbing energy falls but.. as u like..

    if u care about your ohone you will take care. you cant buy a 800$ plus phone and treat it like a 100 bucks one… so.. it matters quality material and what we like to obtain in daily usage. i just find folish spendig so much money for plastic, notoriously less expensive and quality oriented than plastic

    • You should check out the drop test between the iphone and galaxy S3. There was one for the note 2 ass well. Those plastic bodies seemed to hold up real well.

  • Let’s see how the galaxy s4 do with it’s plastic body and gorilla glass 3

    Hope it’ll be much better

    I’m still waiting for the moment I will use my phone without a case

    Hope Galaxy S4 manage to satisfy me with this thing

    • Andres Galvan

      Gorilla Glass isn’t break proof, it’s scratch proof… Always been that way.

      • Not scratch-proof. Scratch-resistant, shatter-proof (or was it shatter-resistant?, I don’t really remember…) (in the same way windshields are shatter-proof).

        • Andres Galvan

          Yes, thanks for getting my point across for me :P

    • Plastic body is easy and cheap to replace by the way, just unscrew the back then pop a new casing on it,
      Hah! Plastic wins in weight affordability and durability

      • Lion

        only iphone 5

  • Bill

    Now that’s something I never thought of before, the aluminum on the HTC One was dented and bent, quite easily too.

  • ccsvchost

    I guess the HTC’s speaker grille wasn’t built well. So both phones ended up with cracked screens, I guess that’s what they get for using glass. They better figure out an efficient way to use capacitive sensors with plastic.

    • Dude are you mad every phone touch screen is made of glass not plastic its the back which is made of plastic , galaxy s3 screen also shattered when drop to ground , look it at youtube .

      • ccsvchost

        Don’t you guys understand what I’m saying?!!? I’m saying that all manufacturers should stop using glass and figure a way to use plastic for the screen.

  • Jack

    i don’t care i never broke a phone in my life i keep good care of it and I’m buying the Htc one.

  • tBs_Battousai

    so basically, if you drop them, they break?

  • AncientAstronaut

    Makes me wonder how good my iPhone 3GS is! I must have dropped it at least 5 or 6 times from various heights and it doesn’t so much as have a scratch on it. The iPhone’s build quality seems to be deteriorating — all in the name of making it thinner and lighter every freaking time!

    • doctortroll

      No you’re just to poor to afford a real phone. LOL

  • Can you please do drop test for other flagships like Xperia Z, S4 as well as Lumia?

  • M.B

    Plastic wins every drop test…

  • Is this the promo HTC One or the public final release version?

    • its the promo HTC ONE

    • Andres Galvan

      If you’re asking what I think you’re asking, then it’s a dummy non-working model. The ones they keep on display at mobile kiosks and the like.

  • camtej000

    Do a drop test for the Samsung galaxy SIV, Please!

  • HardyHarHar

    Nobody wins! In the end both screens cracked. Which as a result both phones aren’t usable at all. Plastic or aluminum doesn’t matter. What matters is the front panel unless of course you can use the back to navigate the screen lol!

    • Steffan Hernandez

      depends on how damaged the phone is, more often than not the touch screen can still function, but if the LCD is damaged then your phone is a good as a paper weight. But you can get good parts to repair it yourself for pretty cheap.

  • Arsenal™

    im just waitin for the s4 to be dropped….we’ll see who’s tough then

  • poop mcguinness

    So the htc did better then the iphone 5.. Which did better then the s3 last year. little super glue on that speaker grill and you’re golden.

  • Jared Persinger

    I drop my phone all the time and I’m starting to think that it is ont of the toughest smartphones around now, I have the droid razr maxx hd

  • Aung

    Unfair drop test video… See HTC never let drop screen face down… That’s why no crack on the screen.

    • your an idiot

    • Andres Galvan

      I may be wrong, but maybe it has something to do with the fact that the iPhone’s edges are square and it doesn’t move much or moves more when it falls. And plus, these are random occurrences, it won’t fall right on the screen every time in real life.

  • izzyt

    And this is why there are covers

  • Major_Pita

    This is why no matter how pretty the phone is, mine always are in a TPU case – the grippy mmaterial is less likely to get dropped in the first place and they usually have a slight lip around the front edge that prevents screen to ground impacts.

  • spahic

    why ,really why did u do this men , a little bit more and i was crying,pls dont crash anymore phones,when u dont want to have it give it to me i havnt anyphone,!! lost since 25,january !!!

  • Daniel Chavez

    iFixit just released the HTC One’s repeatability. It’s horrible. Even the iPhone’s screen is a piece of cake to fix.  I rather have a plastic phone that I can easily fix, which is going to be the S4.

    • lol yea and if your screen breaks spend 150$ for a new one because its glued to the digitizer

  • leozno1

    Man it was painful to watch him drop the HTC One like that.

  • vivek

    HTC One…all dented…and one fall on face and that glass is gone too…maybe they used “cheap” aluminum.

  • joey

    with the iphone does not really matter, once you drop it it is time to get a new phone. iphones are worst.

  • barkomatic

    Both screens cracked on the first drop–so that’s pretty comparable. However, aside from the screen the iPhone seemed to hold up a little better. It tended to have nicks and no pieces flew off whereas the HTC One had dents and the bottom aluminum speaker grill fell off revealing a plastic underlay. That gives it a bit of a cheapish impression. I’d replace the phone in either case, but at least with the iPhone you have the option of Applecare+ whereby you can get it replaced for a $50 deductible. The HTC One will run you hundreds more than that. I’ve got a HTC One on preorder so this gives me pause.

  • Kev

    Try testing the HTC One camera lense, you could break it with a well aimed ping-pong ball….

  • Oh. But nobody drop test a plane :D.

  • Oh. But nobody drop test a plane :D.

  • kmac_321

    Dumb ass test!

  • Steffan Hernandez

    Repairing the iPhone 5 screen is easier than the 4/4S (thank you Apple) and almost anyone with a little patience and technical knowledge can do it themselves. BUT the HTC One screen repair is not as easy but can be done! I haven’t seen very many guides for it besides iFixit’s tear down but the screen assembly is available at

  • Steffan Hernandez

    Also, if you dent up the metal housing on the HTC One you’re pretty much screwed. Replacing that is probably the most risky repair out there right now. The iPhone 5’s back cover and outer housing can be replaced no problem and comes in custom colors too. So in the event your iPhone 5 had such an impact that the frame and outer housing is busted all to crap, you can come out with an even better one!

  • Arthur Weinberger

    HTC One 4ever!

  • matthew

    It’s extremely difficult to tear down the HTC One. You can learn how to disassemble it from

  • Anonymous

    Plastic will always be better for durability. I have an HTC One X that I have dropped in the exact same way as the iPhone’s first drop, but onto smooth tile, literally nothing happened to it. No dents, no cracks, nothing.

  • Madison

    I have an HTC 1 as well they are so hard to break and they have no glitches they are such great phones while the iPhone breaks automaticly for me and way too many glitches I got the problem of it locking my phone and burning and it also wouldn’t read my finger. The iPhone truly sucks but I truly recommend the HTC 1 brand. ?