Is there a Nexus 4 crack epidemic?

November 29, 2012

nexus-4-glass-back

Availability problems aside, the Nexus 4 is in the hands of a respectable number of people by now. That means forums are already filling with reports from people eager to describe their first impressions of Google’s latest device. Unfortunately, a fair number of them reported problems with the glass back of their devices, ranging from minor nicks to complete shattering.

On the other hand, plenty of people say that their Nexus 4’s survived drops and other accidents without a scratch. So, what’s really happening? Is the Gorilla glass back of the Nexus 4 prone to breaking?

Drop it like it’s hot

We didn’t do our own drop test at Android Authority, but there is one doing the rounds that shows the Nexus 4 withstanding a 4 feet drop on concrete without much damage. The glass back did fracture when the Nexus was dropped from about 6 feet, although not as severely as I would’ve expected.

On the other side, we have people like Joshua Topolsky from The Verge, who were less lucky. Topolsky reported that he dropped his review unit from the dining table on a hardwood floor, a mishap that resulted in a cracked back plate.

nexus 4 cracked topolsky

The small crack is visible near the flash LED.

One could argue that being a review unit, Topolsky’s Nexus 4 might have been a pre-production model, and that the retail version would behave differently. But if you skim threads like this, you will see that plenty of people reported similar experiences. Some report that they dropped their devices from a foot or so with fatal consequences; others say that they just found cracks on their devices without ever dropping them or subjecting them to other stresses.

The Nexus 4 got a cold

In one extreme case, Kellex from Droid-Life claims that the glass back of his Nexus 4 cracked when he placed the phone on a room temperature stone countertop. He had the device for just two weeks, and he supposedly treated it with utmost care and never dropped it. Moreover, the same thing happened to the Nexus 4’s cousin, the LG Optimus G.

As you can see in the images below, there is no sign that the two devices were submitted to mechanical shock – usually, when you drop a device, the cracks stem from the point of impact, where they are deeper and denser. In this case, the phones display a single clean fissure along their length.

This Nexus 4 went against a stone countertop. It lost

Like the Nexus 4, the Optimus G features a Gorilla Glass panel on its back

Kellex believes that the difference in temperature between the phones and the stone countertop might have caused a thermic shock, which could explain the cracks. But I find this explanation a little hard to believe – to fail due to a difference of 20 oC (about 70 oF), the glass back would have to be extremely frail. Moreover, Gorilla Glass protects millions of devices, and if it were so sensitive to temperature variations, we would’ve known by now.

What can be the cause?

With so many reports, you can’t just dismiss them as freak accidents or negligence on behalf of the users. So, what could cause the Nexus 4 crack epidemic?

One explanation could be a faulty design. The sides of the Nexus 4 are protected by a sturdy piece of plastic, that offers a bit of protection to the glass back. Assuming that the phone is laid down on a smooth surface, the raised sides should ensure that the glass doesn’t come in contact with the surface.

I am no engineer, but I assume that the side band could create some tension in the sheet of glass. This existing tension could cause the sheet to fail under the right conditions. The outer glass panel is glued to the inner plastic layer with the holographic design – that can be another issue.

Another explanation could be a batch of faulty sheets or perhaps the glass sheet itself is too thin. If that’s the case, we should see fewer complaints once LG hits its stride with manufacturing the Nexus 4. In case you were wondering, Gorilla Glass is pretty darn strong:

Not a deal breaker

Should the wave of reports about broken glass backs on the Nexus 4 deter you from buying one? I don’t think so. As I said, it’s possible that the problem is specific to the first units that came off the production line. Even if it’s a design flaw that LG can’t fix, keep in mind that there are plenty of early adopters that have abused their phones with impunity.

The Nexus 4 shapes out to be a very popular device, and I am sure that LG will offer replacement parts. But the back plate of the Nexus is more than a casing — it includes the Qi wireless charging coil, a NFC antenna and other miscellany. For this reason, it’s unlikely that the replacement back plate will be cheap.

Photo by Brian Klug from Anandtech

You probably shouldn’t get the Nexus 4 if you are prone to accidents or you plan to use it in demanding conditions. Glass is glass, and it will fail if you stress it enough, regardless of how strong it is. An insurance plan might be in order.

To wrap up, I still think the Nexus 4 is an amazing device, offered at an amazing price. The glass back might be its Achilles’ heel, but the Nexus 4 is still worthy of your attention. Just don’t cheap out on the bumper.

Let us know your experience with the Nexus 4 or the Optimus 4.

Did you have any problems with the glass back of the Optimus G or Nexus 4?

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Comments

  • Steve Rodrigue

    BTW, the plastic contour does not protect the back glass. The phone literally slide on surface. You could use the Nexus 4 to play Air Hockey. ;)

  • Chris Bigg

    Glass is awesome when you need to protect something while seeing through it, windshield, windows, etc, but it is crap for protect things against breaking…its glass. I don’t care how many gorillas you throw into it. Metal and plastic work REALLY well for this, because they are not fragile, both of these materials don’t fracture easily at room temperature. Another reason I’m sticking with my Gnex.

  • Apple_Nexus

    What about using the bumper?

  • Jamison

    I can overlook everything that has happened with the N4 launch except the fact that I wasn’t able to purchase the bumper with my order of the phone. Of course the bumper isn’t fool-proof, but when it is the only protection available for a glass device I absolutely should have been able to order it.

    • http://www.dsaif.tk/ Saif

      Get case from Amzer

  • MasterMuffin

    The same problem that iPhone 4 had because it also has a glass back. Funny, nexus FOUR and iphone FOUR

  • http://www.facebook.com/scrichfield Kelly Scrichfield

    Were there any fruit bowls around? especially ones with apples in them. The glass back was stupid when apple did it, why would anyone copy stupid? Huh LG?

    • http://www.facebook.com/scrichfield Kelly Scrichfield

      At least you can cover up stupid, and have an amazing phone. Get an Otterbox.

  • dorkboy

    Did you all forget that this is an electronic device that is not meant to be dropped. I understand accidents happen but it is not the responsibility of LG or Google to make a bulletproof device. All electronic devices are fragile and should have every precautions taken to protect them.

    • http://www.dsaif.tk/ Saif

      But the problem is some people are saying it broke with temperature change

      • view2share

        And most phones get dropped, now and then.

  • Script101

    The problem is LG not Gorilla ! Google should not let LG use Nexus brand…

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002964368660 Blanca Pez

      The Nexus 4 is Gorilla Glass 2 both front and back.

      • view2share

        Are you sure that is Gorilla Glass on the backside???

  • K V P

    I don’t bother about glass or breaking, because I won’t be getting it in near future as Google is avoiding UK customers, not in stock and already rumors that there will be 2 months backlog for existing orders. By the time Google manged to sell in UK, Nexus 5 may be released. :)

  • Hamid Marc Afsharieh

    I broke the back of mine, sitting on it on the couch

  • http://www.androidradar.de/ Leif

    I would never use a phone with glass back without a case. That’s also the reason why phones with glass or aluminium (scratches easily) shouldn’t get high design ratings. Yes, they look and feel nice – but only if you never use them and treat them like an egg which is the oppositve of what a phone should be.

  • http://profiles.google.com/nicandro.m Nicandro Filho

    Let’s be honest. Nexus 4 has a great hardware but is a big Fail! He has almost as many problems as the iPhone 5. And to make matters worse, he is the hardest device to be bought in the history of smartphones!

    I’m almost giving up on buying a Nexus. Do not want to buy last year’s model (who knows how long it will endure well the evolution of Android) and I’ll never be able to buy this year’s model (which, apparently, is a headache for users) …

    • Bish Fora

      and what are those problems dear Sir?
      no SDcard support. most free cloud service can be used to take care of that.
      no LTE, apparently it works, limited but there
      Lagging, a really simple tweak [like clearing cache and turning off an option solved it.]
      Out of Stock, now i am with you on that point. nearly giving up on the hope to get my hands on it while its hot and outraged seeing a E-Bay top Seller sold 39units and had 6 more units on hand and selling them for $549 – $599 range
      and as for evolution of Android, I will put my money for it being relevant for at least two years

      • http://profiles.google.com/nicandro.m Nicandro Filho

        1 – Fragile glass at the back,
        2 – No USB OTG (Ok! This one, probably, is a software issue and probably will be fixed soon)
        3 – Buzzing noise or a click from the phone/camera.
        4 – Purple lens flare.

        These are some problems that I read about… I hope that these problems are just the first batch. Or that LG fix them soon. But they are make me re-think about buy this phone. Maybe in a couple of months…

        You think the Galaxy Nexus will be relevant for the next two years? I have my doubts. The Nexus S was almost forgotten since the G Nexus came out. I Know that they still running the “State of Art” in Android, but i guess it is the last breath.

        The phones probably will have 8 cores at the end of 2013… The Android developers will go crazy for the next big update! I’m expecting some big surprises in the KLP.

        Imagine a Sistem designed for a 8 Core Phone, with 3 or 4GB RAM, running in a Dual Core with 1GB RAM?

        • Bish Fora

          I see your optimism and trust me, I am with you on that but even letting run my wild dreams I don’t see 8 Core Phone for 2013.
          even if it is Technologically possible but Financially speaking, as a Business, with all the fabs designed to produce quad cores from dual cores just six to eight months ago and the required OS needed and design changes,
          it is not coming before Holiday Season 2014, its just not feasible for the business. Now this leaves Apple a distinct advantage though. As rumours has it, Apple and Samsung are soon to EX, the new facility that Apple takes their business to, need a fab redesign anyways and they might just use this opportunity, that would give Ax [a7 may be] processors the possible chance to do something with Cores

      • memyself&i

        About the relevant part, its (Optimus G’s) successor is coming out in May.

      • Cole Raney

        It’s not always possible to have an Internet connection. Sd card slot is a must. Its not hard to include either. Also a physical home button is amazing to have instead of software buttons.

  • Yan Kar

    My 8 years old is using it for 2 weeks now and no scratches so far, tough she did complain that after 20 min of game ( simple game) phone became hot .
    Read it on the blogs that phone does becomes hot with some games..( weird i tested by running 1080P movie for 3 hours and phone was normal.

    • Bish Fora

      it was a Hot Game
      and the 3 hour video you watched was a Cold Documentary

  • Nessim

    What fanatic nexus fan boys are saying GOOGLE (and not LG) Nexus 4 :
    no sd slot -> not a deal breaker
    no removable battery -> not a deal breaker
    no USB OTG mode -> not a deal breaker
    no availability -> not a deal breaker
    no robust phone -> not a deal breaker
    no LTE -> not a deal breaker
    8GB of internal storage -> not a deal breaker

    F**k google and f**k Nexus brand even for 100$ less

    SGS3 stays on the top

    • Bish Fora

      Nessim,

      I don’t know why you starred [*] your comment. Fantastic is not a bad word but just so let you know it is spelled with C not with K

      Fantasti[c]k google and fantasti[c]k Nexus brand even for 100$ less << thats what you meant right?

      • Nessim

        Fantastic -> 9 letters => 7 stars and not only two… :)

      • Anoop

        LOL… the times when you feel sorry for the stupidity. Dont be a sheep in the herd like Apple fans. These were the exact things that made me not buy an iPhone but when Google also limits user choices then they too will receive the same response.

      • sam

        he used * as a wildcard character since fantasti[c]k has 9 chars. ;)

      • Bish Fora

        Anoop and Nessim ,

        alright, Humor is dead, I get it, I need to get over it. But please for Hell’s Sake [assuming most of us aint going to the other one] please dont call me [a google fan that is] a Sheep. Some fan boys might take it to Apple’s Lawyers and we might have yet another Infringing Sue coming for copying widely known Apple fans name. We have enough already

        sam, has been a while since i last searched ” * ” in Google. would be interesting what result it might show and in that sense ” * ” can represent infinity number of characters

        • Nessim

          the exact term of what you are refering to is “regular expression” and not a borrowed “wildcard”. plus in the english language (and others too) we put in the middle the exact number of stars representing the missing letters.
          :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002964368660 Blanca Pez

      The Galaxy S III with 2GB RAM and unlocked is $250-300 more expensive than the Nexus 4. That should buy a decent case.

      • Nessim

        You adressed one point of the seven I have mentioned!
        That’s exactly what I’m saying :
        The only inovation brought by the Nexus4 is the price, nothing more nothing less

    • LOL

      slow processor -> not a deal breaker
      half ram -> not a deal breaker
      50% more pricing -> not a deal breaker
      late software updates -> not a deal breaker

      enjoy your sgs3

    • LOL

      BTW, n4 does have LTE not at its full potential but it does have it !!!

  • Danny Dunot

    HA! Take that plastic haters! Everyone wants to complain about Samsung and their ”Plastic” backs and it looks cheap. It isn’t LGs fault it’s more so people wanting Android to be more like an iPhone than an Android phone. Which is hilarious to me.

    My GS3 can take anything and I’ve dropped it enough times to know that it should be ruined but nope. While iPhone users shatter their backings,Nexus 4 glass cracking, and people ”loving” the design, I’m over here enjoying my sturdy (battery changing, SD slot) phone. Don’t complain about LG it’s the users who kept crying about Samsungs plastic by now it’s android users crying that LG put a glass piece in the back.

    Goooo Samsung!

    • Nessim

      nice said

    • Ninetysix

      Try shattering an iphone 5’s backplate.

      • enlapanlima

        Or try to scratch it.

    • Zeals

      My friend actually managed to crack the back of the Galaxy S3 backplate, no idea how she did it without damaging any other part of her phone, good thing it was a $1 replacement part :P Also do you remember the Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 drop test? The extra flex of a plastic frame makes a phone more vulnerable to side impacts.

    • http://www.facebook.com/adam.eldin.7 Adam Eldin

      No, the S3 fails epicly at drop tests all over youtube. This is no excuse to use plastic, my EVO LTE has an sd card slot, a battery to last a day or two, is far more durable than an s3, and has a much better design. That thing is sexy, plastic is not sexy

      • Randy Sylmar

        Drop tests on youtube means nothing. I got my girlfriend the S3 and told her be careful and guess what? She drops it and doesn’t care and laughs it off. She doesn’t care too much about tech and tells everyone it’s a tank.

        And after 4 months of heavy usage it is still perfectly fine with the exception of a few dings on the back plate. I replaced it with the exact same one for $2 and like new.

        By the way your EVO LTE is plastic you idiot.

        • http://www.facebook.com/Dooger32 David RT

          Lol your all idiot s. My HTC Sensation sports a metal back which is also its antenna…dropped that bitch from a flight of NYC transit steps…….scratched metal shell…..perfect screen, no hardware damage internally and not major dents. SGS3 is crap blurry display my sister in law owns one icrap 5 is just as bad my fiance dropped her flat on its face and the LCD behind the gorilla glass broke. Any phone can shared and break depending on the angle of impact. Damn morons

        • http://www.facebook.com/adam.eldin.7 Adam Eldin

          the top third of the back is plastic for nfc, you idiot ya can’t use metal for nfc

      • http://twitter.com/DanAntonson Dan Antonson

        I’ve seen quite a few drop tests of the S3 on YouTube, and the phone holds up. I already know of two individuals who dropped their phone from less than 3 feet and had to have the screen replaced to the tune of $300 bucks. Get a case people!

    • http://twitter.com/dancoya Dan Coya

      But it’s so ugly, and you can’t fix ugly. You can fix broken glass.

    • JRLMMUSIC

      Plastic backs can be beautiful and ugly.. its ugly on the samsung phones, but beautiful on the htc phones. If the plastic is a textures rubber like plastic it looks and feels great. If the plastic is like the samesung s3 or s2 it looks nasty.

  • Luke t

    I don’t need to baby my devices. I need a phone that can withstand abuse. That’s why I got the nexus. Have had zero problems and don’t have to worry about it breaking in my pocket. Even my old iphone 4s held up better than this fiasco

    • Luke T

      Galaxy nexus that is

  • Android man tutorials

    I have an idea be more careful and buy a case, want to still show the back fine get a bumper, problem solved

  • earl

    Funny, I sent you guys stuff about my S3 randomly cracking, and had all sorts of other proof it was a gorilla glass issue, and low and behold, its this phone that gets the nod for being reported on… shame.

    • APai

      any phone with a gorilla glass must be susceptible to the cracking if its related to the glass. but if its the housing that’s in question, then LG is responsible here.

  • mynamegoeshere

    There could be any number of reasons why glass would break. The biggest thing to remember about hardened glass is that it is tempered. This process leaves residual stress in the entire body of glass which helps make it resistant to breaking. However, microscopic scratches create stress concentration points which causes this residual stress to focus at the ends of the scratches. Kind of like the concrete floor in your house. There are sewage and likely other pipes that extend through the concrete floor and into the ground. Cracks in the floor usually occur around these points because they are stress concentrators. If there were a large enough scratch in a concrete floor the crack would form there as well. Glass just happens to be ultra sensitive to scratches.

    What I am getting at is these phones may have had microscopic or barely noticeable scratches that stress concentrators thereby lowering the overall stress the glass panel could handle before cracking. A screen protector on the back and front of the phone may help mitigate these problems. That is, if this is the overarching problem. It is possible there are other factors at play here.

  • Alain Lafond

    Seem that glass case maybe fragile. But what would happen in a very environement (-30, -40).
    The screen of my wife’s Galaxy Nexus cracked when going to a day outside to sudden house temperature. I’m not I,,l buy a N4 for that reason.
    Plastic may look cheap, but it stand temperature very good. Thjen you only have to care for the screen…
    Hail, Galaxy Nexus… For me, the best I ever had…

  • Twisted247

    All the work of Tim Cook, He created an account within the company and had employees of apple give the money to family members and friends only to abuse them and flood the forums with talk of poor build quality. In an attempt to take the heat off of the horrible accident they call the iphone 5. Shame shame on you timmy SHAME!! The video speaks for itself from the fellow with the speaking problem(only kidding obviously in a different country : ) …)

    As for LG it was a stupid idea to slap glass on the back of the phone anyways, And script101 is correct I still don’t know why Google would allow LG to use the Nexus branding.

  • Zeals

    You said it was dropped from 3.3ft without much damage, but in that same video when he is about to drop it from 6ft and there is the camera shot from the phone itself you notice cracks running up the drop left corner. 2:26 is the time stamp you want to be looking at. Might have to get a Zagg Extreme and the bumper case for this phone.

    • http://twitter.com/MrCycrus Raymond

      I believe that is the guys hair, because as soon as he drops it the “crack” disappeared.

  • PrM

    last saturday i dropped my GNexus, three times.

    :)

    one concrete floor from my hand

    two carpet from my hand

    and 3 wooden floor

    nothing happened.
    :)

  • Mitchturbo

    This issue stopped me getting one. My two year old son already broke the screen on my wife’s nexus7 and I’m just as clumsy with phones. I went for the HTC One x+ instead.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dacha.liceknjiga Dacha LiceKnjiga

    I got 2 G3s and both dropped numerous times, nothing happened. Also, my new HTC DNA (good bless America got something faster than Europe) is also took one hard drop on the tiles, nothing happened! Glass at the back? That’s really stupid in 2012, most of the smart people using protective cases anyway. I personally changing back design many times, why not, it’s funny and you’re phone is protected all the time. Poor NEXUS 4, it could be a good selling phone.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jpdeveau Jason Deveau

    If you buy a phone with a glass FRONT and BACK you are asking for trouble. No sympathy for you here.

  • http://twitter.com/tanisacolor Tan Ha

    Hey, in their defense: the concept sounds like a good idea. But we don’t know until someone creates it. I am glad we have a product to learn from. We should just make it compostable material!

    • Cole Raney

      Apple had glass on back and front of 2 phones. We should know by now that it is a bad idea.

  • Mike Yedwab

    mine fell off my dresser two times which is about 5 foot tall. It landed on a hardware and not a scratch. It happened the day I got mine. I guess an email made it vibrate it and it fell to the ground, I was so scared to look, however it was fine both times

  • seronac

    They’re just trying to make phones more human by letting them have a crack on their backside, just like humans do.

  • monkeypox69

    Glass back = bad idea.

  • monkeypox69

    People complain about “cheap” plastic phones, but what are impact-resistant helmets made out of? It’s not glass or metal…

  • NickMAN5671123

    I just barely set it down on my computer desk to activiate my NEXUS 4, and when I picked it back up to look at it, the was a hairline frecture in the center about 2 inches long. I am so mad right now. this is my first phone, I bought it myself not my parents and it already cracked??? love the hardware but its so fragile!

  • jason

    Canadian Nexus 4 here. Noticed the crack on the back glass today. Phone was never abused or dropped. It’s only 3 days out of the box!

    Thankfully RMA has been submitted to google and a new one is on the way. But with the cold hard winters in Canada. This may be a huge pain in the ass.

  • Nory R

    The think the biggest issue regarding people purchasing this phone is its delicateness. You got to remember, a lot of people coming for this phone or Galaxy Nexus/Nexus S customers. My phone fell of my desk due to its super slick glass surface and cracked both glasses. Is google/lg at fault for making a hella smooth surface? No.
    But these phone are fragile due to there ability to ‘glide’ so easily. None of my previous phones have slide off anything when I place them on their backs. I guess there is a first for everything.
    At least LG seams to be charging a flat $140 to repair both glasses.

  • http://twitter.com/dancoya Dan Coya

    3 days in back glass broken on my Nexus 4. Love the phone, super bummed. Has there been any response from google?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jackthoro Jack Thorogood

    Mine cracked within about 3 days but Google were great about arranging a replacement, no questions asked. I have a 4GS that lives in my same back pockets and that’s survived many, many months with no cracks. Probably the larger size of the Nexus 4 combined with greater flex and a thin / cheap glass are the culprits.

    • Scott

      Mine looks like the back glass broke by being stressed by the lower-right corner of the battery (looking back-on)

  • Scott

    I broke the back on mine by falling asleep on the couch with it in my front pocket. When I woke up it had two long cracks and a bunch of small ones near the bottom-right of the back

  • Scott

    Broke mine by falling asleep on the couch with it in my front pocket. When I woke up I took the attached picture.

    • Ray

      Wow, that sucks man.

      I am telling people that the back is some cheap glass, and it is definitely not Gorilla Glass like the front. If you tap the front glass with your finger tip, you will notice that the noise (response) from tapping is not that great, due to the high quality glass. Now, if you tap the back, the sound is much different. It sounds hollow, which obviously means that the glass is thin and does not have enough support.

      Again, sorry about your device. I have one too and I hold it tighter than any other phone I’ve owned, just so that I do not drop it.

      Let me know if you get it repaired, and what steps you’ve taken to do so. Thanks.

    • Ali Movadin

      same happened to mine. :(

      Too bad.

  • Unhappy

    My nexus 4 front glass broke on day two, when i put it in my pocket…. two cracks all the way across the width of the phone about 1/2 inch from the tom and bottom… grumble

  • M P

    Loving my Nexus 4 so far. Unfortunately it arrived with a tiny crack in the back near the volume key. It’s just two small cracks curving upwards so doesn’t look like shock impact, not sure what they were doing in the factory!

    I’ve only had it for a few days so haven’t had time to drop it. Thankfully Google support was very helpful and are going to get it RMAd. I’m guessing I’m not the first person to complain of it arriving with cracks.

  • TechHog

    Meh. Get a case. Even if it somehow cracks with the case, it’s hidden

  • Ali Movadin

    Mine just got a long crack too across the back, and with no apparent reason. didn’t hit it against anything hard and never never ever dropped the phone. I’m sad. :(

  • zhang feng

    during a vacation to Colorado, my nexus 4 back panel got cracked horizontally.I’m sure I didn’t dropped it off, I guesse it maybe cause by temperture vararions. So I searched online and find the problem is just like this article said. How can I do with it? I know the phone is under one year warranty and I’ll call google play. I’m just wandering if someone has found a good solution with it.

  • Tom

    So I dropped my Nexus 4 this morning on the kitchen table from a height of 2 inches, while unplugging the charger. It hit the apex of the bottom curve on the back and smashed the back glass. Not impressed!

  • Donte

    My Nexus 4 device hit the concrete as I trying to put it back in pocket. The screen cracked down the middle and only half of the screen was working. I called Google and they said they couldn’t do anything about it. They referred me to LG. LG told me my phone was out warranty because of user damage. They told me to send in the device. So my device got there in a couple of weeks and they inspected the device and gave me a call and to repair the device it would $140 for the front. So I asked them if my back would crack how much would that cost me? They said around 30 to 40 dollars.

  • Robert Davis

    Just called LG Repair at 1-800-793-8896 for USA Customers. They will give an RA number and shipping address in Texas. It takes 5 – 7 business days to return to you not counting shipping time. After they get the phone a technician will call to let you know what the cost of repair is. The back of my glass broke when It dropped out of pocket as I reached to pick something off the ground. The ground was cold (a little snow but mostly asphalt); as well a small corner of the front below the menu buttons. Phone still functions properly.

    Now I just have to figure out what I will use as a replacement until I get my phone back or if cost is comparable to replacement then I will just get a new one. I had a case but left it that day by the bedside – it was a generic leather cover case from Target. I can hear Homer Simpson say “D’OH!”

  • Bill Anthony

    Mine back glass cracked as I holding it!!!!

  • Michel HENG

    I don’t know if everybody have the same problem with the Nexus 4 but mine just committed a suicide. While I was sleeping, he jump off the table (not even 0.6m) where he was charging and felt on his front screen. The result is that my phone is now dead, no way to use the screen anymore and no way to get my stuff back.
    I greatly recommend each owner of Nexus 4 to get a case for it if they don’t want to get the same experience.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000391593412 Daenon Janis

    Yep woe is me I was listening to music and dancing with it and it flew out of my pocket and hit the ground… face effin first. Wouldn’t have been to bad if it just cracked but nooo the lcd broke too. Now I’m gonna have to fork out 200 for the LCD replacement

  • Jeremy Leong

    Does anyone have an opinion on the official optional bumper? Does / would it help in the majority of cases listed here?

  • http://www.facebook.com/markalroberts Mark Roberts

    24 hours after getting my Nexus 4, I have rested it on a flat, clean kitchen surface (back down) – it just started making the crackling sound…. I turned it around and could see it literally cracking in front of my eyes! Totally uniform shatter. Not dropped, just placed on the surface – see attached image (the wood veneer surface in the background is the surface i put the phone onto!!!)

  • Daniel

    Sadly, I didn’t dropped it but it cracked, after 10 days I have it.
    Very disappointing…

  • Josh

    The front smashed on mine yesterday. Took a slide of the couch…Yeah, gorilla glass seems epic. The phone didn’t last 24hrs in my hand

  • jim

    Got my nexus 4 9 days ago put it down on stainless steel worktop and it cracked. Now 6 hours later more cracks have appeared can get replacement in first 28 days but bet I get charge for miss use. Not impressed

  • Chris

    I don’t know if I’m going crazy, but every picture I’ve seen of Nexus 4’s with dead digitizers have the same thing in common. They all crack near the top portion of the screen. After a single 1 ft fall, My N4’s digitizer is dead and I have only two or three cracks towards the top of the phone. I have an HTC one S that is an utter disaster. It’s completely shattered. Shards are falling out of the edges of the screen to the point where I can see the proximity sensor…and the digitizer still works fine on that phone. So I think the N4 has an Achilles heel towards the top. Anyone have a cracked screen where the digitizer still works?

  • Drew Moffitt

    This is what the back looks like after laying it down on a granite countertop: http://imgur.com/a/DDkjS#yXC9y0G

  • mjpado

    Had first accident with one of family’s 3 N4’s. My brother dropped his and it hit a metal pointed edge. This caused a crack in the back, thankfully not the front. Found online replacement for a little over $50, so not too bad. This includes the NFC connector and induction plate. If you are adventurous you can buy “just” the back plate and reinstall the parts previously mentioned off eBay for $25+ shipping.

  • Aaron Smrots

    It looks like there’s probably a manufacturing defect by LG that Google and LG are quietly trying to sweep under the rug:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spontaneous_glass_breakage

    Yes, glass can crack without impact:

  • Willis

    My Nexus 4 screen cracked and became useless after one drop from 2 ft. Dead after two weeks – what a piece of junk!

  • benny

    My Nexus 4 was never dropped. I reached my hand into the fridge to take a picture of a bottle of beer (2007 Dark Lord), lined up the shot, snapped a pic, put the beer back in the fridge, held my phone as I walked into the other room, and the back just cracked in my hand. WTF?!!! And my battery has only been lasting about 4 hours a day. My phone is 3 months old. This is ridiculous.