Sleek and shiny, your iPhone’s glass shell is a thing of indisputable beauty – that is, until you inevitably drop it on the ground only to watch its back shatter in slow-mo into a hundred glittering pieces. Meanwhile, the investment that you once used to take cute dog photos and tweet hot takes with abandon has morphed into an unsightly, finger-slicing mess. Sure, you can still smash that like button as much as your heart desires, but not without running the risk of it turning into a bloody hand massacre.
Get a Case They Said, It Will Protect It They Said
Aside from its visual and tactile appeal (and the adrenaline rush you get from wondering whether it made it out of that head-on collision with the telephone pole intact as you were walking and texting), a glass back has its perks. Namely, it makes wireless charging possible thanks to the material’s low conductivity. Unfortunately, it also makes your iPhone even more fragile.
In a boast that has iPhone owners everywhere unintentionally saying “hold my beer”, Apple claims that the glass it uses for its phones is “the most durable glass ever built into a smartphone.” Nevertheless, glass is glass. Even with the common sense addition of a shockproof case, you still end up playing a risky game of will-it-won’t-it. Whether by dropping your iPhone in just the wrong way or inadvertently crushing it, accidents happen.
Apple has been integrating glass shells into their smartphones on and off for the past decade. Specifically, the following iPhones feature glass backs in their design:
|iPhone 11||iPhone XS Max|
|iPhone 11 Pro||iPhone 8|
|iPhone 11 Pro Max||iPhone 8 Plus|
|iPhone X||iPhone 4|
|iPhone XR||iPhone 4S|
So if you’re one of those unlucky iPhone folks seeking guidance on a solution for your cracked glass back, at least you’re in good company. And if you’re one of those people who are especially klutzy (like me), we’re here to help.
So, How to Fix a Cracked iPhone Back?
Honestly, the better questions might be whether you can or should fix it. Apple is known for quality. It’s one of the things that keeps iPhone fans coming back year after year. However, that solid construction comes at a price. Namely, it makes repairs a nightmare – not just for you, but for Apple technicians and third-party professionals alike. But if you’re feeling ambitious and want to give it a go, here’s what you need to know.
That spiderweb of shattered back glass that is causing you so much stress and turning your fingers into a bloody mess isn’t just glued to the frame – it’s basically been fused with the inside of your iPhone thanks to a strong epoxy and tiny welds. In short, the only way you’ll be able to pry off each tiny puzzle piece of glass is with a ton of patience and by painstakingly dissolving the epoxy with either extreme heat or cold.
Even if you are able to remove all of the broken glass back, there’s still the difficult matter of finding a non-functional iPhone with a good frame and back to use for the replacement. Plus, with DIY repairs, you always run the risk of creating future complications, like causing Face ID to stop working or other damage to your device’s components. So, if you’re reading this thinking “Wow, that sounds like a whole lot of work for something that may not even function properly when I’m done”, we couldn’t agree with you more.
Verdict: Take a pass, it’s a tedious and next-to-impossible repair with a big margin of error
If you’re still not ready to call it quits on your iPhone, taking it to a third-party repair shop is always an option, especially if you’re out of warranty or didn’t invest in AppleCare+. Just remember, this type of repair is just as tricky for the pros as it is for you. As a result, expect the fix to be priced accordingly (i.e. expensive). And again, there’s no guarantee that your iPhone will work correctly or that the repair can be completed safely.
Verdict: Worth considering, just be realistic about the cost and possible outcome ahead of time
Repair With Apple or an Apple-Certified Service Provider
Truly, the only tried and tested repair option for your iPhone’s cracked back glass is by entrusting it to the professionals at Apple. With their skills, knowledge, and the proper tools, Apple technicians will have you reunited with your beloved, newly-pristine iPhone in no time. At a price, of course.
That price varies a lot depending on which iPhone you have and whether you ponied up the cash for AppleCare+. If you have AppleCare+, or if your phone is new enough for you to still add it on, the fix will cost you a reasonable $99 (plus $199 for the extended warranty). However, if you’re unlucky enough to be stuck with out-of-warranty prices, this repair can run as little as $349 for an iPhone 8 to as much as $599 for an iPhone 11 Pro Max. If those numbers aren’t scary enough to convince you to invest in AppleCare+ for your future iPhone, we don’t know what is.
Verdict: Go for it, as long as you have AppleCare+
Finally, if you’ve read all the other options and are thinking “Heck, I might as well get a new iPhone for all the money and hassle fixing mine is worth”, we are right there with you. But don’t just stick it in a junk drawer where pens and old ketchup packets go to die – we’d be happy to take your damaged iPhone off your hands and give you some extra cash for your troubles. And we’re not just talking pocket change.
Depending on your phone’s carrier, storage size, and condition, you can expect to sell your cracked iPhone for as much as $475 (as of the time of writing) to be sent directly to you in your payment of choice. From where we’re sitting, that’s a nice little deposit on a shiny new toy that doesn’t tear up your texting fingers. Interested? Click here to get an instant quote.
Verdict: Do a happy dance for all that cash, and the new iPhone, in your pocket
Cracked iPhone Back Problem Solved (Kind Of)
As long as Apple keeps coming out with iPhones that feature delicate glass shells, Apple diehards will continue to play Russian roulette with their favorite tech. Thankfully, options are out there to fix what your Otterbox couldn’t prevent. For our money (and yours), just say yes to paying the extra $199 for AppleCare+ and save yourself all the trouble and cost of expensive repairs. Or, treat yourself to an early upgrade with the money you’ll make by selling your cracked iPhone to us here at GadgetGone.