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From the Forums: Lumia 920 74m drop, HTC 8X wearing away in pockets

As we all recover from the New Year parties everyone held or were at, we're still getting back up to speed here at Windows Phone Central. Our community forum has remained active over the past number of days, so what's been happening?

First up is Bernard Chelin with his emotional story of taking photos of fireworks from the Story Bridge in Brisbane, Australia when his Lumia 920 is accidentally dropped over the railing, which is quite a fall indeed. Hitting concrete at the bottom of the drop, the Windows Phone (even though Nokia mobile phones are built to last nuclear fallout) didn't survive.

Broken Lumia 920

"Amazingly the photos I had just taken had already uploaded to skydrive via 4G so I still have the last few snaps of the countdown with my friends. To my surprise though as I looked on in horror the screen was still on. By the time I got down there though it was off.. For such a big fall it fared pretty well though.. the outer casing shot off to one side and the front screen is smashed but all the pieces are still there. To say I am devastated is an under statement. My advice. Don't drop your phone off a bridge."

We've previously looked at the durability of the Nokia Windows Phone, but this fall was of course too much of it to handle. It's a shame that another had to be destroyed, but it does serve as an important reminder to any smartphone owner - don't drop your Windows Phone over the edge of a bridge.

Be sure to head on over to the "74m Drop Test - results within..." thread and add your words of support for the poor chap.

HTC 8X wearing away

Windows Phone Central ready Suckdontblow has published a thread on our community forum that looks at some wear and tear of the HTC 8X. The Windows Phone is said to discolour when being carried in jeans pockets for a duration of time. The coating on the rear of the device and corners slowly turns black. Unfortunately, the response from HTC wasn't comforting:

"So, what was HTC's response to a phone that's turning from blue to black within a month - and seemingly going to get worse? 'Exposing the phone to abrasive surfaces could color run the material of the unit (e.g. carry phones in pocket on jeans)'. Well, there we have it, if you own a HTC 8S/8X don't put it in your jeans pocket."

Our own Jay Bennett has confirmed the issue, though I cannot offer any opinion due to our review unit not being carried as often as required for it to discolour. Should you find yourself with a HTC 8X in possession, congratulations - you own a Windows Phone that shouldn't be carried in pockets of jeans.

You can join in the conversation and add your experiences in the "HTC: Don't carry your phone in your jeans" thread.

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Reader comments

From the Forums: Lumia 920 74m drop, HTC 8X wearing away in pockets

103 Comments

I carry my HTC 8x in my pocket jeans and it never get discoloration on all corners and besides I have case wrap comfortly

Give it time. I noticed when I visited my local AT&T store a few weeks ago that the colored 8x looked like a coating and the lumia looked like solid material. I thought to myself that I would want the 8x in black only for that reason. If I wanted color, I would have to go with the lumia. The 8x is a matte soft-feel material. Even if it were solid it would eventually develop shiny spots from that pocket abrasion. Nokia had the best idea with a high gloss solid material. The conventional surface of the Samsung Ativ is also more practical.

Standard HTC foolishness. Sell it to you and forget about it. I like their designs and I have a Titan, but youre a fool if you buy an HTC device. They don't support their devices.

If your comment was on Reddit I would have (or even would've, if that floats your boat) down voted it. 

I've had an HTC HD7S and TITAN, while I'll always have a "soft spot" for HTC, Nokia is just a such more better OEM than HTC as far as customer support.

 

I had a HD7 for 2 years.

After 1 year the Flash broke. In the mean time the phone restarted itself and bricked - occasionally. I thought that is MS WP Fault.

Then I tried to “fix” the phone – warranty.

The HTC guys failed to tell me that it was a design flaw in Desire Family Phones.

The metal strip from the back of the phone was at fault, it was to flexible and the SIM (witch is near under) moved and bricked my phone.

I will buy HTC – but not this year.

I will switch to Samsung or Nokia… HTC has no WP Apps and no Updates.

In my experience Nokia's no better, with the rainbow-colored scratches in their soft screen coating that can occur randomly from scrolling via swiping a finger. They let me send it in but did nothing except hard reset the phone for no reason.

Can you describe those scratches in more detail? Several times I thought my screen was damaged but the rainbows seemed to be finger oil. They disappeared after I wiped everything with a damp towel. I'm actually looking at a thin rainbow distortion right now. Dry cloths have no effect. Maybe the oil refracts light from the LEDs or something. Just wondering if this is common...

I know what you mean about oil, that does wipe away. I have a couple scratches where it looks like a line of oil along a line for several millimeters. But I can feel the ridge of the scratcheswith my fingernail, and no amount of wiping will make it go away.

I'm not being racist. I have nothing against Taiwanese people. Heck, I have nothing wrong with Asian People.
 
But compare a Hyundai (Korean car) to a BMW. It isn't a close battle. Europeans and even Americans make things nicer. But this isn't saying Asians suck. They have skills that we don't.

Your comparison falls apart when you compare Dodge to Hyundai. All this "Asians can't make quality stuff" is absolute bellony.
And guess where most of the stuff is made anyways? Asia.

Replied to the wrong comment. And I never said all Asians...
 
"And guess where most of the stuff is made anyways? Asia."
 
Yes, but who designs it? The people that make the phones in the factories don't design it.

Yes. Sorry. I wasn't trying to come off as racist. It is harder to express things by typing as people get the wrong idea. If I was talking, you wouldn't think I'm racist.

Or any color Nokia Lumia 920, where color pigments are added to the resin, unlike others who add color coatings and then try to find ways of protecting it.

Nope, I find the glossy finish to be more grippy. With glossy, I think the oils from our fingers stick to the phone giving you a better grip. My red 920 is not very slippery. The matte finish, though, doesn't attract as many fingerprints!

Actually, only SOME of the Lumia 920's are slippery.  The Cyan one still has the non-gloss texture, like the 900, and I've never had the dropsies with either one (I own both the 900 and 920 in Cyan).

My dad has the matte black 920 and I have a yellow glossy 920. They definitely feel different to hold, both feel nice though.

I dunno, mine hasn't done anything. I have heard they've addressed that in later models of the phone, though.

I have a case - but I didn't buy this phone to hide it in a case. The soft coating was my main draw, and as reviewers have noted, it's remarkbly nice to hold too. Here's the deal: You buy a phone, touted for it's signature and iconic design and within a month, your blue phone is now black.
 

  • HTC made no mention, anywhere, to suggest this could become an issue
  • The phone is promoted by both HTC and Microsoft as "signature", with HTC having a YouTube video claiming they went through an intensive and exaustive design process.
  • Design wise, there is clearly a fault, and HTC cannot admit this. In a quick Google search I found over 9 different websites, with masses of users in each having the same issue. Phones are designed to be carried in a pocket, period, doing this shoudn't dramatically alter the apperance of the handset after such a short period of time.
  • HTC's response in saying "don't put it in a pocket", or "buy a case" isn't right and should be challenged.

Solution #1 Get a Case. #2 If no likey case, get Armorshield that wraps the entire phone in a protectant. #3. Get black. #4. Suck it up and live with it. #5. Get Nokia or Samsung phone. Look at all the options HTC is giving you!

I can't do it. The most I can do is go with an Invisible Shield, I find I don't want to bulk up or ruin the design of these beautiful phones.

I have had the HTC Titan and the color wore off on the front microphone piece as well as the front bottom corners loosing its color. No surprise here...... that's why I decided to go with the LUMIA 920 BABY incipio dual shield case

I wasn't sure which one to get to replace my HTC Titan either, but I went with a glossy red Nokia 920. This was because I had a suspicion the matt finish of the HTC might show more wear, and with a 2 year contract (my first at this length), I didn't want a non replaceable cover looking worn.

This was the good thing about the Titan. I replaced the cover (which is basically the whole shell) for £20 and it was like new again.

Verizon offers a clear plastic hard snap-on cover for the 8X, so I picked one up exactly because I was worried about this discoloring issue on the red one I got for Christmas. And i didn't want the red to be hidden. Its overpriced, in my opinion, but I couldn't find anything anywhere else like it. An option for those other 8X users out there...

Well as much as I would have liked to have gotten the blue 8x all these color stories have made me glad that they only had black on day 1.

I was actually going to start a post about this very issue. It started happening to my 8X about a month after purchase. I thought it was dirt on the corners so I would clean in with Windex. It didn't make it worst, but it damn sure didn't make it better. I thought that polycarbonite didn't fade? How come it doesn't fade on the Lumia phones? I bought a really nice case off of Amazon for under $2.00 (with shipping, under $5.00 in all), but I like showing off the blue, but I can't because it looks cheapened now. I loved my HTC Tilt, my AT&T Fuze, my sainted HD2, my HTC Radar and I love this phone the most except for this discoloring issue. So this will be my last HTC phone as well. I very much wanted the 920, but I love my T-Mobile plan, hate AT&T so I will shop for an unlocked 920 when my doe is right.

Never use Windex to clean a smartphone. The ammonia damages the screen and I would imagine it can't be good for the soft touch coating on the 8X either.

It doesn't happen with Nokia phones because the color isn't a coating, its baked right into the plastic.

The 8X is made out of the same "all the way through"colored plastic as the 920. The difference is that the 8X has a soft touch coating. It feels wonderful, but is also the source of these issues.

I'd thought the 8X had the polycarbonate dyed like the Lumias. Huh... Well that sucks. Glad I have my L920, though I'll have to remember not to drop it off a bridge.

As an aside: I don't much care for using a case, but when I'm seriously using my phone as a camera, I wouldn't mind a wrist strap. Anyone know of a case with a hole for a strap on it?

Jeez. Just sayin' between hating the look of cases, as well as having color wear off with time, glad I've got what I've got. Also, after a month and a half of Lumia ownership, the only drop has been one of those handing-it-over-to-a-guy-and-I-think-he-has-it-but-he-doesn't drops. Luckily it was on carpet, so there were no marks.

No, fuck what rephaelhermon says. You offer no opinions of worth.  Both handsets have pros and cons... ALL handsets from WP to iOS, from Moto to Sammie, have pro's and cons.  Trolling hate... take that shit back to engadget.

Never use a case on my phones but as the cameras get better I'm regularly wishing for a strap. -
just a strap. Seems like it could be easily molded into a corner

As much as people think it's a sin to bury you're Lumia 920 in an Otter Box Defender case I purchased one for mine never been happier! My phone for what ever reasons had slipped out of my hands a few to many times... Mainly where I work I need the extra grip because it could end up covered in paint sludge or scuffed from hard flooring... I gotten used to the case and actually like the look and feel now.... I guess I could always slip it off when I go out but dam it looks beefier now or more industrial which is more like me!;)

I've owned a red 8x for a little over a month and have not had a problem with the coating wearing off. A certain pair of dark Old Navy jeans does give me the dirty corners problem but it easily comes off with a microfiber cloth and a tiny bit of water. My other jeans do not give me the dirty corners. I'm pretty sure it is from the 2nd batch of Verizon 8X'es, hardware revision 2.

This discoloration issue is just a reincarnation of a number of threads. I never had my phone in jeans and it had the issue after a week. Got mine on the 5th of November.

I posted it because no one had posted about the issue I was having with the 8S and no one had posted a HTC response about the jeans, either.

My clear maximum cover Z.A.G.G. Skin is picking up color from my jeans and it looks dirty on my white 920

I think much better question is - who the hell wears jeans nowadays? This is 21st century, not 1980s.

I don't know what you guys do with your phones but every phone I've owned is in mint condition. I always put a cover and be sensible about it.

Because this device is marred by a design fault, not every device mind, just certain ones. I've done nothing unusual with this, nothing I haven't done with my Titan, Mozart, Sensation or Lumia 800.

Tried the 8X at a store a few days ago. I liked how it felt in my hand with the coating, but having owned a Sony Ericsson-device with a similar coating a couple of years ago I started thinking about how it faded away in some spots after a while. The thing that really was a dealbreaker for me though was the on/off button and volume rocker...

I've dropped my 920 a few times but no more than two or three feet and it didn't even get a scratch. But it is as slippery as a eel covered in grease that's been dipped is oil.

It's a thin rubber coating. It wears as one should expect it to. You don't put an eraser in your pencil case and expect it to stay white forever.

I only put a phone in my pocket once and it cracked the screen! NEVER again! I always use a belt holster and they always look brand new 2 years later! No screen protector or case.

I've had a red 8X for just over a month and I can confirm the whole soft coating rubbing off issue. In three weeks all four corners had darkened, with the bottom left corner starting to reveal shiny plastic underneath. Just under two weeks later that corner is completely revealed. I currently have a ticket open with HTC regarding the issue as I find the wearing to be completely unacceptable and the do not put your phone in jeans argument to be ludicrous.

The discoloration has ~nothing to do with the 8X, some denim pigments bleed, and the 8X's surface is sensitive to picking up pigment as most soft rubber coatings do, similar things have happened to mag-pulls on my rifles or even my Lenovo ThinkPad.  Before people blame the phone, they should read their clothes labels first.  (Yes, I have an 8X and if I carry it in a suit pocket, there's no discolaration but it starts whenever I carry it in my jeans).

Actually, the discoloration has everything to do w/ the 8x. The corners appear black, but the discoloration does not appear under a microscope. it could be that the abrading is altering the optics of the outer coat on the device, but it's not color wearing off from clothing.

This reminds me of my friend's red CC-1031 soft case for his Lumia 800, which started turning black after a while. I assumed it just got dirty. Is the same thing as with the 8X coating?

To the idiot above who can't read and tried to call me out. Lol

I already said I got the 8X.
And I already said that all phones have their pros and cons.

My friend, who works for HTC, showed and told me about the discoloration a few weeks ago. it's actually not wearing down. Under a microscope, there is no discoloration. It seems to be something w/ the optics relating to the coating layer. :(