SquareTrade Posts Samsung Galaxy S III Versus iPhone 5 “Household Trauma” Test

Warning: Take any conclusions with a grain of salt, this is an unscientific test with many uncontrolled variables and the results could have just as easily gone the other way. 

Setting aside smartphone allegiances for the moment, durability tests are an inevitable part of high-profile launches these days and our friends at SquareTrade pitted the Galaxy S III against the iPhone 5. Who will win? I’ll give you a hint, if you’re a Galaxy S III owner, I’d have kleenex at the ready for the very last test. We’ll be the first to admit that it feels like this test was all iPhone, and maybe not intentionally, but definitely based on the conditions in which the phones were tested.

Of course, we should add that this test isn’t exactly scientific and if it were performed again, the odds could very well be against the iPhone as the Galaxy S III manages to fall or get hit in the worst possible spots each time. Is this a matter of chance (angle of impact), or a look at which company has the better manufacturing process? It could be both, it could be neither, but it’s still fun to watch.

The latest SquareTrade face-off video is here, and we pitted the Samsung Galaxy S3 vs. the iPhone 5. The theme was Household Trauma. We tested the phones when they were dropped in the driveway, went for a swim in the pool and when various household items were dropped on them. The result? Well, see for yourself!

SquareTrade via Phandroid

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  • sidekicker89

    David, which last test were you talking about? The beer bottles? :p

    • Yeah, that was a pretty tough break for the SIII, but the angle of impact played a clear role there.

      • Doakie

        Hey David. You did a great job bringing up the uneven impact issue. All the other blogs that have reported this have conveniently left out that observation.

  • Josue

    what a waste of a good corona lol

  • Deadeye37

    Poor SGSIII….

    I wonder how the HTC One S or X holds up to these tests.


    What a bunch of crap. The Gs3 landed on its face in the first test while the iPhone landed on it’s end. In the last test the bottom of the bottle landed on the screen of the GS3 while the iPhone took the blow across the edges with the bottle laying flat. Given a few more seconds I bet the iPhone would have fried under the pool test as well.

    Absolute fail on editing this obvious Apple advertisement.

  • schmidtmj

    Seems legit, since they held the iPhone at a different angle before dropping it….

  • Hana

    I wonder why the Samsung Galaxy S III is dropped on it’s face in the initial test while the iPhone is dropped on the bottom of it?

    • warblade044

      I agree. The initial test was not a fair comparison because the GS3 was dropped face first on cement while the Iphone 5 was not dropped face first on cement. If the Iphone 5 was dropped face first too on cement, it will shatter too.

      • Realest Ever

        i also agree. they were dropped at completely different angles. It seems like this is a pro apple video. Even in the last test it dose not seem like the items dropped from the same height or focused on the same area as they were with the iPhone

        • Tmo_Fan

          lets all agree that was so unfair the SGS III was dropped face down while the iphn 5 on the side.. also even if the iphn is more hard material it doesnt really do as much as the SGS III

    • hdjx

      Yup, we can call this unfair, fake, etc. This video makes no sense they weren’t drop equally.

    • Paul

      I noticed that too, it’s not fair to either on the drop test. The other tests, in general, were fair. How do we know there wasn’t anything added to the iPhone 5 for the water test?

    • HTC One S

      EXACTLY! That’s what I was going to comment on. That test was inclusive and I think maybe a little biased.

      • HTC One s

        I’m an idiot! LOL!


  • sapper11d

    Its totally not biased when you drop a touch screen on its aluminum back and the gs3 face down

  • Guest

    This was kinda one-sided toward the iPhone, you can plainly see most items don’t land the same on the phones.

  • whiteiphoneproblems

    Drop tests are dumb; I’d say the same no matter which phone “wins.” It’s all about how it lands.

  • Wait, WHAT!

    This was one-sided toward the iPhone, you can plainly see most items don’t land the same on the phones.

  • Jose M Gonzalez

    BS is what i call this vid they drop the iphone on it’s edge not it’s screen as they did with the S3. they also hit the iphone with the flat part of the bottle and not the bottom of the bottle as they did with the S3. like usual with the ppl that do these videos they’re biased.

  • KLEE

    Drop the iphone flat on its screen and drop the edge of the beer bottle on the screen and see how it fairs. This test is a complete joke and I love both phones.

  • eric stallings

    This is bullshit, the GS3 was dropped on it screen while the Iphone wasn’t. Come back with a non biased test.

    • Like I said, all angle of impact, this easily could have gone in a different direction.

      • Frigadroid

        I was told by a insider that the iPhones anti pussycat like reflexes cause it to land on its back every time! I didn’t believe him at first until he showed me some secret hidden camera footage shot by a PITA activist at the samsdung R&D headquarters in Pusan. The video clearly shows the samsung technicians trying to reverse engineer an iphone that was surgically tethered to a siamese cat ;-P

  • Chris

    Yeah Samsung dropped on face in initial versus side. Also beer bottle thing the Samsung took a brunt hit from the end of the bottle where the iPhone was more evenly distributed.

  • Mirad77

    Sorry @David as you first statement on this post is not justified in the videos. Just saying……

  • MagentaMadness

    what kinda horse crap is this?!…i stopped watching after the “lets drop the SG3 flat on its face while we drop the iphone straight on its bezel” test

  • chris

    What a bunch of crap, the water around the iPhone wasn’t the same density. What a biased bunch of crap….

    Seriously guys, this wasn’t a real scientific test with controlled variables.

    • bob90210

      The water was not the same density? Did they drop it the S3 in heavy water at a nuclear power plant?

      But you are right that the test is not scientific. In fact, the video is not a test at all but is, surprisingly, an ad. For everyone complaining about the fairness of the test, remember that SquareTrade does not care about fairness. They care about selling you insurance.

      • chris

        I was just being sarcastic about everyone’s whining about how things were biased.

        I do agree with David, dropping phones is always fun as long as they aren’t mine.

    • I’ll be the first to admit that, which is why I wrote such a line in the post. This is all about angle of impact, but drop tests are always fun.

  • Javier Ponce

    Top comments in Youtube which I fully agree:
    Totally rigged.
    The only test that was fair was the pool test. All others were rigged for the iPhone.
    F*** these guys, Apple must have filled their pockets.
    Biased crap tests. S3 was tortured and iPhone 5 was just tickled. S3 hit by bottle edge and iphone was hit by side. real shitty biased testing.

  • LoganK

    I love my Galaxy S III, but I can give credit where it’s due. All of the initial tests I’ve seen indicate that, very unlike the iPhone 4 and 4S, the iPhone 5 is an extremely solid and durable phone. (Of course, it’s always easier to design a smaller screen that is more durable.)

    I’m just glad that in 2.5 years of smartphone ownership, I haven’t broken a single device. This is compared to the Palm days where I’d break a screen every six months…

    • I hear you. This particular test I take with 3/14th grain of salt. But I’ve seen other videos that are more fair and surprisingly the iphone does seem to be a bit better quality build.

  • TC Holmes

    Lame lame lame. The 5 did not hit face first, and the bottle corner did not hit the 5, only the frame. I won’t venture to say if it was intentional, but there weren’t enough controls to make this even close to valid. Its essentially an Apple ad.

    • bob90210

      Close. It’s a SquareTrade ad.

  • HTC One S

    I completely disagree with this test. You treated the S3 completely different with the drop test and the beer bottle test. Do a “do over”. Drop the iPhone 5 on its face and drop a beer bottle on its face in the same manner as the S3.

  • MagentaMadness

    where’d my post go? lol

  • Kevin

    Android Authority posted a much better test. iPhone 5 still clearly won.

  • Koreandude79

    I like both phones but really, the Samsung galaxy S3, had more damage done to it because the impact of the many items you put on it was directly on the screen. Examine the videos, its all there. Put the iPhone in the same situations and lets find out if it does damage the screen. These tests seem to favor the iPhone 5 more. Square trade did a good job but they need to do a better job. Did they get paid by Apple?


    This biased video still doesn’t change the fact that the iPhone runs iOS6 and the GS3 runs Android, soon to receive JellyBean. I’ll take TRUE HD RES 720p AMOLED vs that funky res I can’t remember on the iPhone, I’ll take the bigger screen, after Steve Jobs said people didn’t want bigger screens, lol that company is a joke and people don’t see it.

    • bob90210

      Exactly. The S3 with Android looks and works so much better with a cracked screen than any iOS device with a cracked screen.

      • Bratty

        Love it Bob. GS3 got pissed on and these fools call it mountain dew!

  • DavidBiasedConfirmed

    I wonder why David happily makes this article yet there is no article to be found about the Iphone coming from the manufacturer with scuffs and dents in the phone?

    Why do people continue to come here and support this site? David is CLEARLY a biased iPhone fan and gives news about iPhone even when it has NOTHING to do with Tmobile.

    • loueradun

      That is probably because the iPhone is not carried by T-Mobile so therefore the iPhone 5 problems have absolutely nothing to do with T-Mobile news (which is the name of the site if you hadn’t noticed).

      Everyone always calls David out for being biased, but he’s really not, he just uses an iPhone.

      • frigadroid

        For real though! Why do people care what David does? This Android inferiority complex is so damn juvenile both phones can make a call & surf the web that’s about all that really matters to most sensible folks. Gees, you kids are taking your smartphones to damn seriously. Lighten up a bit this is how the Jews and Muslims thing got started they were cousins now they want to kill each other for pete sakes.

        • turkeyburgers

          The lesson of this video is that if you buy an iPhone 5 you don’t need a Square Trade Warranty. Okay, got it. Great sales pitch.

    • Oh Oh I know, because T-Mobile carries the Galaxy S III and this is a drop test involving the…Galaxy S III. I don’t report on iPhone stuff unless it directly involves T-Mobile, in case you haven’t noticed that. Also, I use an Android device, so definitely no bias confirmed. The only bias that exists is from those who sling it in my direction because they disagree with me.

    • <3David

      He’s clearly skewed toward Apple when 75% of the posts here are about Galaxy phones. Yeah, you nailed it.

      By the way, for everyone complaining the test was unfair – look at AndroidAuthority’s YouTube channel for their drop test and tell me that was rigged also (watch?v=6M5q5TRuAsY).

  • JBLmobileG1

    Now everyone calm down. Of course we all know this wasn’t a fair test and Square Trade sells insurance. I look at it this way, being that they sell insurance, they obviously figured that the Samsung Galaxy S3 will sell better in the long run so they decided to rig the tests so the S3 is the one with the poor out come. This way people will feel that they should get insurance for it. LOL Seriously though, why not just get a case? I have an otterbox on my S3 and love it. True cases can be expensive but they can save you a lot of money in the long run.


    Is is fake test. They Drop GS3 face down, drop the bottle on it on angle. And 100% positive Iphone was liqupel treated.


      Just watched video again, yes it liqupel treated iPhone. You can see how water slides away from surface of iPhone. Test 100% pro iPhone fake; however, I still do think that Iphone built tougher. GS3 more performance oriented then all terrain. You need smartphone with good map, integrated you tube and nfc with a loot more GS3 is the phone. Just watched video on it once, you never gonna go back to that small screen of iPhone. Do the internet browsing, or type text, you will love it. Viva Note 2 :-)))

  • loueradun

    As everyone else mentioned, the drop/impact tests were not fair comparisons, as the angles of impact much favored the iPhone in both cases.

    The only test that was truly unbiased was the water test, but the iPhone touchscreen was broken, and from my experience with water and electronics, that was just the beginning of its problems. Who cares if it takes one phone a couple seconds longer before the water seeps into all of the components… In fact, the GSIII may be easier to dry and fix than that iPhone with the busted touchscreen.

    I did find it intersting that the creators of the video immediately claimed that the iPhone survived the water test when it hadn’t… both phones had immediate problems but were still running, a battery pull plus a good drying/cleaning may have saved their GSIII!

  • s10shane

    wow the first drop test was stupid and pointless. iPhone 5 didn’t fall on the screen like the galaxy s3 did. then the beer bottle hit the galaxy s3 right on the corner of the bottle vs the iPhone 5 which it didn’t hit the screen on the corner of the bottle. this video is pointless. good job for failing square trade.

  • SamsungGS3

    Ok..ok..ok i get it!!!!omg! geeeezzz the iPhone wins!!! its always the iPhone!


    I will say if you hold the Iphone5 and the Galaxy S3 you can really tell which one is built better. I am a new owner of the Galaxy S3 and I bought it knowing I’m probably going to break it…lol I already have the Otterbox on order and until then I’m basically walking on egg shells. My Mytouch 4G was alot more solid than this phone ,but I’m taking the chance because everything runs so much smoother and it has a awesome screen. This “Test” is biased ,but it doesn’t change the fact that the Galaxy S3 is made of plastic and the iphone is made of aluminum. If you put the One X or S up against the Galaxy S3 you will probably have similar results. Samsung has the goodies under the hood ,but they need to catch up to HTC and Nokia on build quality if they are going to make a plastic phone. I know I am probably going to get slammed/flamed over this but facts are facts… aluminum>plastic

  • jonstonson

    this is such a lie! sardines are not a household item. No one likes that shit!

  • dan

    this “test” is kind of “unfair”. cause most lickys the galaxy s 3 wont break from getting hit with a beer bottle. and who will drop any of that stuff on their phone?…… 95% of people wont! and the iphone 5 would have shattered when hiting the ground, and you dropped it in its side, if you did the same with the galaxy s 3 it would be fine! trust me i do it all the time!

  • Hesster

    Personally, I wouldn’t trust the durability of ANY smartphone. That’s what cases are for.

    I’ve dropped my Droid 3 on the concrete two or three times, mostly from setting it in my lap in the car and forgetting it was there when I got out. Since it has a case, it’s still undamaged.

  • setzer715

    This is a rediculous post and a waste of time. First test one is dropped on its face and the other on it’s back. I can say that I personally think the screen on the Samsung IS weaker as far as dropping it goes due to the larger size but it looks so much better when using it!!!

    All of these drop test videos are a complete joke and a waste of time to watch. To have a real comparison you would have to have a much more controlled situation where both devices are dropped from the exact same height and land on the exactly same spot. One on it’s face and one on its corner proves NOTHING.

    Dump post IMHO, but I guess the jokes on me since you got me to respond to it!

  • Kelvin

    Unfair drop test. STUPID

  • wanting my GN2

    In the beginning and at the end of that video there giving away an iPad, enough said.

    • Bratty

      Thats because no one wants a xoom! You give away popular devices. Sigh.

      • wanting my GN2

        Oh yeah? So why don’t they give away a tab 10.0? Come on man this video is obviously biased. If they would of given one of those away than maybe it wouldn’t be soo obvious witch product they favor more.

      • theking_13

        Could’ve given away a Transformer Infinity, Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1, hell even a Nexus 7. Good try though, idiot.

  • Guest911

    Let me summarize the comments: GA3 good. iphone bad.
    Waaah waaaah. Whine about how your precious plastic phone broke more versus an aluminum one. Really? Morons.

    • I hate snobs and sheep’s


  • rw

    This is not even a real test!!!! amateur

  • od312

    Such biased crap. Test done by pro apple person.

  • Couple things… as we all noticed, this was a total con. NOW THAT THATS OVER WITH… maybe we can start reading some of the comments before we make our on. It was exhausting reading the same thing over and over with a diference of a new screenname. Did yall know there’s a way you can like a comment if you agree with it or was going to say the same thing???

    Lastly. Thru other, more fair vids, it shows the iphone has a better quality build than its predecessors. I’ve been somewhat happily android and anti iphone since day one. However, just like David gave android a try and liked it, I’m going to give ios a try. Absence makes the heart grow founder right?

  • Sharklover

    The square trade tests including a previous one is completely different to cnets brutal tests where the s3 survived everything. Should watch it if have not.

  • turkeyburgers

    Are they saying if I buy an iPhone 5 I don’t need to buy their Square Trade Warranty?

  • Adam

    HAHA wow that video was BIAS, its not a controlled test!. COMPLETELY DISCREDIT THIS!!!

    First, the road drop test; the height and angle will matter on any phone. So dropping at waist height on to pavement exposing fragile touch screen will shatter any screen, larger the screen greater the spider crack effect!! It would take a miracle to stop that destination from occurring, like a quick foot balancing trick to catch the phone to lessen the impact maybe… foolish tests

    The kid drops the Samsung G S3 screen flush to the pavement… Intentional? I think so!
    The kid dropped the iPhone 5 on its metal side, Intentional angled the edge of the device flush and the screen perpendicular to the pavement so the impact would be cushioned by the metal frame.
    BIAS!! That proves nothing!!! except that Samsung 4.8 screen is easy to break and how much they love their iPhone. DUH!

    Personally as an previous Nextel technician dropping any electronic in the pool is idiotic unless you are to prove it’s properties of water resistance, which neither are designed that way. They sure made the iPhone look lucrative though even though both phones again were useless. one that can edit and cut parts of the test video has the power to alter. this makes holes in the test, like how long were both phones actually in the water. If the iPhone was left floating in the pool for 2 minutes, i will guarantee that the battery and component would have fried and corroded. But they somehow show it again at an bias angle.

    The household products test, don’t even get me started… they carefully dropped even item flush and square on the iPhone 5 allowing the metal frame to take the impact. I love how the bottle lands uneven onto the middle of the screen while the iPhone flush against both metal supports of the screen.

    Clearly the Samsung product is interior with plastic and undoubted the 4.8″ screen is more fragile without a metal frame, but whats the point to this video? there are thousand of other similar cheap plastic Samsung phone that drop to the same fate. most are luck, and just pop in the battery and continue to go. more intelligently though the consumer can purchase an insurance plan to protect against this or even get a durable case. Does iPhone have a insurance option?

  • Wow this must of been a sponsored post. This Site is going down the wrong path. How is this tmobile related?

  • I highly doubt that an engineer was involved in setting up the methodology for the test, but the result of the beer bottle test (smashed the SGS III screen) while leaving the iPhone intact, may be more than anecdotal. If you have a SG S III – use a protective case and/or get insurance. If you drop it on a hard surface, the phone will likely break. IMO the S III is much more delicate than an iPhone. I just bought the Samung a few days ago, so trust me, I’m not trolling. I take good care of my gear, but can’t recommend this phone to everybody.