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Cracked iPhone 4Brace yourselves for the “I told you so” response from critics of the iPhone 4’s glass back. Users are reporting 82 percent more screen breakage with the iPhone 4 than the iPhone 3G S, according to a study by device warranty firm SquareTrade.

The company looked at accident data for over 20,000 iPhone 4s, which is a decent enough sample to track potential trends. Overall, Square Trade notes that the reported accident rate for the iPhone 4 was 68 percent higher than with the 3G S. The firm predicts that around 15.5 percent of iPhone 4 owners will have an accident in their first year of ownership.

SquareTrade writes:

4.7% of iPhone 4 owners reported an accident to SquareTrade in the first 4 months of ownership, almost 70% higher than iPhone 3gs owners, 2.8% of whom had an accident over the same time period.

Screen issues accounted for “more than four-fifths” of iPhone 4 accidents, the firm said. It found that 3.9 percent of iPhone 4 owners cracked their screens in the first four months, compared to just 2.1 percent of iPhone 3G S owners.

SquareTrade wasn’t able to confirm the “GlassGate” problem — which refers to debris getting stuck between slide-on iPhone 4 cases and the device’s rear, eventually leading to cracking and other damage on its glass back. But it does report that at least a quarter of broken glass claims involved the back screen (although most of those probably come from dropped phones).

The firm predicts that the iPhone 4’s accident rate will climb to 15.5 percent after a year, almost double the 3G S’s 7.8 percent accident rate for the same amount of time. In terms of non-accident claims, SquareTrade found that the iPhone 4 matched the 3G S with around 0.5 percent of reports.

The big takeaway from this study is that the iPhone 4 definitely seems more prone to damage than the 3G S. It also shows that Apple’s new aluminosilicate glass isn’t offering much more protection than previous models.

Image via Gizmodo

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