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Our first Galaxy S8 smashed after just five days: How to avoid the same fate

It's pretty much the worst nightmare of any new phone owner. Just days after you've picked up your shiny new, expensive, state-of-the-art handset, it slides/slips/drops/pinwheels/fumbles its way out of your hands, out of your pocket, off some surface and onto the floor. You look on, dismayed, distraught, in disbelief — grief and terror gripping you as you see the telltale spider-leg pattern in the glass.

RIP new phone.

That's what happened to Windows Central contributor Matt Brown just five days into his Galaxy S8+ ownership experience. Here's what happened, how it might've been avoided, and what your options are should you become as unlucky as Matt. Behold, our first smashed Samsung Galaxy S8, the victim of a drop off a three-foot wall.

Alex Dobie
Alex Dobie

Alex was with Android Central for over a decade, producing written and video content for the site, and served as global Executive Editor from 2016 to 2022.

73 Comments
  • "(R)est (I)n (P)eace in peace new phone" ... Someone must not know RIP actually stands for something?
  • Actually that's a new thing people are doing, whether it was intentional here or not, is the question...
  • Actually, RIP means "requiescat in pace". It's latin, and not English. "rest in peace" is just the translation not the acronym.
  • *double post*
  • Well where I'm from (usa) we use English. Growing up RIP was rest in peace so that's how people use it around here. I don't think people are interested in the Latin word or the origin. Words don't mean anything only the meaning behind them. I can cuss someone out in a language they don't understand and they won't have any issue with it because they don't know what it means. It doesn't have any impact or relevance in their lives especially when you're speaking and not writing. Basically it's just a sound or a noise when speaking a foreign language to someone. So bringing up a Latin word to a English speaking person don't really hold any weight. Unless they're trying to get a deeper understanding of maybe a wrong Bible translation or what not.
  • Ok, so let's try to put this way. "Stands for" is not the same as "Means". When you say Stands for, you have to take the origin/etimology into consideration. Otherwise, a Italian speaker can say. "No, you're wrong, RIP stands for riposare in pace.". What a mess, right? They taught you wrong. It doesn't mean you can't still learn.
  • I never bother to comment on articles generally, but I just had to jump in and say - Joel, you're a hero, and KingJMG, this is the greatest overreaction I've ever seen to someone's scrupulously polite correction/factoid. R U OK hun?
  • actually in this case it means rest in pieces!
  • Learn something new every day, thanks. I never knew that.
  • Rip in peace is an "internet thing" - often encountered on reddit and being seen in more and more places.
  • Rest In Pieces?
  • haha, great! :D
  • According to the great Grammatical Philosopher Joel Fabiani I have to say this is ruining French!
  • Same thing happened to me this morning. I rest mine on my desk on a piece of paper, but there was a penny under the paper. Mine slid off after about a minute. Luckily it fell on the carpet
  • Did he have a case on it, tho?
  • Yeah, I was using a Samsung Clear Case - not the most protective case available though, so I'm still to blame :P
  • Switched from the s8Plus to the LG G6 a few days ago and I feel like I've lost that 'phone drop anxiety' that was hanging over me thankfully. My s7 edge slid off the car seat last year onto a rubber floor mat and cracked up the entire edge screen from bottom to top and I was constantly dreading the same with the s8 Plus even with a Spigen Liquid Air case on it. The edges are just too exposed and vulnerable. I liked the phone but don't miss my heart stopping everytime it slipped or fell. How people can use them naked and not worry is beyond me
  • Yeah, take the case off your G6, drop it on concrete and see what happens. I do like how much sturdier LG made the phone, but for me, dropping this thing still gives me anxiety! #glasshouses
  • That's my point though. Even with a case on the s8 is still too vulnerable as the sides can't be protected in the same way as a flat phone. But yeah the G6 without a case is likely to smash if you drop it onto concrete. That's why the case ain't coming off lol #glassphones
  • A case with raised corners and a lip on both ends should protect the edges.
  • All cases build for the edge phones leave the edges exposed.
  • Wow, seriously? I know the S7 Edge is fragile but that's outrageous. I think I'm going to put mine in an Otterbox Defender. Who needs to use the touchscreen anyway, right?
  • I own an s7 with a defender and you know what i do with the annoying plastic screen cover? Punch it out and put a screen protector on the glass and put the otterbox back on works way better yes its a beautiful phone but my gf walks around with a case thinner than my daughters jelly shoes and i cringe
  • A phone of this caliber just shouldn't be that fragile. I remember when the S5 launched someone ran over one with a garbage truck and it still worked. Minor damage only. Proof that high impact plastic is the best material to construct phones.
  • Remember all the crying about cheap plastic? Yeah, cheap plastic is better, it's cheap, antenna friendly and more scratch resistant than glass. But they're giving what asked right? All glass phone can crack after fall, it's a lottery. Some minor drops sometimes cracks, some high drops lets you thinking how it didn't broke.
  • +1 on that ..just moved off the S5 3 years old into a used V20 ..trying to bypass the curved screens. Apple and Google are adopting curved screen also in the new flagships .. planned obsolescence.. RIP flat screens, RIP removable batteries, RIP USB 3.0 charge port .. RIP all phone features that make it last longer Kenny
  • Doesn't matter, they can be made of Gorilla glass 200, and it's still garbage, I have zero sympathy for people who risk an 850 dollar phone so they can show off how sexy it looks, nobody cares about your phone, it is funny as hell though to watch someone drop theirs and a dozen people bend over to pick up the pieces
  • Rumour has it Samsung didn't include Double Tap to Wake on the s8 in case you shatter the screen with your finger
  • Good one.
  • That's avery dumb rumour.
  • You can pretend you are a teenager with an iPhone and the cracked screen they all have on their phones. +1 for cases on phones.
  • The thinner and lighter they make these phones... the more vulnerable they become and the stronger case and ballistic glass that are needed. Just make the phones a little thicker, and stronger to begin with! And put in a larger battery while they're at it
  • Glass phones look nice, but I refuse to purchase one ever again after a previous terrible and costly experience. I don't want to carry around Cinderella's big glass slipper.
  • I could not have said it any better myself.
  • Exactly my thoughts!
  • Exactly the reason why I'm not buying an Edge phone, again. The phone is beautiful, but the break-points are too accessible when you use any case that's not completely encapsulating the phone. RIP my S7-Edge that fell 2 inches onto the tile floor and resulted in a cracked-screen.
  • With or without edges, without a good case, there will always the possibility do shatter your screen. And if you're going to use a case anyway, doesn't make much difference, does it? Obviously, naked, yes... edge phones can shatter easily.
  • I think you missed his point. Even with cases the edge phones remain a high risk to have a broken screen (moreso than flat screen phones). I can attest to that as well. Broken screen on an S7 Edge when dropped eventhough it was in a case. And even with insurance I paid a hefty amount to get it repaired ($175 deductible).
  • Premium looks and feel! No case needed! No screen protector needed! Insurance is a waste of money! The forums around here are filled with these silly statements.
  • I've had my s6 edge since release and have dropped it from 7 feet up. No case. No scuffs, scratches or cracks. I don't know what these people are doing to destroy their phones like this...
  • Almost every phone I've bought I always put a tempered glass/protective case i know how nice the phone looks but if i'm going to spend that much money on a device I rather protect it. I know it'll make my phone thicker however, I rather not go through that hassle of replacing a damaged glass when i know it's going to cost me premium. In the end if I resale there's value to the mint condition phone :)
  • RIP and sorry to hear about your phone. I bought a Kyocera Duraforce Pro phone because it's a rugged phone and if dropped doesn't break easily.
  • This is why I hate all the glass on new phones now.
  • Do Samsung and other OEM's gain from a higher number of smashes with glass. IDK. Phones need to be fairly drop proof first, IP68 certified second.
    Supply it with a durable case in the box.
    Don't rely on users choosing a case based on price and aesthetics.
    Some never get around to fitting tempered glass in case it's a bubbly mess. This is a negative on the S8, though most users will survive alright. Bring back the lanyard hole.
  • Try using a ballistic case
  • With examples like this I just don't understand why Motorola's shatter proof displays don't catch on. You would think companies would be really be pushing that type of display. Form over function I guess, or just too much revenue from repairs to give up.
  • Because it was a Verizon exclusive phone? Maybe also because a broken screen is a negative in the consumer's eyes but not in the manufacturer's ($$$$$).
  • Gorilla Glass is crap.
  • What's your alternative? Unfortunately, scratch resistance means brittleness, and impact resistance means a softer, more easily scratched surface... Can't change the laws of physics. Although a softer, impact resistant screen with a hard replaceable screen protector could be a good middle ground... Problem is a lot of people wouldn't bother to replace it after removing it... And it doesn't really work with the way this phones screen is.
  • There isn't one, of course. But it's what, 5th generation glass, and phones are still easily shattered and scratched. I've seen it scratch easily as well. Maybe Gorilla Glass needs some healthy competition.
  • I did it, 3 days! My car rides low to the ground, pulled into parking lot. Finishing up a call, phone laying on my lap I felt a small breeze gazed over to late, parking lot. I dropped the S5 no damage plus it was laying in a mini water fall, think 20 or 25 mins. Worked perfectly with it's plastic backing, I digressed. Bottom half of the phone smashed!😢 I can't find anyone to fix as of yet, nobody has the glass..
  • Lots of money to be made in replacement screens and backsides.
  • Wow... that is painful! I have the Spigen NeoFlex screen protector on my s8 + the Spigen clear case, but needless to say, after seeing this, that isn't going to be enough. The corners are the issue with the phone. I am now thinking of getting one of the folio cases. I tried one of the "glass" screen protectors and it was completely useless. The gap between the screen and the protector was such that your swipe movements did nothing. As beautiful as the phone is, and as much as I would like to show it off in a minimal clear case ... I think to error on the safe side has it merits... so a folio case it is. My 18 year old is switching from an iPhone to the s8 and he to will be getting a folio case!
  • I hate to say it, but I feel that phones today are made to break. There are a lot of business out there that prosper off the fear of our fragile, and repair of our broken phones. Take the company Spigen, estimated revenue of 14mil. You don't get to make that kind of money off an unbreakable shatter proof phone.
  • I don't know, don't buy it? lol
  • Just goes to show what JUNK Samsung is putting out these days. Curved glass on front and back is a totally stupid and useless "feature"!!!
    Shatter proof screens are plastic and scratch/mar easily so you need a tempered glass screen protector on top to make it feel like a standard glass screen. Works great!
  • Still think the note4 had the best design. Metal edges with a nice look/feel leather grain plastic back. Could replace the battery easily. Now I have a s8 and really like using it, but I don't like the all glass design. Fingerprint magnet. Also, I'm very fearful of cracking it. I've never cracked a screen yet so hopefully I don't start now. I had a spigen neo hybrid case on it at first but returned it since I had no faith in it drop protecting my phone due to the exposed edges. Now I have a nice heavy duty case on it that actually protects the edges with a raised lip on the sides.
  • The Note 4 was the best phone Samsung ever made. This all glass curved glass nonsense is just that nonsense, nothing more than marketing gimmicks that the masses will eat up, hook line and sinker, then realize that what they bought is a $900 device the is as fragile as an egg, it's comical with some of the posts in here, this thing is more fragile than a new born baby.
  • I agree
  • That's why I like phones with a little bit of bezel.
  • Better headline: Dude leaves his glass phone on a ledge. You won't believe what happens next (except you totally do)
  • Hold your phone like it's an $800 device, and you don't have this problem. The last screen I cracked on a phone was the HTC Evo back in 2010, while jogging without a case. Just take extra care when holding your phone, don't be clumsy, and be aware where you sit it on an elevated surface (i. e. Don't sit your phone near the edge of an elevated surface, like a table).
  • Exactly
  • I said the same thing....and did the same thing, until my 1020 fell out of my pocket shattering the screen. Had a case and was super careful. Good thing is that the screen was 160 bucks, and they are super easy to fix on the 1020.
  • Good thing I picked up a crazy case for this thing, now just to keep the ex girlfriend from throwing it...
  • Mine cracked after 3 days, slipping off a desk. I was quoted $450 for a new screen by a local phone repair shop. That would make a $1200 phone. I guess I'll keep paying for my cracked one for two years instead.
  • Glass back smartphonea are the stupidest design decision I have ever seen. Period.
  • yep
  • Mine fell off a picnic table onto hard dirt and cracked in the bottom left and top right corner on my 5th day too. I had ordered a sturdy case from Amazon but it wasn't going to be in stock yet and came a couple of days later. 😑
  • Dropped my s7 edge with minimalistic case several times now indoors and outdoors in rough terrain and not even a scratch or crack anywhere on the phone. Case looks good still too.
  • I'm a farmer but still, despite all the NEON signs shouting don't, I'll be picking up my S8+ a little later on today. I remember reading days ago, that there may be a tougher version of S8 released but it didn't say when. DOES anyone have info on this please?
  • AT&T tends to offer an "Active" version of the Galaxy S phone after the regular one is introduced. Look for Galaxy S 7 Active.
  • Same here! However, mine wasn't the front glass, it's the back plastic. I'm surprised how fragile it is! Of all my smart phones, this is the first time I've ever had the back cover crack.