Apple Watch Scratch Test

The Apple Watch Sport, which will likely be far and away the most popular version of the Apple Watch, comes equipped with a different glass panel than the Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition models. While the latter two models ship with sapphire glass, which is known for its elemental hardness, the cheaper Sport models ship with something called Ion-X glass.

Ion-X glass is a panel stronger than typical glass—think Gorilla Glass levels here—but I don’t think anyone’s questioning the fact that it’s inferior in some ways to the sapphire glass gracing the more expensive models of the Apple Watch. So the question stands to be asked: how well will the Apple Watch Sport’s Ion-X glass stand up to wear and tear? How well will it stand up to outright deliberate abuse?

As noted by 9to5mac, Popular bearded YouTuber, Lewis Hilsenteger, better known around YouTube circles by his moniker Unbox Therapy, seeks to answer the question. If Hilsenteger seems familiar, it’s because he’s the same guy who brought us the infamous iPhone 6 #bendgate videos. Watch and see what happens when he puts the Ion-X glass under an extreme series of scratch tests.

Spoiler alert: Keys don’t affect the glass, and even knife doesn’t do any harm to the Ion-X glass. But what about steel wool and sandpaper? Hmm, watch the video and find out for yourself.

The good news is that most of these circumstances are extreme, and the Ion-X glass should hold up during regular usage. Even better is the fact that Ion-X glass is more flexible than sapphire, so in theory, while the Apple Watch Sport may be more prone to scratches than the Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition, it may be less prone to shattering on impact.

What do you think? Does this scratch test change your opinion about the Apple Watch Sport?

  • Tyler Smith

    I wasn’t at all surprised by the same paper. it looked like it was 120 grit and 60 grit so it doesn’t surprise me one bit that it tore up the screen

  • smtp25

    screen is fine but will we get scuff-gate like on the iphones where the space grey was wearing off or chipping

  • Alberto Espinal

    The D from Unbox Therapy, he doesn’t have a forehead he has a fivehead, if he was in the army he had to salute way back there!!

  • Cole Mahoney

    Siri is not working on iPad or iPhone on iOS 8.4. She says no internet connection when I am connected to the Internet. Any one else with this problem?

    • Merman123

      So relevant bro.

      • Cole Mahoney

        Gland I’m not the only one. Must be a software bug hopefully fixed in beta 2.

      • Elias Chao

        Do you even sarcasm, bro?

    • CltrAltDelicious


  • Chindavon

    Looks like I need to stop wearing sandpaper next to my watch.

    • Dhoklastellar Fafda®™

      Looks like you need an apple watch case bro

  • Dhoklastellar Fafda®™

    Can anyone help me? I’ve been looking around for an otter case for my apple watch to entomb in. Dayummmm otter case is out of stock everywhere. You guys know that scratches should never touch no Apple product right? And just where the fukkkkk is a strengthened 5mm thick glass screen protector for my apple watch?

  • Linton Findlay

    Don’t see the point in scratch tests on a watch, you don’t keep your watch in your pocket with keys ect. I’d like to see a knock test against corners and various materials

  • Tim

    Why do scratch testers always forget how a knife works? Sliding it side to side? You have to cut the screen, like a knife is supposed to work. 😛

  • ML

    Thx for this article! Of topic: does anybody know where to find that nifty pocket knife in the articles picture? Thx! ↴

  • quitcherbichinn

    Utterly shocking! You mean sandpaper scratches glass? NO WAY! Say it isn’t so! *eye roll*

  • Gary LE

    Dude i can guarantee you that my sport watch aint gonna get a scratch on it! Btw i wear long sleeve most of the time here in SF CALI so its pretty much covered up most of the time.

  • ML

    Oh my holy moly! Lot of “no way” then. But thx for the heads up!