HTC One X and HTC One (M8) camera lens comparison proves camera bumps save lenses' lives
Reddit user and apparent HTC fan MSined made an interesting comparison while busting a myth along the way. He posted two photos comparing how the camera lenses of his almost 2 year-old HTC One X and two-weeks old HTC One (M8) are holding up after this time. The result, as you will see for yourself, is surprising.
Smartphones that have their camera lens flush with the body were (unofficially) considered to do a better job at protecting the glass from scratches than those with “camera bumps” protruding from their backs. That's because in the latter case, the smartphone should lay directly on the lens itself and the glass will get scratched easier, right? Um, no. The difference between the two HTC flagships' camera lenses is drastic, and you'd never guess which one's in better shape. It's the veteran One X's! On the other hand, the brand-new One M8's lens is scratched severely.
The Redditor claims that he didn't treat the two phones differently, and admits that his usage habits are not a prime example of smartphone care-keeping. But it's not like he did anything especially irresponsible - it's just that MSined "isn't a case person". He also noted that the One X's photo clearly shows that it was the plastic ring below the lens that took the damage, instead of the lens, as evident by the scratch marks and discoloration.
While "camera bumps" are not a desirable aesthetic, it seems they do a much better job of protecting the camera than flush lens. The comparison also shows that flush lens and non-scratchproof glass is a bad, bad combination. Unfortunately, installing a camera protector isn't an option for those desiring the purest photo quality, while other smartphone vendors are yet to follow Apple's example of securing the lens with a piece of tough sapphire crystal in the iPhone 5 and 5S.
1. rizevnarastek (Posts: 330; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)
LOL... Puprusfuly scratched. The lens is recessed on the One and One M8 and is less likely to be scratched. This was intentionally scratched by a sharp object. If the scratches would happen naturally because of surface friction then there would be apparent scratches on the phones unibody as well and not just on the camera lens.
4. luis.d (Posts: 167; Member since: 04 Dec 2013)
Would someone scratch an M8 like that for the purpose of proving a point that gets discussed so rarely? I know, it's the Internet, but still?
10. bbblader (Posts: 580; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)
Doing it on purpose is the same as drop tests.Why not if you have the money
17. Commentator (Posts: 2436; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Because why would he?
Anyways, why don't companies just make the lens slightly recessed into the body of the phone? That way you eliminate the wobbling and scuffing of the rim, and the scratching of the lens, AND, if it makes the phone thicker, maybe they could fit a bigger battery to boot.
31. true1984 (Posts: 592; Member since: 23 May 2012)
it is recessed, thats why this is bull. i have th m8 with out a case and there isnt a single scratch on the lens
18. CanYouSeeTheLight (Posts: 860; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
Well, my One M7 has been with me for almost a year and not a single scratch on the camera lens, how this guy managed to scratch his camera lens like this is really strange..
20. Aploine (Posts: 195; Member since: 24 Oct 2013)
Why the aluminum body and the second lens are scratched?
19. Planterz (Posts: 892; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)
luis.d, you do realize that just a few stories down, somebody shoots a Galaxy S5 with a .50 caliber rifle, right?
I mean, have you seen the price of ammo lately? .50BMG ain't cheap!
22. luis.d (Posts: 167; Member since: 04 Dec 2013)
If it's a few stories down, you'd better call the police!
25. steedsofwar (Posts: 288; Member since: 07 Oct 2013)
Dont be silly. Of course he didn't do it on purpose. What point would he be making by doing that? IMO, they both look the same condition. Bulge is silly, and the cut out rings are enormous. Why? Look at the iPhone and the Sony cameras. Their cutout is only as big as needs be.
Also, I thought the LG G2 lens was a sapphire material. @luis D. Can you confirm?
2. Firedrops (Posts: 215; Member since: 06 Sep 2011)
well it makes sense since the outer edges of the "bump" and the other contact points actually prop the lens up from the surface when you lay it on something.
3. ianbbaa (Posts: 198; Member since: 20 Mar 2013)
Thats the top notch build quality that should bring those buyers to M8....
5. Reality_Check (Posts: 274; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)
What did he do? Take a key to the M8's camera? Or keep it in the same pocket in which you keep change? The scratches on the M8 are simply ridiculous -_-
6. promise7 (Posts: 469; Member since: 03 Jul 2013)
A whole article dedicated to this because one Reddit user said so? Wow... must be slim pickings today.
7. dexter_jdr (Posts: 1145; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)
i call BS. sliding the m8 on the floor will not scratch the lens because it will not touch the floor by a millimeter or so.
unless htc made the protective lens quality with cheap materials, then blame htc and not the owner.
8. Hyperreal (Posts: 130; Member since: 08 Oct 2013)
For me its BS. I had both htc one x and htc one. Lens on htc one x were scratched after 2 months (and that was the only complaint about the phone I had) and on htc one they still look perfect after months.
12. spiderpig2894 (Posts: 433; Member since: 10 Jan 2012)
Scratches like that would clearly also affect the metal edges of the lens. Scratches will run from the lens to the aluminum. This looks like it's scratched on purpose. Recessed is better than bumps IMO.
14. Eclectech (Posts: 73; Member since: 01 May 2013)
I find it odd the lens is scratched on the HTC One M8 and not the metal around it. I think this is total BS. I have had the HTC One M7 since launch last year and still has no scratches on the lens.
15. vincelongman (Posts: 1314; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)
And that's why OEMs should use Sapphire/Gorilla/Dragontrail Glass to protect the camera len
Unfortunately, I think only Apple & LG are using Sapphire, haven't heard of any using Gorilla/Dragontrail
Luckily my glass screen protector came with a protector for the camera as well
16. AfterShock (Posts: 2812; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)
I've two OneXs, neither in rough shape or even scratched.
To scratch the M8 can glass like that, I suspect it got scratched by sand abusively.
Like how old is phone?
24. fireblade (Posts: 708; Member since: 27 Dec 2013)
WTF, how can that happen? the bumped one is supposed to get more scratch! HTC should replace it with sapphire glass
27. Karriope (Posts: 95; Member since: 07 Jun 2013)
Id always prefer a recessed camera lens. Ive barely any scratches on my phones with recessed lenses. I really dont get the mentality of having camera glass (or plastic) sitting on surfaces...
As for why the metal body and depth oens aren't scratched?
Isn't that depth lens recessed?
Really, there are lots of little design touches that can exist to better protect the fragile parts of a phone. One is a raised front bezel, avoiding curved corners of glass (look at how easy S3s cracked their screens) and obviously a recessed camera. This whole thinness fad isnt my style anyhow.
28. Karriope (Posts: 95; Member since: 07 Jun 2013)
A -flush- lens is definitely prone to scratching, a recessed one is not. The One is particularly bad due to its curved back (so the flat lens will be the widest surface resting on the surface, plus it rocks back and forth) but the One X sits on the lower end of the back plus the edge of the hump surround.
I've personally handled both phones, so ... no, not just saying. (Well, a M7, not a M8, but they're so similar in shape anyway)
32. chaosmonk (Posts: 1; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)
Derp. Did any of you who are saying "How could this happen!?" think that maybe he could have put the phone in a pocket with his keys?
33. Taters (Posts: 3260; Member since: 28 Jan 2013)
Typical suck T C fan reaching hard to justify the horrible design decisions of HTC when designing the One X.
The funny thing is that plastic ring around the camera lens, began to develop a gap and pop out after a few days of use and I baby the crap out of my phones. Typical HTC garbage.
34. CanYouSeeTheLight (Posts: 860; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
Funny i owned a One X for a year and didn't get any scratch nor did anything popped out, and it took a bath and sustained no damage.
35. winter_hat (Posts: 106; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)
It's a film on the lens. Not a piece of plastic you can peel off, but some sort of coating. No clue what it's doing there but you have to rub it off. I used a nylon and just get buffing and buffing. You will see it get 'more' scratched, but that actually you making progress getting it OFF. Mine is clear now. Try it. Some others have used Mr Clean magic eraser.
You might be able to speed up the process with chemicals as some have suggested, but I just used one of my wife's nylon stockings and some time.
As for why some have the problem and others don't, all I can think is that the average users lens got buffed before assembly, and ours, with the problem, did not.