Skip to main content

iPhone 12 Pro Max bests Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S21 Ultra in drop test [Video]

Apple upped the iPhone 12’s durability last year with a ceramic shield on top of what’s likely custom Gorilla Glass. It’s proven to be highly durable and now we’ve got a look at how Samsung’s latest flagship Galaxy S21 Ultra stacks up against the iPhone 12 Pro Max in a detailed drop test. Samsung’s latest couldn’t stand up to drops like the 12 Pro Max, and may even be less durable than its S20 Ultra predecessor.

PhoneBuff is out today with a detailed drop test of Samsung’s new Galaxy S21 Ultra vs the iPhone 12 Pro Max. While smartphone makers always hype up the durability claims, Apple has really delivered with the iPhone 12 lineup and the new ceramic shield in addition to really durable glass and a steel frame (for the Pro and Pro Max). Meanwhile, the Galaxy S21 Ultra uses Gorilla Glass Victus and an aluminum frame.

The test put both smartphones through a back, corner, and face drop. And then a bonus round of 10 more drops – 14 for the iPhone 12 Pro Max.

Both the 12 Pro Max and the S21 Ultra made it through the first two drops well but the S21 Ultra saw a shattered screen after the face drop while the 12 Pro Max went unscathed.

After the bonus round, more and more damage occurred on the Galaxy S21, with PhoneBuff noting even the back coating seems to scratch more than the S20. He mentioned it could have been just back luck on the S21 damage, but that it could also be the weight and the new design (rounded edges) compared to the S20 Ultra.

After the first three rounds plus 14 more drops, the iPhone 12 Pro Max had its screen fully intact with just minor scratch damage. PhoneBuff called it the “clear winner” and it remains the YouTuber’s smartphone drop test champion.

Meanwhile the Galaxy S21 Ultra was still working but had a shattered screen in multiple places and notable scratching on the back. Check out the full drop test below:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Mac — experts who break news about Apple and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Mac on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel



Avatar for Michael Potuck Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.