It’s now been three days since the release of the Pixel and Pixel XL (from herewith to be known collectively as Pixels) and a lot more people have them, including myself. I have not succumbed to treating it with anything other than kid gloves just yet and suspect I never will, especially after forking out a small fortune for one. Some though, like to torture. There is always the random site that blends a device or conducts drop tests and water submersion tests and in the end the device is destroyed beyond all belief. Yes, they have already popped up for the Pixels.

How does it go in water, then?

The Pixels’ waterproof rating (IP53) is such that if it is foggy it will get water in it — well, nearly. Often water-proofing is due to the manufacturer not bothering to get the certifications but still maintains some form of water resistance/proofing. One Pixel owner put it to the test with various forms of water torture. One such test was submerging the Pixel inside a bowl of water for 30 minutes and surprisingly it survived without missing a single beat. He recommends to, if you do drop your phone in a bowl of water, still power your phone off and put it in a bowl of rice or some other compound that will absorb the moisture from the phone before using it. See below for the video:

What about a drop test?

Let’s not stop there with the painful torture of the Pixels (painful for me anyway). TechRax performed a drop test on a blue Pixel. In the process of getting ready to perform the test it slipped and fell from a height of zero centimetres and fell onto its back, cracking the glass at the top of the back. Not a good start. Following on from this a drop test from chest height onto it’s side/corner was performed and surprisingly, except for a small mark on the corner no further damage at all was sustained by the Pixel. The front drop test (Pixel dropped from chest height onto it’s display) resulted in a totally destroyed display. It was slightly shattered but did not work at all. Sounds like a good reason to use a case — I was thinking of having my Pixel XL go commando but am now rethinking that decision. See the video below:

WARNING: The following content may be distressing to some readers/viewers. Proceed with caution.

Not enough? What about scratching and immolation?

Finally, and perhaps the most painful was the YouTuber who attempted to scratch, band and even burn the poor Pixel. I was cringing the whole time as JerryRigEverything firstly scratched the Gorilla Glass 4 display with a special tool, then attempted to scratch other various areas of the phone including the earpiece, the back glass and camera, and the aluminium back case. Oh the humanity! He says he is liking the phone more and more but yet continues to destroy a perfectly good blue Pixel with naked flame onto the display. The Pixel fought back in the bend test, not succumbing to his attempts to turn it into a blue banana. All in all the result was good for the Pixel with it scratching at times when expected to and not before and not bending under fairly extreme stress. It may not have survived the naked flame but let’s be honest, if a naked flame manages to reach your phone your phone would be the least of your worries.

WARNING: The following content may be distressing to some readers/viewers. It contains scenes of phone torture. Proceed with caution.

Now that I’ve tortured myself by watching others torture the best ever Android device you can too. Does it make you feel a bit safer with your Pixel or will you still wrap it up in a thick case? And to all the Pixels in the above videos, RIP.

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Mike R

I had two HTC phones back in 2012. Both had issues with guess what?
Sub-par glass.

It is apparently continues to be an issue for HTC as they’re still using insufficiently thin cuts of Gorilla Glass for their screens.

Despite the advertising, make no mistake. HTC made these phones.


The water proofing was suprisingly positive, and the fragility was suprisingly negative. So you can drop it in the pool ok, just don’t let it hit the pavers on the way down.


I’ll pass, I don’t get off on phone torture porn.


Glad panel on the back I think is a deal breaker for me. Ever since Nexus 4, I’ve sworn “never again”. And this test certainly doesn’t change my mind. (Though: can you get a protective bedecked glass panel like for the screen?)


I haven’t seen tempered glass screen protector for the back… i’d be surprised if someone didnt make one eventually though


You’re right, that was pretty distressing to watch!!

Dennis Bareis

Seems pretty good, the glass breaking at the back for a small drop is either bad luck or a fault in that phone, either can cause one phone to break and another survive.

I’ll take more notice of these tests when they start buying and testing 10 phones from different batches and sources and test all 10.


that sounds like an expensive experiment :/

Dennis Bareis

Which is why no one does it and why these results are relatively meaningless.