If you own an LG V20, here’s a frightful pattern you’ll want to watch for that dual-camera head unit. Perhaps you might even consider getting a case for it. Perhaps that’ll be a futile move.
There have been multiple reports of the glass on the head unit either cracking or shattering and usually because of minuscule impact activities such as scratching the surface or even setting the phone down. A post on the LG V20 subreddit has logged seven incidents including an initial crack from JerryRigEverything.
The six other reports have all been over complete shatters from either leaving the flashlight on for more than 30 minutes, lightly dropping the phone in, of all things, an Otterbox case and placing the phone on a desk. Since LG isn’t regarding this as a warranty issue, — not for the moment, at least — customers have had to go back to their carriers to be cared for. Some had to pay up for a replacement while at least one moved to a different phone.
It’s a fairly common problem in the smartphone world to see the glass on top of the camera crack up. The Pixel is susceptible. The Nexus 6P is susceptible. Even the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge are susceptible. But having a group of these bang-ups come from the gate for the V20 is simply not good news, especially not in the current environment where Samsung botched its handling of the Note 7 debacle and where LG cannot afford to drop its sales momentum after a lousy half-year with the G5. A second crisis of trust in 2016 is not needed.
One possibility brought up in the thread is that the parts supplier skimped on the glass annealing process for these units. To simplify annealing, it’s basically heating the glass in its final form to temperatures just warm enough for the molecules to move and relieve stresses acquired during the previous processes with the result being a harder final product. A poor job here does mean harder glass, but it can become more fractious, too.
If you have a V20, hold off on freaking out just yet — these units could be just part of a bad batch or LG could announce that it will do the right thing if you come across the problem. Another piece of advice? Don’t take off that plastic protector on those camera lenses.