iPhone Survives 13 Months in the Wilderness After Falling From Airplane in Iceland

If you’re one of those people who is always worried about dropping your phone and having it break into a million pieces, perhaps you should consider upgrading to an iPhone 6S Plus. Yes, that particular model of phone is now 4+ years old, but apparently it has an incredibly high level of durability. According to a recent story at The Next Web, one such iPhone not only survived the fall from an airplane, it also sat in the wilderness in Iceland for more than a year, and yet when it was found it continued function as normal.

As the story goes, photographer Haukur Snorrason was taking a photo tour of the Skaftá river in South Iceland during the annual river flood that occur due to the glacial melt off. At one point, he went to grab his iPhone to shoot some video of the flooding when the large device was caught by a gust of wind and sent sailing out the window on the aircraft. The device fell at least 60 meters (196 feet) onto rocky terrain below, leaving Snorrason devastated that he had not only lost his mobile device, but the photos and videos saved on it too.

By the end of the flight, the professional photographer had pretty much written off the phone. After all, how would he find it in that vast wilderness? Imagine his surprise when 13 months later he received a phone call from a group of hikers who had found the iPhone while out on a trek. Better yet, the phone still worked and it contained all of the photos and videos, including the one that it was shooting when it fell from Snorrason’s hands. The Next Web has posted that video in the article linked above if you want to see it.

“Luckily the phone landed on a patch of moss that grows here and there in the lava field,” Haukur says. “The moss in this area is rather thick, can be up to 30 cm, so that’s the main reason it survived the fall I think. That was on August 4 2018. Then on September 14, 2019, a couple of Icelandic people were walking in the area and saw the phone just lying there. They contacted the land owners and realized it was my iPhone when they connected it to the computer and it said : Haukur´s iPhone,” Haukur goes on to add.

Snorrason says that the phone is pretty much in working order, except for its microphone. When he makes phone calls the person on the other end isn’t able to hear him. But, it seems the iPhone is in working order otherwise and the screen isn’t even cracked. That’s pretty surprising considering the fact that most smartphone screens will shatter from a seemingly innocuous fall from less than a meter up.

It seems the iPhone 6S Plus was built like a tank and was more durable than we thought. But if you’re looking for a newer model with updated tech that is reportedly extremely durable, consider the iPhone 11 instead. It is getting very high marks for its ability to withstand punishment.


Kraig Becker