Walt Mossberg

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A Scuffed iPhone 5

Q:

I bought an iPhone 5 and found, when I opened the box, some scuff marks. I read that Apple says this is “normal” wear and tear for aluminum devices. Is that true?

A:

There have been many reports of small nicks or scuffs on iPhone 5s, especially around the beveled aluminum border. When I wrote my review of the phone, the black evaluation unit Apple sent me didn’t display any such nicks over roughly a week, even though I wasn’t using a case and took no special care of it. But this unit, which hasn’t been dropped or banged, now has one tiny nick. I can’t say if it’s “normal” for aluminum devices made this way to develop these flaws over time. But if I found them in a new, out of the box device I’d return it.

Q:

I updated to the new iOS 6 operating system on my iPhone 4 and am not happy with it. Is there any way to go back to the previous iOS?

A:

Apple has never, to my memory, supported such operating system downgrades, and thus doing so is very difficult for average users. Some techies have figured out how to do it, but the instructions are dense, require some technical knowledge, and carry some risk. You can find various methods by searching online for “downgrade from iOS 6.” Here’s one example of what you might find, from the site MacLife.com: http://bit.ly/NZ5CGZ. I haven’t tried this, or any other such method, and can’t say if they work properly.

Write to Walt at walt.mossberg@wsj.com.


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