Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra's camera bump is randomly shattering for some users

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
(Image credit: Future)

Samsung's Galaxy S20 Ultra may be one of the South Korean manufacturer's most expensive phones to date, but it appears there could be a serious design flaw in the high-end handset, as reported by SamMobile.

Several S20 Ultra users have taken to the company's community forums to complain of randomly shattered glass in the flagship's huge camera bump, effectively rendering the phone's much-touted 108MP sensor and 100x 'Space Zoom' functionality worthless in the process.

According to the affected parties, seemingly nothing was done to cause the cracked glass, with one user stating the "back camera on s20 ultra [was] broken when I woke up" and that they "don't know how this has happened".

In this instance, the camera bump's damage is rather dramatic, appearing somewhat like a small bullet hole through the glass.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with damaged camera bump

(Image credit: Samsung Community Forums)

Responding to the above image, another S20 owner claims to have the same issue, stating "That is exactly what happened to my husband and mine," and that "Samsung refuses to take responsibility for the design flaw". 

The user goes on to speculate that "What I think is happening is there is some sort of a gas between the camera and the glass like in a dual pane window and it just blows out from the inside outward".

Another damaged S20 Ultra

(Image credit: SamMobile)

Another user in a different thread also complains of cracked glass on the S20 Ultra's camera bump, although the damage is less severe. "While in my packet [sic] the glass of the camera broke," said the user, describing the damage in this instance as being "like a hair line that goes from one side to another".

Warranty woes

Worryingly, Samsung is not covering the damage under warranty for the time being, with reports by those affected stating it will cost up to $400 for repairs, or $100 for those who are part of Samsung’s Premium Care plan.

A Samsung representative responded to one of the posts in its community forum with the following statement:

"We are sorry to hear about the crack on your camera lens. Unfortunately Samsung Phone warranties does not cover cosmetic damage. If you are enrolled in Samsung Premium Care, you can set up a repair at an authorized Samung Repair Center or Partners. Also does not hurt to check if you have insurance via your service provider. Going through an Authorized Samsung Repair Center or Partner (such as U Break I Fix) will guarantee fixing your phone with authentic OEM Samsung parts. They will also check for integrety and put your phone back into warranty condition. To check for local Authorized Repair Centers please refer to"

We have reached out to Samsung for an additional statement on the matter and are awaiting its response.

Stephen Lambrechts
Senior Journalist, Phones and Entertainment

Stephen primarily covers phones and entertainment for TechRadar's Australian team, and has written professionally across the categories of tech, film, television and gaming in both print and online for over a decade. He's obsessed with smartphones, televisions, consoles and gaming PCs, and has a deep-seated desire to consume all forms of media at the highest quality possible. 

He's also likely to talk a person’s ear off at the mere mention of Android, cats, retro sneaker releases, travelling and physical media, such as vinyl and boutique Blu-ray releases. Right now, he's most excited about QD-OLED technology, The Batman and Hellblade 2: Senua's Saga.