RIM, like any other hardware manufacturer, puts its devices through some abuse before they hit the market. Here is an Example of how these devices are put through punishment. Having used many of RIM’s devices, including ones that were only prototypes, I can say that they are durable. I’ve dropped my Bold 9900 on concrete, tile and even into mud and dirt. It sat in my pocket, along side keys and change. Since I didn’t own the device directly, its cosmetic welfare did not matter to me. So, I treated it as such. When it was time to return the device, it did not have any scratches or blemishes on it.
In comparison to my old Samsung Galaxy (which was dropped on many occasions), it is much more durable.