Is There a Waterproof Phone?
Perhaps it’s inevitable that at some point most mobile phone users will have cause to think about how their phone might stand up to being splashed, dunked or even drowned in some form of liquid...generally water. Such concerns are generally apparent after the unfortunate encounter with the accidentally spilled drink or the calamitous fall down the toilet but are there phones that have are actually designed to withstand fluid altogether?
The short answer is no. Whilst there are no phones that manufacturers can claim are entirely waterproof there are some that offer better protection than others. The level of water resistance is actually measured on an industry scale called the ‘Ingress Protection Rating’ or IP for short. The system of classification is the one currently used by the International Electrotechnical Commission and phones are more than likely to possess such a rating. This scale also covers how well protected the device is from solid forms of incursion including dust and hands and fingers. Dust protection is measured from 0-6 and water resistance is measured from 0-9. The greater the number the more resistant the device so for example a phone with an IP rating of IP12 would not be considered particularly dust or waterproof.
One should also bear in mind that the second digit of the IP rating refers to (fresh) water resistant qualities and not to other liquids. So whilst many phones may be considered to have good water resistance properties (like those below) they may not stand up so well to being dropped in seawater or other kinds of liquid (such as tea or alcoholic drinks for example).
Many phones will also come with multiple IP ratings that indicate different specific resistances to water.
For example IP55 stipulates that the device is resistant to low pressure water jets from all directions as long as the ports on the phone are properly sealed. IP58 on the other hand, stipulates that the phone can be submerged in water up to a depth of 1.5 metres for approximately 30 minutes. N practice this means that a phone such as the Sony Xperia Z2 has carries IP55 and IP58 ratings as it satisfies both of those criteria. However, whilst the phone is designed to withstand such pressures it is not designed to operate fully under those conditions nor is it designed to float. People attempting to operate their phones under such conditions may find that their warranty is void. Similar issues with warranty may occur if the phone was subjected to deeper water and/or more significant pressure from jets of water.
Some of the more popular phones with water protection come from Sony and Samsung.
Samsung Galaxy S5 – this phone rated IP67 making it one of the most water and dust proof phones on the market.
Sony Xperia Z1 – This phone carries an IP58 and if you were wondering this indicates that it can be left in fairly deep water (1.5 metres) for about half an hour according to the manufacturer.
Check out the Xperia Z1 Compact
Perhaps the most popular series of phones without a certified system of water proofing are those of the IPhone. If you want to ensure that your model of IPhone is better protected against water (or dust) then you may have to invest in a protective casing. Make sure when you invest in such a product that you have checked the IP rating as these can apply to casings as much as to phones. Popular examples include those made by Overboard, Aquapac and Aryca to name just a few. Many of these cases are designed to allow prolongued submersion in water and will almost certainly do a good job of keeping the phone dry but check the phone specifications before attempting any dives to significant pressures!