Water damage is the second most common cause of smartphone death. Whether these phones have gone through a washing machine cycle, taken an unexpected bubble bath, been the victim of a celebratory shower of champagne or, more mundanely, become wet as a result of rain, it is clear that water damage is costing smartphone owners millions of pounds each year.
Once you discount those cumbersome, inconvenient and unattractive plastic cases that – with varying degrees of success – represented the earliest attempts to waterproof phones, ‘splash-proofing’ was the first step in the evolution towards the waterproof smartphones that you can enjoy with TUFF Phones today. Unfortunately, these splashproof models, although useful to some consumers, offered little protection for those who needed something to provide reassurance in the wettest and most rugged of environments.
What consumers require, and what the early technology failed to provide, are phones that offer reliably sealed screens and ports as well as protection at even the deepest and most pressurised levels of submersion.
Of course, there are phones on the market which can be submerged, but only now do technology levels make them reliable and operable at extreme depths. For example, even the Galaxy S5, once a brand that was alien to the waterproof market, now comes with protection against immersion in depths up to 1m – helpful if you are a fly fisherman, a windsurfer, kitesurfer (or duck!).
But the Galaxy S5, like the Sony Xperia Z, is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to protection from water damage. More impressive are the specifications offered by phones such as the RugGear RG700, a handset with a more than adequate 5.3" multi-touch screen, Android 4.1.2, an 8MP camera and 1080p video, dual-sim capability, WiFi, Bluetooth LE, GPS, a 1GHz dual-processor, a 100dB speaker and, most importantly, US Military Standard 810G durability. This makes for the kind of phone that would have been unimaginable just a few years ago: one that offers a military standard level of water protection while also competing favourably with many leading smartphones on the market.
The RugGear RG700 is by no means the only trailblazer on the market; other phones, such as the CAT S40 and the Defender, are all embracing technologies that, over the coming few years, we can expect to become mainstream.
Although these phones, unlike some others have a more rugged look, it is clear that they are becoming attractive to the common consumer who is, we guess, sick and tired of dropping their phone down the loo.
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