Nearly one in 10 Brits 'fess to shower phone faux pas
And other daft ways to destroy a mobile
MWC 2012 Promoting its waterproofing spray, Oxford-based P2i has polled punters on the soggy environments to which their phones are exposed and expectations on their survival.
Three per cent of the thousand respondents regularly share a sauna with their phone, and expect it to work afterwards, but it's the eight per cent who take a handset into the shower who seem to be taking the piss - possessing cavernous bathrooms or enormous optimism, or a bit of both.
88 per cent of us take a phone to the pub (we're assuming the rest don't get out much), but despite that alcohol accounts for only just over eight per cent of liquid-related incidents.
That's in the UK - Americans seem more slap-handed with their drinks, which account for 12 per cent of reported incidents, or perhaps the American preference for inherently unstable bottles is to blame.
P2i's point is that users like to be able to take their phones everywhere, and are genuinely surprised when they're told that a single drop of rain (in the right place) can render their pride and joy into an astoundingly expensive door wedge.
P2i happens to have the perfect solution for manufacturers wanting to meet those needs. Motorola Mobility has been an early customer, with both the Droid RAZR and Xoom tablet sporting the biz's coating, making them splash-proof if not actually submersible.
Waterproof gadgets have always been around, initially funded by the military which has the budget to demand electronics at least as robust as the chap holding them. P2i's coating was developed by the UK Ministry of Defence, then taken private when the potential was realised.
Digital cameras and MP3 players are now routinely waterproof, and mobile phones are catching up. Companies like Sonim will continue to make kit certified to work at depth, but most of us would be happy to know our phones will survive a spilled pint or a rainy-day call. ®
I took a Samsung A300 swimming once.
Ironicly I could even see water in the "porthole" display on the front by the time I realised my mistake. Made a nasty zapping noise when I plugged it in later too.
I dismantled it and left it in the Croatian sunshine to dry, reassembled and everything was fine. The geeky satisfaction one gets from taking a set of miniature screwdrivers on holiday is as nothing compared to the really smug geeky satisfaction one gets from needing them......
So I arrive home to a disgruntled SWMBO whose phone was no longer working properly. "Did you drop it or anything?" I asked. "No nothing just stopped working." She replied in all innocence. Engage geek mode - rebooting, removing battery, restore to factory settings... the usual couple of hours of wasted time and frustration. The smart phone still acted as if it had a mind of it's own.
"So when did it start acting up?" I queried after another reboot into random behaviour.
"When I was in the bath." She said.
It's then I decided to sit her down and have "the talk" - where I explain that water and electircal devices are not friends.
They are mobile!
People in the office who leave their phones on their desks and then walk off drive me potty. The thing rings and rings and their is no one to answer it. I'm always tempted to dunk their phone into their tea for them.
How many phones get killed because of fed up office colleges?