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As a consumer, to what extent do you value IP-certified, water- and dust-resistance in smartphones and tablets?

Posted: , by Chris P.

As a consumer, to what extent do you value IP-certified, water- and dust-resistance in smartphones and tablets?
Does anyone else get the feeling that IP-certifications that ensure a given level of water- and dust-resistance have, not at all surprisingly at this point, turned into something of a yet another sales pitch? Even without you telling us, it seems safe to assume that there'll be a split in opinions.

Frankly, even we, at PhoneArena, are split when it comes to waterproofed hardware. It definitely sounds like an awesome perk at first, but if often feels like that's about it, as the scenarios in which we've actually benefited from the added security frankly boil down to... well, about zero. Showering while playing with your smartphone, after all, just seems odd. What's more, IP certification does not come free. Apart from adding to manufacturing costs, water- and dust-proofed smartphones and tablets are also usually larger and thicker, and often sport clumsy port flaps that ensure an airtight compartment. So there's definitely a trade-off of sorts involved.

But is that trade-off warranted? You tell us! What's more, once you cast your vote, do consider chiming in via the comment section below -- we're genuinely interested to hear about your experiences with waterproofed hardware, both positive and negative.

Phonearena polls
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As a consumer, to what extent do you value IP-certified, water- and dust-resistance in smartphones
IP certification is a massive plus for me 47.71% (1085 votes) (1085 votes)
IP certification is a nice extra, but nothing beyond that 43.36% (986 votes) (986 votes)
I'd much prefer a more practical outlet for the money I spend. I find IP certification virtually useless. 8.93% (203 votes) (203 votes)

2274 votes

  • Options

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 04:51 8

1. carlemillward (unregistered)

This should be a standard on all flagships, and the mini's should have the same specs other than the screen. They should be able to even with the less space, look at Sony. Hopefully HTC butterfly is, and released globally.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 04:56

2. Chris.P (Posts: 567; Member since: 27 Jun 2013)

Why ?

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:34 9

15. HansGoneInsane (unregistered)

Because I just don't want to worry about my expensive smartphone. I want to know that it can accompany me in nearly all situations. Even though I won't need that IP certification in most situations, I want to know that I have it when I need it.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 20:36

59. InspectorGadget80 (unregistered)

Z1 Z2 Z1s ZR sony problem solve. all waterproof phones

posted on 08 Jun 2014, 07:53

61. zacsaturday (Posts: 242; Member since: 09 May 2014)

But you can't remove the battery, the galaxy series (s4 active and s5) is the lone wolf in that aspect

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 10:00 3

42. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

The very notion of a flagship is a platform that has the best offering of technological capabilities by the manufacturer. Best SoC, RAM, display technology, camera sensor, and, and, and. IP certification is part of an overall package. It won't make up for junk elsewhere in the 'package', but its presence is like icing on the cake of an offering that has everything else. For example, if a Nokia L1520 analog were available on VZW with IP certification, with the present dearth of compelling Android competition on VZW, I would use one of my upgrades on the L1520 analog.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 12:58 5

50. buccob (Posts: 2714; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)

I used to ignore these type of features because:
1) they used to be present in midrange smartphones or dedicated rough feature phones
2) because I though that given my day to day, I wouldn't need/use it.

BUT living in a tropical country, with beaches at 30 minutes (west) and 90 min (east) from my home, and also having a recently broken Olympus camera at the time... I needed a waterproof replacement that would allow me to safely take pictures at the beach and in all weather situations...

Also an IPx7 phone gives you a sense of security when it comes to build quality of the phone... it makes it feel sturdy and less prone to fall apart

Thats when the Xperia Acro S caught my eye, being the truly First flagship to be IP57 certified (sorry PA, it was not the Xperia Z)... and having a very good camera at the time (I have done extensive comparissons to iPhones 4, 4s, 5, SGS3, Xperia TX) so I actually took advantage of the IP certification fully...

And one thing that I love about waterproof Xperias that it is not common on other brands is the Wet Tracking displays... that actually allows me to use the display with water drops all over the screen... (it does not work underwater of course)...

So now, after almost a year and a half with this device, I have taken showers with it (browsing and listening to music at it). I have taken it to pools for pictures, to the beach also for pics and videos... and use it in the rain without worries... Very useful too in the kitchen, knowing I can wash it off...

Now this is to me the main feature when looking for a new smartphone... but it is one of those things you don't actually pay attention to, until you get it...

Kind of like when 3 years ago the most requested feature in a smartphone was to have a front facing camera... but at the same time it was one of the less used feature for the people that already got it in their phones.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 13:13

52. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4888; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

Could not have said it better.


posted on 07 Apr 2014, 04:58 10

3. mokhtar (Posts: 405; Member since: 06 Jan 2014)

i had the z , and now the z1 , and ip certification helps me a lot , i will begin for example in the summer , when i'am in the pool with my friends i love to take pictures and videos of us underwater , it's an incredible memories and experience .
2- when i take my shower i don't have problemes when i answear , or watching videos ( i do that a lot ) or chating in FACEBOOK , Whatsapp with my friends , thats really awsome , so ip certification it's necessary for me in any phone i would buy

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 06:16

29. Ashoaib (Posts: 3229; Member since: 15 Nov 2013)

Its not that important to me bcoz I dont keep my phone during shower... I will prefer IP certification if it will not add extra bezel

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 07:20 1

35. marlboro (Posts: 94; Member since: 27 Mar 2014)

waiting for the z2 compact...

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:07 3

4. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4275; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)

Pretty much worthless to me. If I have to deal with massive amounts of useless bezel space and flaps over all the ports, I don't want anything to do with it. I would much rather have manufacturers invest in better components than water/dust proof coatings and flaps.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:39 3

17. HansGoneInsane (unregistered)

I don't really think that IP certification causes that much of thick bezels (look at the Samsung S5 for example). The side bezels of the Z1 or Z2 are pretty thin and still they keep the smartphone water proof. I think that the top and bottom bezels are relatively thick because of the inner architecture of the device which is not necessarily related to the IP certification.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:49 3

21. vincelongman (Posts: 5048; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)

From what I've heard, Sony uses big bezels because they try to fit a 1/2.3" camera sensor in a 8mm thin body with no camera bump.
Most last 2013 flagships had 1/3.2" sensors, the S5 is 8mm has a 1/2.6" sensor and camera bump.
Z1/Z2 don't have camera bump, which is why they have put it above the screen/other components, in the bezel

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:54

24. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4275; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)

The Galaxy S5 is still a lot bigger in comparison to how compact the Galaxy S4 was, despite the only very slight screen increase. Even then, it isn't water proof, only water resistant.

I have yet to see a water proof phone without large bezels, so I would assume the bezels on the Z1 and Z2 are from the water proofing.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 15:35 1

57. Ashoaib (Posts: 3229; Member since: 15 Nov 2013)

You totally forget that there is a post about Sharp the smallest bezel phone, which is infact ip57 certified. If we consider your statement correct that ip certification adds bezel then how Sharp has smallest bazels, even its smaller then none certified phones

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 15:46 1

58. Calm_down_mon (Posts: 43; Member since: 12 Dec 2013)

I have yet to see a more stupid logic than yours about large bezels, so I would assume that you have the stupidest logic on the planet.

This assumption game sure is fun.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:14

5. faizan-sharif (Posts: 98; Member since: 26 Jun 2013)

i use my cell phone taking snaps which is my need of work as well all my hands are having water , i think for me some sort other coating wud work as well but having some thing extra is alwas a plus, so i fell sony is owsum in it

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:14 1

6. SamsungELITE (unregistered)

I still prefer higher IP certification rating like IP67 on Samsung phones. The higher the IP rating the more your phone is protected. But on the other hand, it still depends on the user on how he/she takes care of his phone.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:21

9. mokhtar (Posts: 405; Member since: 06 Jan 2014)

no boy you are wrong , ip58 is more higher than ip67
ip67 is water resistance , ip58 is waterproof and dust proof ;)

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:27 6

11. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)

You are both wrong. Both are water (IPx7) and dust resistant (IP5x). But S5 is dust proof (IP6x) whereas the Sony in water proof (IPx8).

I honestly just want IPx8 certified devices. Dust resistance is useless to me.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 08:43

38. HansGoneInsane (unregistered)

And you are wrong yourself. Sony's devices are water and dust proof. Sony has IP 58 and 55 certification.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 10:31 1

44. HansGoneInsane (unregistered)

I withdraw my comment above as I misunderstood your post.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 13:06 1

51. buccob (Posts: 2714; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)

Phones with IP67 is only higher in terms of dust ingress... while IP58 is higher in terms of waterproof...

The number 5 (in the first number digits) indicates that it is possible for dust to get in some parts of the phone but it is not harmful to the device in any way...

I rather have IP58 than IP67...

though I currently have IP57 and I have abused it way over the certified tests with no problems so far...

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:14 2

7. AlanB412 (Posts: 32; Member since: 23 Jul 2012)

I haven't had a phone with IP Cert yet but it is definitely a perk I would like to have. I'd feel much more comfortable with my phone knowing that I never have to worry about it becoming water damaged, particularly in the spring and summer months when I'm wearing lighter clothing that wouldn't protect my phone well from the elements.

But while I do think it would be useful for me, it's not something that I absolutely need. If rather have a good phone with software and features I like than an IP Cert'd one that I don't really enjoy using.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:15 5

8. apple4never (Posts: 1064; Member since: 08 May 2013)

waterproofing is something i need as a photographer/adventure junkie, i love my Z1 and the under water shots i can take on the fly when i dont have my go pro with me im gonna stick with sony cuz it doesnt look like their ditching the IP certified phones any time soon

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:23

10. _Bone_ (Posts: 2155; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)

Nice extra if comfort not affected, see S5. Never badmouthed an extra feature so long it doesn't come with compromises.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:28 1

12. StraightEdgeNexus (Posts: 3689; Member since: 14 Feb 2014)

I'm okay with it as long as it dont affect speaker loudness and giant bezels (giant as in z1 and m8, okay with s5 and z2 size). But imo all phones (except cheap chinese) come with some kind of protection atleast splash proof(like my s2-two water spills, a dunk, a tea spill).

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:36 2

16. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4275; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)

How are you okay with the Z2's size and not the Z1's or M8's? Both of them are smaller than the Z2, more so with the Z1.

posted on 07 Apr 2014, 05:47 1

20. StraightEdgeNexus (Posts: 3689; Member since: 14 Feb 2014)

Because z2 has larger screen. See size is no issue for me, ugly large bezels that make the screen look smaller than what it is what i hate.

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