TekDry is bringing its wet phone dryers to 600 more Staples stores after making a deal on Shark Tank
You dropped your new smartphone into the toilet, or into the bathtub, or into a big bowl of soup. Where do you go next? No, the answer is not Disneyworld. Actually, you might want to head to your local Staples. A company that provides dryers for wet phones called TekDry is soon going to be inside more than 600 Staples retail locations.
The TekDry dryer uses low heat to boil the liquid out of your phone without damaging the components. The process takes just 30 minutes. The company has two rules that prospective customers need to follow once their phone gets wet. One, do not plug in the damaged device. Two, get the phone into TekDry fast.
So how much will it cost to turn your dying phone into a drying phone? Smartphones are priced at $69.99. And you pay only if your phone is working after the treatment is completed. 75% of the time, the damaged phone comes out of the TekDry dryer working perfectly fine. Testing conducted by the company shows that 48 hours in rice removed only 13% of the water trapped in a phone. Leaving the phone to dry out in the air did better, with 15% of the water gone in 48 hours. That was still not good enough. TekDry removed 100% of the water in just 30 minutes.
We first told you about the company and a competitor called DryBox back in 2014. We decided to revisit TekDry for two reasons. One is because of its new expanded deal with Staples. Secondly, TekDry appeared on Shark Tank yesterday and Kevin O' Leary ended up loaning the company $500,000 at 13% interest over 36 months. After the note is due, O'Leary can convert it into 5% equity ownership of the company. We did note that despite trusting the company enough to invest $500,000 in it, O' Leary refused to allow his phone to be used as a guinea pig to show how well TekDry works.
With TekDry getting national attention for its appearance on the show, we wouldn't be surprised to find out that it has more deals lined up like the one with Staples that it just announced. The more companies that agree to place a TekDry dryer inside its stores, the easier it will be to quickly find a place to dry your waterlogged phone.
And if you think that Apple's IP67 certification rating on the the Apple iPhone 7 and Apple iPhone 7 Plus takes away a large chunk of potential customers for TekDry, better think again. The waterproofing on the new iPhone units starts to fade over time.