Samsung has recently announced its 10th Galaxy S smartphone and in this post, we will see whether the new Galaxy S10, S10+ and S10e are actually waterproof or not. Initially, years back, smartphones were quite fragile. The displays weren’t able to withstand drops, the internals would malfunction after exposure to dust and generally, users would have to take great care of them. This leaded to the need for a case. These cases then offered protection that smartphones inherently lacked. However, the scenario is loads different now. With technologies such as Gorilla Glass making phone displays stronger, materials like aluminium and ceramics being utilized, the smartphone is now more durable — or so it seems. One major concern, however still, is water resistance and whether the new Galaxy S10 / S10 Plus / S10e are waterproof? You can read more about the difference in specifications of these phones in our tech specs guide.
Samsung for one, started to experiment with water protection 5 years back. Where other brands focused on shiny designs, Samsung actually took a design risk with the Galaxy S5 to make it water proof rather than ship it with a glass back. This lead to much criticism but it helped the brand come up with the Galaxy S7 later on which had a glass back along with a water-resistant rating — unseen before it. Similarly, these days, almost all brands have followed and made their smartphones resistant to water in one way or the other.
Difference Between IP65 / IP66 / IP67 / IP68 Ratings (Ingress Protection)
There are varying type of ratings when it comes to resistance against water. As a standard across the globe, there is one scale that every brand uses which is called IP rating that corresponds to Ingress Protection. This rating encompasses both solid material such as dust as well as liquids such as water in one single number / code. Depending on the strength, here are few ratings and what they mean:
- IP65– IP rated as “dust tight” and protected against water projected from a nozzle.
- IP66 – IP rated as “dust tight” and protected against heavy seas or powerful jets of water.
- IP67 – IP rated as “dust tight” and protected against immersion.
- IP68 – IP rated as “dust tight” and protected against complete, continuous submersion in water.
- IP69 – IP rated as “dust tight” and protected against high-pressure / steam jet water.
IP Rating of Samsung Galaxy S10 Series
For Galaxy S10 series of smartphones, all have a IP Rating of IP68. This corresponds to being dust tight and also being able to withstand submersion in water with depth of 1.5m for up to 30 minutes. While this grants Galaxy S10 the highest IP rating for a smartphone, it still doesn’t make it completely waterproof.
UPDATE: The Samsung Galaxy S10 5G has an IP69 rating. The above table has been updated with details on what this IP code mean.
There can be situations where water can enter into Galaxy S10, S10e or S10 Plus and cause malfunction. For example, if there is exposure to water that is pressurized or has a high flowing rate, Galaxy S10 can get water damage. Also swimming pools or beaches where depth of water is greater can also cause water to enter. Therefore, as in the rating, Galaxy S10 is water-resistant and not specifically waterproof.
To make a complete waterproof phone, Samsung would have to compromise on the design by including solid covers for ports and choosing different materials. The current rating, however, strikes a good balance between endurance and design quality. In past years, there have been Active variants to the Galaxy S smartphones. These variants have military spec-ed resistance. However, there was no Galaxy S9 active last year so it can be expected that there wont be one for Galaxy S10 as well. But we can’t say anything for sure right now.
Dos and don’ts with Samsung Galaxy S10
Now that we have established that Galaxy S10, S10e and S10 Plus aren’t actually completely waterproof but rather water resistant, there are few dos and don’ts that owners can follow to avoid any unnecessary accident.
First, if you go swimming in a deep pool, make sure to leave your phone behind or at-least a considerable distance away from the pool. That is, because water depth above 1.5m can cause water damage to Galaxy S10. Further, if you are going to the beach, again, the dept would be an issue so make sure to place your phone somewhere dry.
You can, however, give your phone a rinse if it some sticky liquid has spilled over it but do dry it thoroughly afterwards. Further, you can dip it in small puddles to record footage but make sure the depth is less than a meter and you don’t do it for long.
What to do After Water Damage?
Despite the rating, as we have said, there are couple of ways your Galaxy S10 still can be water-damaged. Symptoms of water damage would include the display glitching, charging port not working, headphone jack not working or even speakers sounding weird. There are more things that can go wrong after water exposure but these are the most common ones.
If, unfortunately, your phone has been water damaged, you can try out the trusty old rice method. Power off your phone, if the display is working and place it in a sealed bag full of rice. Make sure your phone is completely covered by rice. As rice absorb water, hopefully, any moisture that has gotten inside would be removed. You can also try using Silica Gel as well which also removes water.
This is a DIY remedy. If this doesn’t solve your problem, the next step is to take it to the shop / retailer you bought it from. Hopefully, it is under warranty and you get a replacement. Otherwise, you would have to pay for new components. Again, the outcome of what the retailer does solely depends on your situation such as which warranty plan you have and whether water damage is covered or not.
Samsung Galaxy S10 Waterproof Cases for Protection
To enhance the resistance of Galaxy S10, we recommend using some of these rugged cases. Key thing to look for in a case to prevent water damage is it should have covers for ports. Here are some:
AICase [Heavy Duty]
ArmadilloTek [Heavy Duty]
If you are interested for a clear case, we have a exhaustive list: