Sales of water resistant smartphones surge in Europe

Repairing liquid-damaged phones costs consumers a staggering $10.7 billion a year

Water resistant smartphones reached 22.5 million units in the first nine months

Water resistant smartphones reached 22.5 million units in the first nine months

 

More than 10,000 smartphones get damaged by liquids every day in Europe, making the market for water resistant devices one of the fastest growing segments, according to research firm IDC.

Liquid damage is the second-largest cause of damaged smartphones in the world, representing 35 per cent of all devices repaired with related costs totalling in excess of $10.7 billion a year in Western Europe alone.

New figures from IDC show smartphones offering protection against water and other liquids jumped 45.2 per cent in the first nine months of 2016, while shipments of non-resistant devices declined by 17 per cent during the same period.

Water resistant smartphones reached 22.5 million units in the first nine months to represent 23 per cent of the total number of smartphones shipped.

Growth in the segment was supported by the success of Samsung and Huawei devices offering water resistant features and by the recently launched iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, have a rating of IP67 under IEC standard 60529.

“Accidental damage is responsible for 95 per cent of smartphone failures. While many manufacturers try to compete through lower price points, others differentiate by improving the user experience with screen durability and resistance to liquids, the two most common causes for smartphone damage,” said Francisco Jeronimo, European mobile devices research director at IDC.

“Nowadays, smartphones are used throughout the day, but with increasing usage comes a greater risk of accidents, such as dropping the device on the floor or into water. With the advance of nano-technology and better industrial design, liquid damage is a problem that should no longer exist,” he added.