A few years ago, you'd be hard-pressed to find an elegant, premium phone that was also waterproof. Aside from Sony's Xperia phones, most waterproof phones were clunky-looking with midtier specs.
These days, though, most high-end flagships come with some level of protection against water. In addition to the latest Samsung flagships, Apple, Google and LG all have waterproof marquee handsets that satisfy the IP67 (or higher) standard.
With so many companies diving into this feature, waterproofing may soon become an industry standard, and gone forever are the days when mere water-resistant coatings and seals were exclusive to bulky, rugged phones. Instead, it may soon come down to how much more protected one device is than another. (Get a deeper dive into.)
If your phone can't take a dip in a pool, companies such as HzO make coatings that go way beyond the military spec for 30 minutes and 3 feet of water -- in fact, way back at MWC 2014, we saw a treated handset .and
Until every phone is water-friendly however, we're looking forward to the day we can all go to the beach, pool parties, rafting trips and water parks without fearing for our phones (or triple-wrapping them in plastic baggies). In the meantime, here are 11 (well, technically more like 15) splash-sustaining phones that impressed us recently.
Editors' note: We update this post whenever swim-friendly phones surface. It was originally published Aug. 6, 2013.
Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus
Coming in a new shade of purple, the 5.8-inch(and its bigger brother) are more expensive than last year's model, and its low-light photo skills aren't as adept at its competitors. However, its super powerful processor, enduring battery life and elegant design make it one of the best Android phones available. Read our reviews of the and .
Apple iPhone X
As a shakeup to Apple's whole iPhone lineup, the tenth-anniversaryis a standout in many ways. It has a larger, 5.8-inch OLED display, super-slim bezels and optical image stabilization on both its rear cameras. But all these fancy features come at a high price, and with a starting price of $999 in the US, £999 in the UK and AU$1,579 in Australia, it's the most expensive iPhone yet. .
Google Pixel 2
The best thing about theis its superb 12-megapixel camera, which can take great using just one lens. However, the 5-inch phone also has a speedy Snapdragon 835 processor, timely Android updates from Google and Google Lens, and a software feature that lets you immediately look up information about the objects around you. The Pixel 2 also has a bigger brother, the . Though we like its larger 6-inch display, concerns have been raised about , which Google has addressed. For now, however, it's safe to go with the Pixel 2. .
Nokia 8 Sirocco
Although Nokia hasn't been as strong a mobile contender as in years past, its latest flagship has us intrigued. Thefeatures a 5.5-inch display that falls right to the edge of the screen. Its two rear-facing cameras include a telephoto lens, and it runs the minimal Android One OS. .
LG V30S ThinQ and V30
For the most part, theis a lot like the first that launched in August 2017. It still has a 6-inch screen, a wide-angle camera (along with a standard rear-camera), the Snapdragon 835 chipset and a water-resistant design. But the V30S adds a few AI features, including object recognition in its camera and voice assistance. .
Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact
Made of metal and glass, thechallenge the Galaxy S9 in terms of features and style. Though the 5.7-inch XZ2 is the bigger of the two phones, the 5-inch Compact shares almost all of the same key specs. With wireless charging, a Snapdragon 845 processor and a 19-megapixel rear camera, these two handsets are worth paying attention to. .
Samsung Galaxy S8 Active
If you want a premium phone that can endure more than just water, consider the. A rugged version of last year's , this phone is has a metal body, is shock-resistant, and has a higher-capacity 4,000mAh battery (compared with the S8's 3,000mAh one). Unfortunately, it's only available in the US with the carrier AT&T for now, at about $850. .
Motorola Moto X4
Not every water-resistant phone costs an arm and a leg. In addition to packing two rear cameras, NFC and expandable memory, theonly costs $400, £349 or AU$699. Motorola's Moto X4 (as opposed to Google and Amazon's -- both of which offer the phone as well) features lots of useful software tools too, such as multiple digital assistants including Amazon Alexa. .
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus
As anticipated updates to 2016's pair of Apple flagships, the(and larger ) have a few upgrades you might want to consider. They have a new, steel-reinforced glass backing, better cameras with a new image signal processor and sensors and wireless charging. Sure, they're not as flashy as the aforementioned iPhone X, but they're cheaper, starting at $699, £699 and AU$1,079 for the iPhone 8 and $799, £799 and AU$1,229 for the iPhone 8 Plus. and reviews.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8
Though it's pricey, thefeatures dual cameras like the Galaxy S9 Plus and has a boatload of stylus tricks. It's one of the most feature-rich Android phone you can buy and includes Samsung's digital assistant , the latest chipset from Qualcomm and facial unlocking. .
Some may be bummed that the's waterproofing comes hand in hand with a nonremovable battery. But LG hopes that its slight bump in capacity (to 3,300mAh) and wireless charging feature (for US customers) will offset any disadvantages. Plus, it has two rear cameras and a tall 5.7-inch display. .
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