IP Ratings: What Do the Numbers Mean?

IPS Ratings: What Do the Numbers Mean?IPS Ratings: What Do the Numbers Mean?

IP Ratings: What Do the Numbers Mean?

IP, also known as “ingress protection,” is a durability metric of water entering your phone’s internals.

 

As such, the IP rating of your smartphone indicates the degree of protection it has against liquid and dust. So, if you’re someone who loves to challenge nature as a pastime, then it is highly advised that you firmly understand your phone’s IP rating.

Firstly, let us break down the rating itself. Users will see that they are 2 numbers on the rating label like IP67 or IP68.

 

That said, if you were to see the alphabet ‘X’, it means that the manufacturers do not have the specific data to gauge the protection rating, whereas the digit ‘0’ indicates no protection at all.

What does the first digit indicate?What does the first digit indicate?

What does the first digit indicate?

The first digit is the indicator for your device against solid objects. Usually, ranging from 0-6, the higher the number, the better equipped is it to prevent solid objects from harming your device’s insides.

 

Here’s a table showcasing the level of rating and what protection you are getting from your phone.

Digit/Level Size of object it can prevent Effectiveness
0 No protection No protection
1 >50 mm Able to protect against large surfaces
2 >12.5 mm Can prevent finger-sized objects
3 >2.5 mm Can prevent thicker object like wires and cables
4 >1mm Can prevent objects as thick as screws
5 Dust protected Decent protection against dust and complete protection for contact
6 Dust tight Perfect protection against dust and contact
What does the second number indicate?What does the second number indicate?

What does the second number indicate?

As for the second digit, the number here indicates its water-resistant level. Typically ranging from 0-9, and higher number meaning better water resistance.

 

Here is the breakdown of the ratings.

Digit/Level Water resistance Effectiveness
0 No protection No protection
1 Droplets of water Able to protect the device from dripping water for around 10 mins
2 Dripping water titled up to 15 degrees

Able to protect the device from dripping water for around 10 mins (even in tilted position)

3 Spraying level Able to resist spraying water for up to 5 mins
4 Splashes Able to resist 5 mins of splashing water
5 Water jets Able to protect the device from water pumping out of an average nozzle
6 Powerful water jets Able to protect the device from water pumping out of a powerful nozzle
7 Immersion for up to 1 meter Able to withstand 30 mins of 1 meter underwater
8 Immersion over 1 meter Able to withstand continuously underwater. Water depth are usually recommended by manufacturers themselves
9 High pressure Able to withstand continuous high-pressure of water but rarely found in mobile devices

It is important to note that there are no waterproof phone and continuous exposure to water is usually the not the best practice when it comes to mobile phones’ longevity.

Ideally, you would want to go with a mobile phone that has an IP rating of IP68 as this gives you a leeway for accidents. Cases where children dropping their parents’ phone at a swimming pool is not uncommon, hence it is better to be safe than sorry.

 

All in all, be sure to check the IP rating when purchasing a phone. Modern phone series from Samsung and Apple usually have an IP68 rating with a proven track record of durability.

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