Update: This giveaway is now closed, and the winners are — lloydrv (tablet kit), visual360photography (smartphone kit), chinoy885 (smartphone kit), and bamfhacker (tablet kit). All winners have been contacted. Thank you for entering, and keep your eye out for more Gear Diary Giveaways! =)
Last year 57% of 5200 people surveyed admitted using their phones in the bathroom, and this year admitted to checking Facebook while ‘otherwise indisposed’. Another survey this year said that 56% of an undisclosed number of people use their mobile device in the bathroom, and of those, 27% of the 56% are playing games, while 70% of that 56% admitted that they were actually talking on their phones. Are you with me so far? Good. My point is that people are using their mobile devices in some pretty risky areas.
It’s inevitable that some of those phones will end up getting dropped in the loo. This happens often enough that there is actually a Facebook group dedicated to “People who Drop Their Cell Phones in the Toilet“, even though at this writing only 371 people have been unselfconscious enough to join. It happens often enough that NPR’s “All Things Considered” did a spot called “Dropped Calls: When Cell Phone Meets Toilet.”
Of course, being dropped in a toilet isn’t the only way to soak a handset; I managed to temporarily kill my iPhone 4 last summer when I tilted it the wrong way to capture a picture while it was raining. Boy, did I feel dumb. Upon the advice of several friends, I put my iPhone in a bag full of uncooked white rice; the idea being that rice is a low-tech desiccant, similar to the little silica balls that come in everything from beef jerky to new tennis shoes, even if not quite as effective.
While I believe that the rice did help dry my device out more thoroughly, I noticed afterward that a white powdery residue was inside my charging port, so maybe rice wasn’t the best solution. A suggestion for the future was that I start saving the little silica packs every time I came across them … but I never really got started with that project. =P
Now that it’s summer, there are even more opportunities for devices to die from watery deaths; whether the damage occurs from an accidental washing, dunking, rain shower, impromptu swim, accidental spill — or any other disaster. The thought of having to cough up the money to replace a damaged device that isn’t fixed by the rice trick is galling, especially when you consider that it was your own klutziness or carelessness that killed your electronic item.
And of course, there is a better solution.
When I was offered the chance to review a couple of products from DRY-ALL, including their Wet Smartphone Emergency Kit and Wet Electronic Tablet Emergency Kit, I considered it kismet. Assuming that I would be able to prove that the kit worked as promised, I figured having product on hand that was effective in even the worst accidents would mean that I wouldn’t ever need it; it’s funny how that seems to work.
The Wet Smartphone Emergency Kit comes inside an easily opened plastic bag. Inside, there is a 6″ x 4″ red reusable ‘First Aid for Wet Electronics’ kit.
The DRY-ALL site says that this kit:
-Dries all phones to 0% humidity.
-Recovers wet Smartphones in as little as 6 hours.
-[Can be used] up to 5X’s for thousands in savings.
-Dries phones that have been submerged
-[Is] Easy to use!
-Dries using DRY-ALL’s proprietary Blue Bead Technology™.
-DRY-ALL’s patent pending absorption chamber.
-Guaranteed to dry all wet smart phones.
Opening the four latches on the box reveals that the kit is divided into two areas: unlike the dry rice trick, the phone will not sit directly in the beads. Notice how there are some blue beads mixed in with all the white ones? The kit is supposed to still be good for future uses until those blue beads are gone.
According to DRY-ALL:
The Wet Smartphone Emergency Kit by DRY-ALL uses proprietary blue bead drying technology to dry any wet smart phone fast. The wet Smartphone emergency kit works by using the most effective and aggressive dehumidifier for electronics available anywhere in the world. The patented moisture absorption chamber dries wet Smartphone’s in as little as six hours by pulling the moisture out of the inside your phone. When all directions are followed the wet Smartphone emergency kit has a 100% success rate. The one of a kind absorbent used in DRY-ALLs wet Smartphone kit works better than any other drying remedy out there.
The instructions are simple: once the device has been soaked, don’t press any buttons, remove the battery immediately (or on the iPhone, turn the phone off), rinse with distilled water if the phone has fallen into anything other than water, towel dry the phone, and then place it in the red container face up.
Depending upon how long the phone has been in the water, it may need to be left in the red box for 6 to 48 hours, but possibly even longer.
I should mention that I was also sent a one-use Wet Electronic Tablet Emergency Kit; I’m sure that you’ll understand why I decided to save it for a day when my Kindle or iPad takes an unplanned swim.
My original plan was to test the kit with Kev’s old Nokia N82, since that phone has been sitting idle in a drawer ever since he got his iPhone. Unfortunately, that was long enough for the N82′s battery to stop responding to charging.
I needed a phone that worked so that I could prove or disprove the DRY-ALL kit’s effectiveness, but I couldn’t sacrifice a phone that would cause a major loss if the kit didn’t work for me; in other words, there was no way I was going to dunk my Vertu Constellation Quest (and not only because it has leather trim!) or my iPhone 4 (it’s still under warranty!). Luckily, I had a working phone that I considered expendable: the T-Mobile myTouch 3G.
With my helpful assistant, Daisy, I approached our pool with phone, towel, camera, and DRY-ALL kit in hand. Daisy tested the water to make sure that it was cold and wet; it was.
So I proceeded to drop the phone on the first step … and I left it there for about five seconds. The only problem is that when I pulled it out of the water, the myTouch was still working just fine [way to go, HTC!]. So I dropped the myTouch back in and watched the screen go dark after about 30 seconds.
And here is result: one soggy and dark myTouch 3G.
First I gave it a thorough wipe-down …
… then I removed the battery door and the battery. (I didn’t think to remove the SIM, because mine is a deactivated one that I leave installed so I won’t get a no-SIM warning).
I placed the phone (minus its removed accessories) on the kit’s tray, lying face-up.
I clamped the case closed and collected my pieces to bring inside.
•._•´¯`•._.•´¯`•Fast forward 24 hours•´¯`•._.•´¯`•._.•
I just reinstalled the battery and battery cover; I turned on the phone and found …
The myTouch 3G works perfectly, and it seems to have no ill effects from its dunking! Color me impressed! =D
This is exactly the type of solution that I needed when my iPhone got wet last summer, and I’ll bet that you can think of close calls or maybe even a time when your phone got unexpectedly dunked. A DRY-ALL Wet Smartphone Emergency Kit sitting in a cabinet at home, in the trunk of your car, or in your office would provide a ready solution and peace of mind. The instructions are simple, and the kit is so easy to use that anyone could use it to save their phone.
The Dry-All Wet Emergency Kits are available directly from the manufacturer and from other retailers. The Wet Smartphone Emergency Kit will work up to five times, whereas the Wet Electronic Tablet Emergency Kit is for one-time use only. There is also a one-time use only Wet Cellular Phone Emergency Kit available.
MSRP: $59.99 for the reusable (up to five times) smartphone kit (or get it for $46.98 from our Amazon affiliate store); $49.99 for the one-time use tablet kit (or get it for $38.53 from Amazon); $29.99 for the one-time use cellular phone kit (or get it for $24.96 from Amazon)
What I Like: The kit works; easy to use; saves phones from unexpected dunkings; multiple uses from the smartphone kit; much less to buy the kit than to replace a phone!
What Needs Improvement: Nothing; it works as promised
We have two Wet Smartphone Emergency Kits and two Wet Electronic Tablet Emergency Kits to give away! To win one, please leave a short comment about a close call or actual dunking your device or a friend’s has been through. If you (or your friend) managed to salvage the device, make sure you tell what method was used. Also be sure to let us know whether you would like a smartphone kit or the tablet kit. I’ll leave the contest open until midnight CT, Friday, June 24th when I will randomly choose a winner. Good luck! =)