Japan’s Shower Habits Mean Nearly Every Phone There Is Waterproof

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If you’re dissatisfied with the waterproof phone options available in the States, consider moving to Japan. Mashable reports that nearly every smartphone sold in the country is waterproof. Anyone who’s been thrown into a pool fully clothed or dropped their device in the toilet knows how useful this feature can be, but it’s become widespread in Japan for one reason in particular: Women are so attached to their phones that they can’t resist taking them into the shower.

Water-resistant phones have been the norm in Japan for over a decade. At the 2012 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Panasonic executive Taro Itakura told AFP, "In Japan, you can't sell a phone if it's not waterproof. About 90 to 95 percent of all phones sold now are already waterproof.”

Even LG, which doesn’t plan to launch their waterproof phones globally anytime soon, has adapted to the quirky phone habits of Japanese consumers. They didn’t even attempt to sell their modular G5 phone in Japan because it would have been impossible to seal. As LG's global communications director Ken Hong told Mashable, "In Japan, being waterproof is far more important than being able to remove your phone's battery.”

Water-resistant phones are slowly becoming popular in the United States, with Samsung, Sony, and Apple all embracing the trend. But while the tech is advancing, it shouldn’t be taken as an invitation to treat your phone like a pool toy. Phone companies discourage submerging your phone underwater, because even if the moisture doesn’t cause damage, salt and added chemicals might.

[h/t Mashable]