Samsung Galaxy S7: What does IP68 mean?

Last updated: 8 June 2016

Samsung Galaxy S7: What does IP68 mean?

The new Samsung Galaxy S7 is pretty sleek and has some really impressive features – including an ‘IP68’ rating. A quick look at the promotional images for the Samsung S7 show us that the IP rating makes the phone water resistant, but there’s a bit more to it than that…

So, before you start swimming the Channel with your phone in your bum bag, let’s find out exactly what IP68 means, and how the Samsung S7 stacks up.

What it all means.

Without getting too technical, IP stands for ‘Ingress Protection’ and applies to a rating system set by the International Electrotechnical Commission (or IEC) to let us know how protected gadgets are against foreign bodies like dust and water.

The two-stage rating for dust and water protection is the number that follows the ‘IP’ part. The first number (in this case 6) refers to how resistant the object is to solid objects, including dust; while the second number (8) relates to water resistance.

Just to confuse things, both scales work differently, as dust resistance is marked from 0-6 while water is marked at 0-8. Typically, the higher the number, the better the protection is.

You can probably guess that the IP68 rating on the new Samsung S7 is pretty impressive, and quite useful if you’re looking for a robust phone that can cope with the elements. But although the rating ensures that the phone is completely dust resistant, the liquid side of things isn't quite as straightforward…

How water resistant is the Samsung S7?

Rather than meaning that the Samsung Galaxy S7 is completely protected from water, the IP68 rating actually indicates that your Samsung won't be damaged by being immersed water to a depth of more than 1m – so if you drop it down the loo or get caught in a rainstorm, you should be okay.

Because the IEC requires all manufacturers to provide information about the depth of water each device can survive in, and how long it can spend in that amount of water, Samsung have stated that the S7 can withstand up to 30 minutes in up to 1.5m of water. Impressive stuff.

Samsung S7 vs Samsung S5.

The new Galaxy S7 can be submerged in water half a metre deeper than the Samsung S5. And that's not the only protective improvement. The environmental sealing of the Samsung S7 means that you don't have to remember to apply a rubber stopper to the micro-USB port to keep the phone protected. All the sealing is internal and integrated, so you won't have to worry when the rain clouds start to gather.