The guide to purchasing the best Waterproof smartphones in 2023 at a cheaper price tag and with perfect specifications to fulfil your tech needs.
The most clumsy of us have probably already dropped a smartphone at least once in a pool, bathtub, or toilet. For these users, there are waterproof phones that continue to operate after these types of accidents.
Huawei, Google, Samsung, Sony, and many other manufacturers offer certified references up to IP68, without a doubt, The ideal companion for anyone with two left hands or who spend time by a pool, or in their bathtub.
While it is possible to buy a protective shell to make your smartphone waterproof, you prefer it when it is automatically waterproof. Knowing the waterproof smartphone, you have to refer to its IP certification, which is an indicator of protection against various penetrations. The higher this index, the more resistant the smartphone to water or dust.
For example, all smartphones in this selection are IP68 certified. The index indicates that they are protected from the effects of immersion in water, at more than 1 meter, for at least 30 minutes. Be careful, however, that we are only talking about freshwater.
1. Samsung Galaxy S20
For many years now, the Galaxy S, including water-resistant, the Galaxy S20 has been no exception. The three terminals in the range launched in February are also unsurprising: you opt for the S20, S20, or S20 Ultra, IP68 certification is present. The terminals share their powerful Exynos 990 processor and Amoled 120 Hz displays for maximum fluidity. This refresh rate is one of the main innovations of this 2020 vintage.
The other novelty is to look at the photo part with the presence of a telephoto at the back of the three phones. However, it is on the S20 Ultra that is the most impressive with 4x optical zoom and can go up to 100x. It is, for now, the only terminal capable of reaching this level of zoom while waiting for the P40 Pro from Huawei. The S20 and S20 Plus are a little less well endowed in the photo but remain up to the task.
The S20 series is mainly criticized for its reduced range, the S20 Ultra being better than the other two, so it is this one that we recommend in the first place. On the other hand, you will have to know how to deal with the massive size of the terminal since it has a 6.9-inch screen. Note that unlike the previous generation, the S20 says goodbye to the jack. On the other hand, we still appreciate the OneUI interface as much.
Why buy Samsung Galaxy S20?
The most premium smartphones of the moment
The 120 Hz screen
An impressive photo part (especially on the S20 Ultra)
Whether it’s the Samsung Galaxy S10, S10 Plus, or S10e, they’re all three IP68 certified. Without overdoing it, the entire S10 family can then take a small shower from time to time, without affecting the operation of the phone. This certification allows you to withstand dust and immersion in water at a depth of more than one meter for 30 minutes.
Samsung’s new Home SoC powers all three, the Exynos 9820 backed by 6 or 8GB of RAM depending on the model. A configuration that offers high performance daily to take full advantage of the Play Store’s most gourmet games or navigate quietly through the excellent One UI interface. This new interface is simply a treat to use every day: it’s intuitive, it’s ergonomic, and it’s beautiful.
Also, they incorporate a new slab technology called Dynamic AMOLED. Once again, Samsung is putting the package for the screens of its flagships, and it is not its newcomers who will deviate from the rule.
And we won’t forget the whole photo part with three sensors on the S10 and S10, and two on the S10th (main and wide-angle). The S10s were among the best smartphones, and they remain today, especially now that prices have fallen.
Apple has been certifying its iPhone IP68 for several years now, with iPhone 11, 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max, no exception this year. If we find that the iPhone 11 offers the best value for money of the three, the iPhone 11 Pro terminals of choice if you have a larger budget.
No change on the waterproofing side; they are still IP68 and therefore resist immersion to more than a meter for a minimum of 30 minutes. Where these changes from last year, it’s mostly on the photo part with the addition of an Ultra wide-angle sensor across the range. The iPhone 11 Pro now has a trio, while the iPhone 11 has a duet.
iPhones remain iPhones, so we find the usual panoply of Apple. A high-performance processor, the Apple A13 Bionic this year, FaceID, and of course, iOS and the benefits of the Cupertino firm’s ecosystem. Finally, we note the significant progress on autonomy this year, especially on Pro models.
Like the S10, the Huawei P30 Pro is IP68 certified unlike its little brother the Huawei P30 does not find its place in this guide, because it is certified IP53 only… Like Samsung’s smartphones, the P30 Pro is an ultra-high-end smartphone that has relied on photos to convince. It is one of the complete photophones at the moment with its four sensors (including a ToF), which allow it to offer an optical zoom 5x, and even 10x in hybrid.
This Pro version of the Chinese flagship has many other advantages under its hull, including its magnificent 6.4-inch OLED screen with curved edges, impressive quality as well as the performance with its Kirin 980 accompanied by 8GB of RAM and finally above-average range.
After the perfect Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL, Google has refilled for the 2019 – 2020 season with the Pixel 4 and 4 XL. As you may have noticed in the title, we only recommend the Pixel 4 XL this year, not the “short” 4. The reason is simple, and the basic model has frankly disappointed us on autonomy. By default, we, therefore, recommend opting for the large model, unless you want to have a compact smartphone even if sacrificing autonomy.
Like last year, Pixel 4 and 4XL are IP68 certified. Both are, therefore, able to withstand immersion in water at a maximum depth of 1 meter for 30 minutes. For the rest, they are mostly excellent high-end smartphones, which excel in photography and offer a real user experience as Google wants with Android 10.
Why buy Google Pixel 4 XL
The Pure Android Experience
Always as good at photography
The Pixel 4 for its small size (but not its autonomy)
Manufacturers generally reserve IP certification for the most high-end models because it has a cost. Only Crosscall, a specialist in “outdoor” waterproof smartphones, offers insulated terminals under the 300 euro “public price” mark. But beware, what you gain in waterproofing and resistance, you lose it in technical characteristics.
The cheapest option will be the Croscall Trekker-M1 Core. Launched at 279 euros, it is now found around 200 euros, especially at Amazon. The technical sheet is very shy with a 4.5-inch screen of 854 x 480 pixels, a Snapdragon 210, and a photosensor of 8 megapixels. On the other hand, it has the merit of being autonomous, thanks to the little technical sheet. Moreover, it is the only one to resist saltwater, notice to surfers.
Note that the manufacturer has announced a new waterproof model not too expensive: the Crosscall Core M4, offered under 300 euros. However, it is not yet available for sale at the time of the update of this article.
Alternatively, you can also go through a high-end model from previous years, like the Huawei P20 Pro or the Galaxy S9. In our opinion, this is the best option if you want a waterproof smartphone, but you have a limited budget. Keep an eye on the promotions, and they arrive regularly.