Xperia Z2 survives six weeks under water, 10 meters deep

by: Andrew GrushAugust 11, 2014

One of the features that has helped set Sony apart from the rest of the pack is that its devices often come with water and dust resistant technology, although handsets like the Galaxy S5 have now followed suit with this trend. Officially, Sony rates its Xperia Z2 as being IP58 complaint, meaning it can handle fresh water up to 1.5m for up to 30 minutes. Unofficially though? It seems the handset can last much longer than we’d think.

According to the Swedish press, Alexander Maxén was on vacation with a friend when he dropped his phone into the ocean, causing it to fall into a bed of water that was more than 10 meters deep. Reportedly he was unable to get the device, though when they got back to land they were able to call it and found it was still receiving service.

Six weeks later, a friend of his went scuba diving and was able to recover the device. While the handset has received external damage and its battery was out of juice, surprisingly it booted right up after being plugged in. In fact, the device was still working well enough to make calls and everything.

So why doesn’t Sony rate its devices for longer resistance, if they are able to handle it? Just because this particular phone got lucky, doesn’t mean every Xperia Z2 would be able to repeat this experience with the same result. The big takeaway here though is if you find yourself in a situation where your Sony handset goes under water deeper or longer than you’d like, not all hope is lost. Just don’t expect to get as lucky as Maxén did.

  • Gomez.

    I fucking wish my S5 could do that but instead it falls into the pool for 2 seconds and it doesn’t work!

    • Jermaine Smit

      Well i did test it no problems so you failed to close it correctly.

    • MasterMuffin

      You’re supposed to have the back cover with it if you put it under water ;)

    • mystikalrush

      After looking at 6 weeks of underwater damage, the S5 wouldn’t stand a chance, as its not a uni-body design anyways. Off goes the cover, out goes the IP67, battery, etc.

    • Jesus

      troll harder

  • Tiago Stille

    Me, on the other hand, got the short end of the stick. Stuck my brand new Z2 in the pool and 10 minutes later the screen went dead to never come back. There was a lot of water dripping from the mic holes on the bottom of the device. Sent it back to Sony and got a new one 10 days later. In that meantime I got a Moto X and ended up loving it. Decided to sell the Z2. It left a really bad taste in my mouth after all that.

    • Arup

      Moto X doesn’t hold a candle with its cheap build quality to Z2, totally different entities.

      • Tiago Stille

        You’re right, they are. I wouldn’t call the Moto X cheap, but the Z2 does fell more premium. Nevertheless, the screen size (I’m more comfortable with “small” screens, as I found out while using the X), voice commands and very close to stock experience made me choose the X over the Z2. That’s the beauty of Android for me: we always have a choice :)

        • Arup

          Its the screen size that makes me endear to the Z1c which has all the features of Z2 in a small hand holdable package. I have immersed it many times and use it under showers regularly.

          • Tiago Stille

            To be honest, that was my first option too, but Sony decided that it would not sell the Z1c here in Brazil, unfortunately.

          • Arup

            Truly unfortunate as you would have loved it, now am waiting for Z3c, I also have a ZR which is the compact version of Z.

  • Zeke Adam

    I’m curious about how it’s got signal 10 meters deep. Usually phones doesn’t have signal in a bathtub of water cause water doesn’t transfer radio waves too good.

    • DanielSada

      I agree, thats why nuclear scientists use pools for nuclear waste, because it stops radiation and waves. I call BS on this article.

      • Nathaniel Roach

        It’s quite a significantly different type of radiation from nuclear waste than it is from a cell tower…

        • Athoz

          Water absorbs a very broadband of frequencies thats why submarines have to reach the surface to communicate. GSM, 3G and 4G have very short penetration depth in the water. And thats why you use microwave ovens at 2.45 GHz, because the water in the food absorbs this freq.

          • Nathaniel Roach

            That may also be true, but nuclear radiation, as mentioned above, is not microwave radiation.

  • Mark

    This is an ad for sony… sensacionalist news

    • Mister Erik

      It’s not, I read it in the Swedish news!

  • Shark Bait

    Amazing! this is why i like the sony, would really like a waterproof nexus this time, and made by sony would be a bonus

    • neonix

      Cyanogenmod has recently reached the Z2. ;) Just install that. I’ve been running nightlies on my Z2 and it’s very stable.

      • Bryce

        Does double tap to wake work?

        • neonix

          It seems they haven’t enabled it yet as of the 8/11 nightly. And Wake Gestures Xposed module says ‘the device doesn’t support gestures or isn’t enabled’. But obviously since the Z2 stock firmware supports this, the hardware is capable of it and they should be able to enable it in CM like they have on other phones.

          I’ve made a ticket on the CM Jira to have it enabled. Feel free to vote on it so they get to it sooner:

  • Shark Bait

    So why doesn’t Sony rate its devices for longer resistance, if they are able to handle it?

    My guess is marketing. If they say it can do 10m more people will try taking it to 20m and it will break, probably giving it some bad press. Its a safety factor if you like. I had the Motorola defy, which was only splash proof, but I had it a 3.5m and it worked fine, again I guess it was safety marketing.

  • Jayfeather787

    Well done, Sony.

  • Woe of [S]unjΔy

    The Z2 is the holy grail of smartphones.

  • Michael

    I so badly want to call bullshit on this, simply because cell phones don’t work underwater. Try it yourself: Take any phone, put a waterproof case on if it’s not waterproof, and go get into a pool. First, take a look at the signal above the water. Normal. A few bars. Ok. Now go underwater and look at it underwater. The signal should drop within pretty much seconds of going underwater. Cell phones do not work underwater. I’m not an expert, but maybe it has something to do with the salt content in ocean water, who knows. But as far as I know, cell phone radios do not work underwater.

    • kureno

      Tested this today.
      Live close the sea so I just put my Note 2 in a plastic bag with ziplock and than put that in another ziplock plastic bag(and that bag in a normal plastic bag that I made a knot on)
      Went out to about 1.4 deep water, had full 4G signal and when it was at the seafloor it had lost 1 bar.
      Tried at 3 meter deep water to and at the seafloor the signal was still on 4G but it was down to 2 bars.

    • Popescu Catalin

      Tried in the pool. Not a single bar lost. Xperia Z :)

  • It’sLearn’dPepsi

    just because you call the number of the phone and the telephony system makes a ringing noise on your end does not mean at all that the phone call has connected to the other side. This is simply to keep you on the line while the network repeatedly attempts in vain to reach the other hand set. People thought the same thing when they call peoples phones when air planes go down. It is just a trick of how the network operates. No phone will have reception with a body of water absorbing the radio waves.

    • robert

      Totally agreed, actually I was going to post stating something similar just before reading your comment

  • JDMillest

    if sony rate its device longer a lot of people will be filing for a refund or sue.

  • mirekk

    So what? Do not need that, not a diver :P I’d rather it was more ergonomic (including Back button under the RIGHT thumb, not left).

  • Fruity Insanity

    “Complaint”? Or did you mean “compliant”?

  • john

    Only if my Ultra Z can survive shower.
    Waterproof? First time it goes under water, gets condensation on camera lens and it stops working.

  • Let’s Be Realistic.

    Bullsh!+. No phone has radio antenna strength to receive a signal 30+ ft underwater. Try again with a better lie.

  • Guest

    Sony is great

  • Christian Carlo de Jesus

    I used my Z2 under water for only around 0.8M deep in fresh water for 3 minutes and it got broken. All caps were properly closed. It’s still not recommended to put your Z2 under water, unless you’re sure that your warranty will repair or replace your phone properly.