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Germaphobes rejoice: Japan gets the world's first washable phone

Japan has produced the world's first washable phone, yes really. It’s called the Kyocera Digno Rafre, and you can scrub it with soap and water to your heart’s content without ever worrying about damaging the device.

Published onDecember 3, 2015

Japan has produced the world’s first washable phone, yes really. It’s called the Kyocera Digno Rafre, and you can scrub it with soap and water to your heart’s content without ever worrying about damaging the device. While waterproof phones are fairly old-hat in Japan, no smartphone has yet been produced with waterproofing specs capable of withstanding germ-scouring cleanliness.

The waterproof Kyocera Hydro WAVE smartphone makes its way to T-Mobile and MetroPCS

This actually makes a lot of sense, when you think about it. With our increasingly health-conscious culture, it’s a little bit surprising we don’t hear more of a demand for this capability. We talk about how filthy cash is pretty regularly, and most of the things we handle on a daily basis are wiped down on the regular. Sure, we don’t exactly put our phones in our mouth, but these things slide into pocket after lint-filled pocket, rattle around in purses with fragments of peppermint, and never see a hint of hygiene through years of use… and we press them against our faces. Almost makes one wonder if smartphone washing will become as much a social norm as hand washing in the future.

In addition to being washable with normal handsoap, the Rafre is perfect for help in the kitchen if you’re using the internet as your sous chef, and if you’ve really been meaning to take a bath but can’t pry yourself away from Facebook long enough to bother, your problem is soon to be solved. The “world’s first soap-proof phone” even has a rubber-duck-shaped kickstand to prop it up and a built in 1seg TV tuner. Now you can live your dream of becoming the side-character in The Truman Show who never leaves his bathtub.

The Rafre sports Android 5.1 Lollipop, rocks a 720p 5-inch display mounted onto a 10.1mm-thick body. It also has a 13 MP camera which, as indicated in the tongue-in-cheek commercial, can be entrusted to your idiot child for use in food photography.

The Rafre’s touchscreen allegedly works even when the device is wet, and it has a “scratch healing” finish to keep it looking new. The durable device implements Kyocera’s Smart Sonic Receiver technology, meaning it is capable of producing sound without an external speaker. The device comes out December 11, 2015 in Japan for the KDDI carrier for ¥57,420 (US $465).

What are your thoughts on the world’s first soap-proof phone? Cool, crazy, a bit of both? Let us know in the comments!