Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Is this the 'childproof' mobile phone? Samsung launches waterproof and dustproof version of its Galaxy S4

Is this the 'childproof' mobile phone? Samsung launches waterproof and dustproof version of its Galaxy S4

From spilt cups of tea to being dropped from on high, many a parents' mobile phone has fallen victim to adventurous children.

But one new handset - the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active - claims to be waterproof, dustproof and even childproof.

The company is said to have designed the phone, which is a toughened version of its current S4 handset, specifically for parents to avoid accidents and damage caused by youngsters.


However, the handset's warranty doesn't cover damage caused by accidents, misuse, water damage, defects caused by 'sand or dirt', or 'neglect'.

The S4 Active was announced in May, but officially went on sale earlier this month.

Samsung calls it 'the perfect companion for exploration, activity and adventure'.

It has been designed to stay underwater for up to 30 minutes and take pictures with a waterproof camera.

The handset additionally comes with a water-resistant headphone jack and is inside a sealed case to keep out dust.

Its LCD screen has a Glove Touch component that means it can be used with gloves, too.

Luke Mansfield, head of Samsung's Europe innovation team told The Times the phone was designed with parents in mind.

He said: 'We know a lot of parents use their phones to show children content. We ended up going to a lot of family homes where we were shown a graveyard of smashed phones.'

Yet despite Samsung's durability claims, the warranty that comes with the phone doesn't cover certain types of damage the phone was designed to protect against.

First discovered by VentureBeat, the warranty in the phone's user manual claims: 'This Limited Warranty does not cover: (a) defects or damage resulting from accident, misuse, abnormal use, abnormal conditions, improper storage, exposure to liquid, moisture, dampness, sand or dirt, neglect, or unusual physical, electrical or electromechanical stress.'

In May, the first mobile phone designed for four to nine-year-olds was launched by OwnFone.

The 1stFone was dubbed 'dumbphone for smart parents' and is the size of a credit card and weighs 40g.

It can only make and receive calls, and it doesn't have a screen - instead it has the names of up to 12 close friends and family shown in a list with corresponding physical buttons.

The latest model from OwnFone, released this week, replaces this list of contacts with photos of each contact.

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