Technology and liquids has never been a good mix, especially if it involves a washing machine!
Coming back from one of my morning runs, I forgot to unclip the Apple Shuffle music player from the running top, and so in it went, inside the washing machine for a good half-hour soaking.
Unsurprisingly, the player refused to work afterwards, and had no choice but to replace it.
Whatever the event, technology is never too far away; be it a set of Bluetooth speakers at the poolside or barbecue, a Smartphone at the seaside, or a tablet while you relax in a hot soaking bath.
In all these events, there’s always a chance that water, alcohol or some other liquid could play havoc with your equipment, and the tech giants have cottoned on to this. Which is why you’ll now see a lot of devices labelled as water resistant. But the question is, how resistant are they? Well this is determined by the IP Rating…
IP stands for Ingress Protection, and the higher the number, the greater the protection.
Referring to the table below, the first digit (from zero to six) indicates the protection against solids (five or above is dust). The second digit (from zero to eight) is for water. An X means that it doesn’t have a rating.

For example, the Bose Sport Earbuds has an IP rating of IPX4, which means they can survive splashes of rain but haven’t been dust tested.
An Apple iPhone 12 on the other hand, is rated IP68, which means it can withstand temporary immersion in liquids with a maximum depth of two metres for up to 30 minutes. And the six means it’s also dustproof, which’ll be handy if you’re at the beach.
Water resistant is very common on expensive Smartphones, but some mid-range models are starting to offer this now too.