July 9, 2020

Tips To Keeping Your Smartphone Safe

Written by erin

Tips & Tricks

Follow us along our #SummerSafety series, where we’ll be highlighting various tips for staying safe while using various digital channels. For more information on how TextNow is helping keeping customers safe, click here.

Summer is here and it's bringing the heat! Keep your smartphone safe with these essential tips for common phone mishaps.

Beware of the hot hot heat

Sun shining through trees

When the summer months hit, there are a few known rules for taking extra precautions in the heat, such as never leaving your pet in a hot car, making sure your groceries are promptly refrigerated, and always putting on sunscreen. But there is something else to consider when it comes to summer safety: your phone.

If you want to keep your smartphone safe this summer, be sure to avoid leaving it for extended periods of time in direct sunlight or in a parked car. Neither iPhones or Android phones are designed to withstand temperatures above 95° F, and if temperatures do exceed their ideal temperature range of 62° to 72° F, your phone may experience irreversible damage.

Keep in mind that without the AC turned on, a car will act like a greenhouse and the increase in temperature can be substantial on a hot day, even if it's in a shaded spot or off for a short period of time.

Smartphones and water don't mix

Sure, water-resistant phones exist and if you've got one you may choose to skip this tip. However, even water-resistant smartphones have their limitations so if your phone is dropped to the bottom of a lake while you're getting some beach time this summer, you may want to pay attention.

iphone taking video of stream

The age old rice trick

Disclaimer: There have been some mixed opinions about whether or not this rice trick is truly helpful in the resuscitation of a water damaged phone. If you're not comfortable trying this option, you can bring your phone directly to a service tech — although I would recommend turning the phone off and removing the SIM and SD card still as quickly as possible, to get professional assistance immediately. If your phone has been submerged in water, the first thing you'll want to do is—of course—remove it from the water immediately. Then you'll want to remove any SIM and SD card (if you have one) from the phone, and if possible, remove the battery as well. Not all smartphones have batteries that can be removed, so do not force the phone open to remove the battery if that is not an option for your device. Next, dab the phone dry with a paper towel or cloth, wrap it in paper towel and then submerge the whole phone into a bag or bowl of uncooked rice. The paper towel will help keep any rice dust from becoming gunky in the phone.

The dry rice will absorb any remaining moisture from the crevices of the phone, but the key here is to be patient. You'll want to leave the phone submerged in the rice for at least 1-2 full days before returning the battery and trying to turn it back on.If for any reason the phone is still not turning back on after it's been dried out, you may want to reach out to a service tech in case the battery itself has been damaged and needs replacing.

A proactive option

To avoid having to deal with the uncertainty of bringing your phone back from the dead using a pantry item, consider taking a proactive approach if you know you'll be around water where your phone may be in danger of getting damaged.

A waterproof phone case or pouch could keep your smartphone safe and save you a lot of trouble if you've got protection for your phone before to the pool or the beach. Or a more cost-effective method would be to simply keep it in a sealed plastic sandwich bag, giving you the peace of mind that it's safe should you drop it in water.

Set up phone tracking for free

Hand holding a Compass

Luckily modern day GPS means you wont need a compass to find your phone

The Google Find My Device app (Android) or Find My iPhone app (iOS) could be a life saver if your phone is ever lost or stolen — the key is to download and set up the app before it's misplaced.

Both of these apps provide slightly different features, but what they have in common is they will allow you to track the location of your smartphone from another device should you need to find it. If the app is not already installed and set up on your phone prior to it being misplaced you may never see it again. So why not take a simple step to keep your smartphone safe? Both apps are free to use too!Want to learn more? You can check out our Online Gaming Safety Tips here to ensure you're being safe this season both outside and inside the house.