A Water Sensor in iPhone and iPod Touch

Discussion in 'MacBytes.com News Discussion' started by MacBytes, Oct 12, 2007.

  1. MacBytes macrumors bot

    Jul 5, 2003
  2. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Jan 6, 2004
    a smart move on their part overall to stop people abusing the warranty. i just don't sit well with the placement due to it being on the external part of the devices.
  3. jayducharme macrumors 68030


    Jun 22, 2006
    The thick of it
    Exactly. If I were walking down the street with the iPhone in my shirt pocket and got caught in a brief rainstorm, water could easily slip into the headphone jack. Yet that tiny amount wouldn't do any damage and shouldn't void my warranty. Why not have the sensor on the circuit board inside?
  4. superleccy macrumors 6502a


    Oct 31, 2004
    That there big London
    That's actually a horrible move.

    I know of at least one company that, when their warranty/care department is over-stretched or over-budget, they reject handfuls of claims citing "water damage" to get them back on-target. It's basically impossible for the consumer to prove otherwise.

    It would be easy for these sensors to become wet (rain, condensation) without actually damaging the device. It would be even easier for an unscrupulous employee in a claims department to drop a spot of liquid on the sensor.

  5. Dustman macrumors 65816


    Apr 17, 2007
    While this would stop some people trying to get a free replacement after soaking their iPod/Phone, the stickers that change color are available in many places, including eBay
  6. Benjamindaines macrumors 68030


    Mar 24, 2005
    A religiously oppressed state
    Well I just looked, and I don't think it's a water sensor. I guess the only thing left to do is have someone take a dead iPhone (perhaps one that was f***ed by hacking or ripping it open on iDay) and see if it changes.
  7. samh004 macrumors 68020


    Mar 1, 2004
    I'd be nicer if they had shown a before and after shot of water-colour-changes.

    I'd love to know how much water you need to make an impact, Asia is quite a humid spot, how can I be sure that an iPod touch that is faulty wont be refused service due to 90% humidity one day.
  8. boss1 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 8, 2007
    So Apple spent money on putting a water sensor in every one of the millions of iPhones they manufacture at a cost of X? for the .000001 percentage of persons that might damage their phone due to water submission?

    I don't know what the exact numbers but it does seem far fetched. I think it's just coincidence that a piece of cloth? that prevents debris (dust etc) from entering the iphone is also designed for the purpose of water detection
  9. zlt9333 macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2007
    A few weeks ago my iPhone touch screen broke and I took it to the Apple Store's Genius Bar and I noticed the Mac Genius look into the headphone jack before he gave me a new iPhone. I wondered what he was looking at, and now I can assume that the watermark was what he was checking.
  10. Mr. Zorg macrumors regular

    Mr. Zorg

    Sep 5, 2007
    Seems to be pretty common in cell phone's at any rate. My last couple have had them, usually under the battery.
  11. MacUser4_20 macrumors regular

    Oct 8, 2004
    This is nothing new for the cell phone industry, almost all Motorola's that I know of have these tabs inside them in various places. Interesting about the touch though.
  12. scandalous sc macrumors newbie

    Sep 20, 2007
    That "sensor" isn't really a sensor, it's a sticker that changes to a pink reddish color when water or any liquid contacts it. This sticker is on almost all AT&T/Cingular phones (I'm not sure of other carriers) usually in the battery compartment.
    I've had to call a couple of times over the last 2 years to get warranty replacements on different phones and each time I was asked to look under the battery for a white or red dot. If you tell them it's white they proceed to replace the phone or service it. If you tell them it's red they tell you about water damage done to the phone and it not being eligible for warranty service.
  13. pilotkev1 macrumors member

    Jun 25, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    "Sensor" my ass. It's just an indication of more water than should be there.
  14. A Pittarelli macrumors 6502

    Jun 1, 2007
    thats actually pretty neat, though i doubt thats what its for
  15. lofight macrumors 68000


    Jun 16, 2007
    it's a little like the spoons that i got with the cereals, when the spoon touches milk it becomes pink!!
  16. solvs macrumors 603


    Jun 25, 2002
    LaLaLand, CA
    Glad I'm not in WA anymore. I'm in sunny Southern CA now. Where it's currently raining. :eek:
  17. Sly macrumors 6502


    Nov 30, 2003
    Airstrip One
    I took my iPT sailing last week and it got (unintentionally) soaked, salt water as well. The little white disk is still white and the IPT still works too! We can safely say therefore that if the little white disk is water sensitive, then it takes a little more than a spattering of rain to make it change colour.
  18. Telp macrumors 68040


    Feb 6, 2007
    This does not surprise me. All phone companies are ding this now. Its just a fact of life. In one way it makes sense, in others not so much. Its a great idea to have it where it is. First diagnoses. Don't even have to crack open a phone if they don't need to.
  19. aardwolf macrumors 6502

    May 30, 2007
    The same thing happened to me, and the genius actually said "it looks like you didn't get it wet" while he looked in that hole with a flashlight.

  20. TwoSyllables macrumors newbie

    Jun 25, 2007
    Not true. I dropped my iPhone in a puddle and it was acting all weird. When i turned it off, it just kept restarting itself...so clearly there was enough water in it to cause some damage.

    But the disc is still white.
  21. TheNightPhoenix macrumors 6502

    Dec 16, 2005
    I just looked deep into the middle of my ipod classic jack and there is a white circle, but no on my 5G iPod.
    I wonder if this is the same thing?

    I might drop a little water in to see.
  22. mustang_dvs macrumors 6502a


    Feb 9, 2003
    Durham, NC
    I've verified the info with a friend of mine who is in the know.

    The white disc in the bottom of the headphone jack is a moisture indicator -- half of it turns pinkish-red when exposed to water.
  23. JeffTL macrumors 6502a

    Dec 18, 2003
    My Motorola Razr has one of these under the battery -- when I had a non-liquid-related return, they asked on the phone about the color of the sticker and the battery and SIM contacts. That makes sense -- but as others have said, a bit of condensation or sweat could probably trigger the color change on the Apple external one.
  24. piecewise macrumors newbie

    May 22, 2006
    It is NOT a water sensor.

    Unfortunately, I completely submerged my iPhone in my dog's water bowl. (It was in my top pocket. When I bent over, it slipped out.) The iPhone, miraculously, is working great. No signs of problems a week later.

    The point here is, I just looked, and that white thing is still white, not red. So it's not a water sensor.

    "I've verified the info with a friend of mine who is in the know. The white disc in the bottom of the headphone jack is a moisture indicator -- half of it turns pinkish-red when exposed to water."

    In the know? "In the know" is me -- who dropped a phone in a full bowl of water for a few seconds. Don't lie just to have something to say.
  25. AngelJo008 macrumors newbie

    Jul 15, 2007
    for those of you who have dropped your iphone in water--let's think about this....when you drop something into water with a hole as small as the iPhone jack...air is present. unless there is ventilation on the other side of the hole, water will not get in easily. So, theoretically, unless the iPhone is submerged for a good period of time (ie: not simply splashed or quickly dropped in and then out of water/liquid) then I can't see water getting into the hole directly. As stated by someone else, we really need to take one that is no longer functioning and take a dropper and place water directly into the hole onto the "sensor". Just my 2 cents on the convo.

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