iPhoneitis epidemic?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by mcdj, Aug 30, 2008.

  1. mcdj macrumors 604

    mcdj

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    #1
    It occurred to me today, in an admittedly bored moment, that with the millions of iPhones out there, (hundreds of?) thousands of them are being brought back into the Apple store for one issue or another, if for nothing else but tutorial help. These issues/tutorials are being handled individually by Geniuses, and typically involve touching the phone all over, maybe even raising it to the ear.

    It's been said many times that cell phones are a breeding ground for bacteria. Since the iPhone has no buttons for the bacteria to burrow under, they're all sitting right there on the glass, waiting for the right moment to infect some unsuspecting phone fondler.

    Given the sheer number of iPhones out there (and counting), and the focused group of trouble shooters (Apple Geniuses field the majority of problems), how long before we start seeing sick Apple employees? An employee at an Apple store in NYC must handle at least 50 phones a day. Heck, even shoe salesmen are starting to wear rubber gloves these days. Will we see Apple employees doing the same?
     
  2. James L macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2004
    #2
    If they wash their hands (which they should be doing after each bathroom visit anyway) then they will be fine. Think of all the door handles someone touches in a day, all of the counters you touch when purchasing a product, all of the bus or subway seats you sit on, etc.

    Just for interest, however....

    I work in health care, and several tests have shown that the most contaminated part of an ambulance is usually the steering wheel!
     
  3. mcdj thread starter macrumors 604

    mcdj

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    #3
    Door knobs, counters, bus seats...these things are no doubt bacteria laden, but they are not breathed on, spittled on, or pressed against warm greasy ears and acne ridden teenage skin like a cell phone is.

    If the Apple employees washed their hands after every consultation, that would be one thing...I'm willing to bet that the majority of them do not.
     
  4. sibruk macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2007
    Location:
    UK+US
    #4
    I can just see the tabloid headlines:

    I CAUGHT MRSA OFF OF MY IPHONE
     
  5. Lau Guest

    #5
    I think overall people are far too paranoid about germs, so I really wouldn't worry about it. If anything, the Apple store employees will probably build up a healthy immunity to common bugs.

    Your hands will be far better at carrying germs than a smooth phone, and most of those bus seats and doorknobs will have been touched by someone how has just picked their nose or scratched their arse anyway – everything you touch has had someone else spreading god knows what over it. Germs get everywhere. Lucky our bodies are so good at fighting them off, eh?
     
  6. Foamer macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    #6
    One thing that I have noticed was that my psycho ex-GF, and her family (they are all health freaks, only believe in homeopathic medicine, think the microwave is out to kill you; I actually got yelled at by her mother once for standing within 10 feet of it), they were all getting sick, all the time, while I would be around them every day all day, and never once got sick.

    Has anyone ever thought that maybe being overly health-conscious is actually worse for your health? If you worry about all this crap, and avoid it; how are you going to build up your immune system and become immune to all the stuff out there?

    Im not dirty by any means, but I dont go out of my way to avoid stupid stuff like germs on a phone. Guess what? The last time I was sick (with anything other than a sinus infection), was over 9 years ago. The psycho ex and her family were sick almost once a month.
     
  7. iEric87 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2008
    #7
    Because I have not spent all my time here does not mean my REAL WORLD experience does not compare. I encourage you to try the same.
     
  8. daflake macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2008
    #8
    Just a little over the top and lacking a bit of science...

    Actually in order for those germs to harm a person they would have to actually touch some portion of mucus membrane (eyes, nose, mouth) for them to enter the body. So, even if an Apple employee touched 50 phones of sick people while working and never touching the above (with no cuts on hands) he/she would be fine as long as he/she washed their hands afterwards.

    Going by what you say, all hospital staff would always be sick. :p

    I think this has all been covered on this forum before and Americans are germaphobes.... Mainly because we let companies like Purell and Lysol scare us into buying their products. Purell is so overused and really shouldn't even be in a persons pocket except for that rare emergency where you can't get to soap and water. Clean is one thing but what most people do to themselves is far beyond clean.
     
  9. mcdj thread starter macrumors 604

    mcdj

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    #9
    I'm not quite sure if you're trying to confuse me into submission, or just confuse me; either way, it's working. I hereby bow to your cohesion-free admonitions.
     
  10. affenage macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    #10
    This has actually been scientifically proven. If it weren't Saturday AM, and I wasn't so lazy I would provide you a link to some of the papers on it. It is also widely assumed amongst immunologists that the alarming rise in serious allergies in children is due to over-protecting them from normal exposures to household germs and dirt.

    Handling phones - even in the busiest Apple store in NYC is no worse than opening the handle of a door in any public place. The door handle is likely to have more people touching it than the total number of phones any one employee would handle.
    Unbroken skin and normal hygiene is amazingly good at preventing illnesses from such passive exposures. The main culprits passed through indirect hand or mouth contact (like that on phones and door handles) are the relatively innocuous cold viruses.
    Acne is caused by innocuous bacteria, and is not considered contagious.


    end of science class for now.

    sue
     
  11. cobaltchroma macrumors regular

    cobaltchroma

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    #11
    gosh, first the kill switch and now an epidemic!
    they really ARE trying to kill us!
     
  12. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #12
    If I surmise correctly iEric87 is 21, and probably thought your "acne-ridden" comment was somehow directed right at him.

    I'm not so much a germophobe as I am a gunkophobe. I've never really liked the feel of hand lotion or oily things in general. Don't ask me why, I just don't. And people's faces, like it or not, are pretty oily (including my own). Because I'm an early adopter, people seem to like to hand their iPhones and other cell phones to me to look at when they're having trouble with something, and having to swipe my fingers across an oily slate of glass is not a sensation I like.

    But rather than bug people about it, I just carry with me some of those disposable packets of presoaked eyeglass cleaners that LensCrafters sells for about $.18 apiece when bought in bulk (though they're on sale right now, 50% off, stock up!). They're specifically formulated to clean facegunk off glass and plastic without harming the surface or leaving behind any residue, so they're perfect for the job. The gunked cloth goes in the trash, the person gets handed back a clean phone, I don't get grossed out, and everyone wins.

    I'm glad I don't work as an Apple genius though. I'd go broke buying eyeglass cleaner.
     
  13. srl7741 macrumors 68020

    srl7741

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    Location:
    In my world
    #13
    My solution alltho I'm not worried by germs is this: Clean my iPhone b4 handing off and clean it again after getting it back.

    I'm safe :)
     
  14. iEric87 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2008
    #14
    Your powers of deduction and observation are impeccable. But until you show me a pic of someone who has acne all up the side of their face from their iPhone's oil, then I'll be a believer. That would be a good thread, huh? Be funny as hell to see...lol.

    UPDATE: On top of selling iPhone Apple Care Protection there can be a discounted package for ProActiv solutions and anti-microbial screen wipes.
     
  15. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #15
    Hospitals are a slightly different situation than other situations... many of us probably come into contact with things like MRSA on a not too infrequent basis, in small amounts, while we're in the hospital. But we health care providers generally have healthy immune systems, and don't have a lot of open wounds. So we don't get sick. But we do act as a vector for transmitting harmful bacteria to our patients, who often don't have healthy immune systems and do have open wounds....

    The bacteria floating around outside hospitals is generally somewhat more innocuous. And I do agree with your basic point... most of us are not at great risk of becoming sick as a result of bacteria transferred through casual contact. Those who are, as well as people in situations where they may be vectors to others (healthcare people, food handlers, etc) have to take special precautions....

    As for the iPhone and Geniuses... well, the geniuses have been touching all the other stuff that people bring from their homes to them before there were iPhones, so I somehow doubt an uptick in serious illness for them....
     
  16. mcdj thread starter macrumors 604

    mcdj

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    #16
    Good point. Keyboards are home to super-bacteria, raised on a steady diet of Funyuns bits, Pepperidge Farm Milano crumbs and spilled Yoohoo.

    Mmm. Keyboard Yoohoo.
     
  17. daflake macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2008
    #17
    First, my hat is off to you for such a noble and generally thankless job. I have actually considered a career change into the medical field (I was looking at some PA programs) as I have grown tired of the IT industry.

    The overall point that I was trying to make was done so while trying to keep it simple but I agree with you 110%. ;)
     
  18. rockinrocker macrumors 65816

    rockinrocker

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    #18
    hey!

    what happened to my Chester A. Arthritis joke?
    :confused::confused::confused:
     
  19. mcdj thread starter macrumors 604

    mcdj

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
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    NYC
    #19
    It appears that some of the grumpier bits of the thread were pruned. I think your joke was in response to one of the grumpy bits. :rolleyes:
     
  20. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #20
    And yours are not, it appears. There was nothing directed at you personally. So, chill.

    Never said that. All I said was, I don't like the feel of oily things. So again, chill.
     
  21. SoSII macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    #21


    Im sure the iPhone update 2.1 will fix this also!!;)
     

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