Ever wonder why Xiaomi doesn’t make waterproof phones? Its founder explains

xiaomi waterproofing phones mi5 0022
With phone waterproofing on the rise, thanks in part to companies like Sony and Samsung popularizing the practice, some have asked when other companies would join the fray. One such company is Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi, one of the largest phone companies in the world, and its founder, Lin Jun, had some interesting insight on the subject.

According to Jun during a recent press event, waterproofing his company’s phones has the potential to backfire, since any damage phones receive could compromise the water protection they have. Even when the damage is not nearly as significant as a cracked screen or broken camera module, that protection could fade.

More relevant to how Xiaomi conducts its business, Jun said making Xiaomi phones waterproof would incur high manufacturing costs. To further illustrate this point, Xiaomi would consider waterproofing its phones if customers are willing to pay 20 to 30 percent of the additional cost required to add the feature.

Keep in mind that Xiaomi’s business model revolves selling its phones at such relatively low prices, thanks to multiple factors like continuing to sell older devices, having a mostly online-only presence, a small portfolio, and being located near Chinese manufacturing plants. Xiaomi has spent several years balancing all factors, and anything that even slightly bumps costs could upset that balance.

Whether you agree with Jun’s answers, however, is a separate point. From the Samsung Galaxy S7, to the Sony Xperia Z5, to even the Apple iPhone 6S, more and more big-name phones are beginning to handle the rain better than others. Waterproofing is by no means a make-or-break phone feature, but its increased usage over the years might mean that more people are actively seeking such a feature for their phones.


Razer’s Wireless Charger will turn your desk into gamer heaven

The Razer Wireless Charger adds colorful flair to your desk or bedside table. It works with any phone that supports Qi wireless charging -- with some quirks -- but is it worth the high price tag? We take a look.

Play your games whenever you want with a MicroSD card for your Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch uses cartridge-based games, but its internal storage may fill up quicker than you would think. Here's what you should consider when picking out a MicroSD card to expand your Switch's storage capacity.

Style up your MacBook Air with one of these great cases or sleeves

Whether you’re looking for added protection or a stylish flourish, you’re in the right place for the best MacBook Air cases. We have form-hugging cases, luxurious covers and padded sleeves priced from $10 to $130. Happy shopping!

Best tax software deals from TurboTax, H&R Block, and more

Do you dread doing your taxes? Luckily for you, there are plenty of tax software options available to guide you through the process. And guess what? Some of them are even on sale today! Check out deals from TurboTax, H&R Block, and…
Emerging Tech

The best solar chargers for your phone, tablet, and other battery-powered gear

Looking for a gizmo that can help you charge your phone while on the go? Here, we've outlined the best solar chargers on the market, whether you're looking to charge your phone once, twice, or three times over.

What is fixed wireless 5G? Here’s everything you need to know

Here's fixed wireless 5G explained! Learn what you need to know about this effective new wireless technology, when it's available, how much it costs, and more. If you're thinking about 5G, this guide can help!
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: camera with A.I. director, robot arm assistant

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Xbox app lets you access your console while away from home. Here's how

Microsoft's Xbox allows you to access your profile information and launch media content directly from your mobile device. Check out our quick guide on how to connect your smartphone to an Xbox One.

The best Apple Watch bands and straps to stylize your timepiece

If you have an Apple Watch, you know how easy it is to take off the strap it came with, so why not buy yourself another one? Here, we've gathered the best Apple Watch bands we've seen so far. There's something for everyone.

How to choose an iPad in 2019: A practical guide to Apple’s tablets

Selecting an iPad from Apple's lineup can be intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Our comprehensive guide should put the numbers and specs in practical, easy-to-understand terms. Find your ideal iPad with the help of our guide.

Apple resurrects the iPhone SE with brand-new units starting at $249

Apple quietly started selling the iPhone SE again, at even lower prices than when it was discontinued four months ago. Brand new units of the 32GB version are on sale for $249, while the 128GB version is going for $299.

Popular Android navigation apps are just Google Maps with ads, researcher says

A malware researcher found that 19 free Android navigation apps on the Google Play Store were nothing more than Google Maps, but with ads. One of the apps asked for a payment to remove the ads, while some of them presented security risks.

Google Maps will now help drivers stay within speed limits, avoid speed traps

Google Maps will now start showing speed limits and speed camera locations, so that drivers will not be flagged for speeding tickets. The new features arrive to the app years after they were introduced in Waze.

Text up a storm with the best messaging apps for iOS and Android

These days, most people tend to favor digital messages over phone calls. We have the best messaging apps that allow you to share photos and documents, send text messages, and more with end-to-end encryption.