At Kyocera, we know our rugged devices are built and tested to withstand harsh environments, water immersion, dust and other elements, but sometimes we hear stories from our customers about our devices defying expectations to an extreme. We recently heard from Roberta Espree from Atlanta, GA, whose Kyocera Hydro WAVE really lived up to its aquatic name. It went over a sea wall and took a whopping 16-hour swim in the ocean in Florida, and when she was finally able to fish it out of the water the next day, it was miraculously still working.
To be very clear, we cannot recommend or warranty this kind of treatment of our devices. The Hydro WAVE is certified to a standard called IP57, meaning it is only designed to survive immersion up to 30 minutes in fresh water up to 1 meter deep. Roberta’s story is not typical and if you own a Hydro WAVE, as they say on television, DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME!
Roberta is a Convention Services Manager for Embassy Suites in Atlanta. She was visiting the Doubletree on Rocky Point in Tampa Bay, Florida, on a business trip and decided to stay the weekend for fun. You can imagine her excitement when, while standing on the property’s sea wall, she saw a dolphin playing nearby in the waves. Roberta started recording video of the dolphin on her Hydro WAVE, running down the sea wall to get a better shot. A bad step into a hole, however, sent Roberta sprawling and her phone flew off the wall into the water below. As if losing her phone wasn’t bad enough, Roberta also lost the opportunity to record a manatee that surfaced just as she fell. Suffice to say she was dejected.
The next morning, Roberta shared her story with another hotel guest, who suggested that the tide was low and it might be worth trying to recover her phone. She and her friends went down to the sea wall and, amazingly, could see the phone on the ocean floor. With the tide out, it was now only about two feet underwater. With the help of the hotel’s engineering department and a long-handled net from the swimming pool, they were able to reach down from the sea wall and scoop the phone from the ocean below.
Immediately the crowd showered Roberta with advice. “Put it in a bag of rice,” said one friend. “Take out the battery and let it dry in the sun,” said another. Instead, Roberta pressed the phone’s power button. Jaws dropped when the phone sprang to life. Initially the phone’s speaker wasn’t working properly, but that resolved after a few hours on dry land and the phone worked like nothing ever happened. Roberta even watched the ill-fated video she had taken of the dolphin, only to discover that the phone had continued to record video for several minutes underwater after her fall.
“After dropping my phone in the ocean and seeing how the phone still functioned, I will not use anything but a Kyocera device,” Roberta said. When she went in to MetroPCS to get another phone recently, she “elected to remain with the product I could count on.”
Again, Kyocera’s devices are certified to withstand water immersion only according to their IP certifications, and are not designed to withstand extended periods of time underwater. With that said, this isn’t the first crazy story we’ve heard about our devices defying the odds and won’t be the last. We’re thrilled that Roberta’s phone survived and grateful for her loyalty to Kyocera.
For more information about Kyocera’s waterproof and rugged mobile devices, visit: https://www.kyoceramobile.com/phones/
John is director of corporate communications at Kyocera. He has worked on the Kyocera team shaping its communications strategy over the past 15 years – 13 of those years in-house and two with a Kyocera agency partner. John has always had a passion for writing and began his career as a newspaper reporter at the Whittier Daily News, part of a multi-paper syndicate in Los Angeles. When not working, he and his wife can usually be found coaching, shuttling, refereeing or cheering for his three sons and their numerous plays, concerts and sports teams.