You can usually spot a seasoned on-site computer technician by their kit. Amongst the plethora of cables and handheld form factors – the keen eye may observe a clip-on bottle of hand sanitizer. One thing you learn quickly when servicing peoples devices is
Humans Are Filthy Germ Bags
And it’s no wonder given how frequently we use our machines AND where we use them. When was the last time you took a crap and didn’t use your phone? Go on, I’ll wait…
So when studies come out saying the average keyboard is 400x [more germy] than a toilet seat and cell phones contain 10x more bacteria than toilet seats it comes as no surprise. When people have the decency to cover their mouths when they cough & sneeze at their desk, it redirects that energy (read: disease-carrying mist) usually down, onto their keyboards.
Those boorish malcontents that do not cover, simply spray everything in front of them – screen, keyboard and all.
God help you if you use a shared computer or work station
But what about our mobile devices? Mobile devices have become a deeply personal object, containing a substantial amount of both personal and financial information. It’s akin to keeping your checkbook inside your diary and as such should be treated with the reverence it deserves.
So germs aside, I’ve never been too keen on someone handling my phone, much to the vexation of store personnel that require a barcode for an in-store pickup or coupon code.
How do you clean your electronics that you cannot get wet?
Most people would turn to screen wipes but these only remove smudges but do nothing to actually sanitize the device.
However, if you’re just looking to remove smudges on the go – these Nice ‘n Clean Lens Wipes are my favorite.
Phonesoap solves this problem quite well
Phonesoap is ostensibly a product that premiered on Shark Tank. Though if you’re like me, and would rather watch paint dry than the latest spin-off of pseudo-reality television – you may have gone unaware that you can clean your phone without water or a liquid of any kind.
Phonesoap uses UVC light in the form of UV-C LED Light Bulbs to sanitize your phone. But I bet right now you’re wondering, “what damage does Phonesoap due to my phone?” Rest easy, your precious super deluxe ultra cornea retina 4K UHD QLED AMOLED screen will be just fine. UV light can only damage phones with prolonged exposure.
UVC Light has a long track record of germicide
UVC light is a nonvisible light with the shortest wavelength of any light in the UV spectrum. You’re probably familiar with UVA & UVB as the public awareness of these skin cancer (and tan) causing wavelengths has increased. UVA & UVB light emitted from the Sun can reach the earth’s surface but the majority of UV-C light is blocked by the atmosphere.
UVC destroys the cells of viruses, bacteria, et al. due to electromagnetic radiation. It has been used to do so since the turn of the 20th century, in fact, the 1903 Nobel Prize was awarded to Niels Finsen for using UV light to combat tuberculosis.
TL:DR - UVC Light is the Dexter of Pathogens
But UV-C lights and “light wands” aren’t revolutionary; they’ve been available for quite some time. What Phonesoap did was design one for the commercial market instead of industrial/ medical – which means they made it cheaper. The industrial versions typically cost thousands of dollars, are large, made of a metal alloy and are pretty ugly by objective aesthetic design standards.
Juxtapose that against the Phonesoap 3 which sleek styling and beveled contours come in an array of colors to match just about any motif. Its beauty is matched only by its ease of operation. There are no switches, buttons or levers – open and close – so easy your grandmother could do it.
I chose white because it was on sale. Packaging is pretty standard. Brown cardboard box – which I appreciate because I (the consumer) didn’t have to absorb those ostentatious packaging costs. Cough…cough…unlike The Ring Doorbell.
The Phonesoap 3 is a compact unit and should blend in just about anywhere
Since we want it to be used daily, we opted to place it on our entry table. The goal is to make it a daily part of our routines – get home, drop your keys and throw your phone in the decontamination unit.
There are plenty of photos and videos that show Petri dishes with before and after swaps. They’ve been well documented by both users and clinical applications so I didn’t feel the need to conduct that part of the review.
The Phonesoap 3 comes with manual (wired) charging options; one USB-C port and one USB-A port (for you neanderthals).
There is a small hole designed into the frame that allows for your charging cable to pass through without impeding the hinge or operation since Phonesoap 3 only turns on when the lid is fully closed.
The operation is straight forward. Open the lid > Place Your Device (or whatever) Inside > Close Lid > Wait Ten Minutes (until the light on the top goes out) > Done
It is not capable of fast charging devices and is therefore just a novelty selling proposition. There is a wireless charging Phonesoap available but with so many issues with 3rd party wireless chargers, (advertised vs actual current & amperage). I always recommend using your manufacturer designated chargers (and even those are not completely absolved of issues). I know the cost difference makes it tempting but this was a lesson learned the hard way.
And it can accommodate all of the largest phones currently on the market. My Note 9 with Spigen Case (not the super slim one) still has plenty of room.
But I have one major grievance
The interior dimensions for depth are only 7/8 of an inch. Therefore you are severely limited to what you can sanitize. Sure, small jewelry like necklaces and bracelets are no problem but rings with large faces, such as a signet ring, could be an issue. I was particularly disappointed when my super slim eyeglasses were just a ⅛ inch too big and I just know these things are filthy.
The Phonesoap 3 convinced me to purchase it because of all the dangerous pathogens that lurked on my phone but what about all the other things that we touch just as frequently? What of our tablets, eyewear, sunglasses, remote controls and watches?
My family and I were just walking Staph infections just waiting to happen!
Thankfully the clever product engineers at Phonesoap had just what we needed, Phonesoap XL! Double the space and double the price!
But honestly, this is the Phonesoap product that I should have purchased but I didn’t think it through at the time. Hopefully, this is a mistake you can avoid after reading this Phonesoap review.
While it’s true, the Phonesoap XL is the more expensive and uglier version. It’s where the real practicality and most “bang for your buck” lies. It’s almost a must-have for parents with small children, the walking (or crawling) disease magnets that they are.
No more throwing out dropped pacifiers or feeling guilty about reusing them
Though it’s worth noting, the Phonesoap 3, Phonesoap XL or any other flavor Phonesoap does not remove smudges. Just like a “streak-free shine” doesn’t mean an object is clean.
If you’re looking for a phone that is both clean of germs and looks brand new then I recommend using Screen Mom’s All Natural Screen Cleaner.
It’s 99.3% organic but that 0.7% is arsenic. Kidding! It’s probably some sodium preservative but it doesn’t leave a residue like most screen cleaners – it’s safe for all screen types and most importantly does an amazing job!
Have you ever tried to clean a 65” flat screen with those little lens wipes?! It’s basically an exercise in futility. The large microfiber cloth and whatever this Screen Mom cleaning solution is does a great job, quickly.
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