Xiaomi have finally launched in the UK and have kicked things off in style with their latest flagship devices; the Xiaomi Mi 8 and Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro. Now, if you haven’t already seen, the Mi 8 Pro comes with a really unique translucent finish that allows you to see the inner workings of the device. But is the Xiaomi Mi 8and Mi 8 Pro water resistant?
The Xiaomi Mi 8 and Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro are not officially water resistant and do not have an IP rating. That said, both devices are draped in Corning Gorilla Glass 5; a toughened glass that provides an extra layer of safety, offering very mild resistance from water.
What is Corning Gorilla Glass 5?
Corning Gorilla Glass is a chemically strengthened glass that is crafted to provide strong levels of damage resistance to a host of mobiles, laptops and wearable devices.
The glass has been designed to be thin and light and comes with optical clarity and touch sensitivity, so much so that using your device shouldn’t feel any different than if Corning Gorilla Glass hadn’t been included at all.
Indeed, many of the devices that you have used in the past have probably come fit with this protection. Samsung, Motorola, LG, Huawei and Sony are some of the many manufacturers to adopt Corning’s Gorilla Glass, and the durable glass can be found on laptops and smartwatches as well as mobile devices.
Most importantly, Corning Gorilla Glass 5 provides fantastic protection; allowing devices to survive 1.6-meter, shoulder-height drops onto hard, rough surfaces up to 80% of the time. The glass provides very high levels of resistance to scratch and sharp contact damage and claims to be 5x tougher than its rivals.
So in essence, think of Corning Gorilla Glass as a strong extra layer draped around mobile devices, providing extra resistance in the face of bumps and scratches.
Can the Xiaomi Mi 8 survive any water damage?
Now, as stated, the Xiaomi Mi and Mi 8 Pro have been officially announced as not being waterproof and thereby do not come with that trusty IP rating that many other devices are equipped with.
That said, the devices have been draped with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 and so you might therefore expect the Mi 8 to survive small amounts of water.
This extra layer is durable and resilient as outlined above and so, when you think about it as an extra layer of protection to your device, you get a rough idea of how this might work.
We certainly wouldn’t advise taking the Xiaomi Mi 8 or Mi 8 Pro swimming with you, but it should be able to cope with light rain and vertical splashes. It’s always best to avoid this where possible and act with due care and diligence.
Why do Xiaomi not make their devices water resistant?
It’s not just the Xiaomi Mi 8 and Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro; Xiaomi have not crafted any of their flagship devices with water resistance or an IP rating.
Indeed, it was only a couple of years ago that Xiaomi’s founder, Lei Jun, addressed the issue and outlined a number of reasons why Xiaomi continue down this road.
Firstly, Lei Jun claimed that adding waterproofing to devices makes them far costlier. Central to Xiaomi’s philosophy is the ethos of providing high specifications at a much more affordable price and adding water resistance to devices would mean that customers would have to pay 20-30% more than they currently do.
Similarly, Lei Jun believes that even minor damage to a phone, even if only a small crack, can cause the device to deteriorate and make waterproofing procedures wholly ineffective.
Even the smallest of cracks allows water to into a phone, damaging it from the inside – even if it is waterproof and crafted with a high IP rating.
What is an IP rating and is it important?
IP ratings are used to define levels of sealing effectiveness of electrical enclosures against intrusion from foreign bodies (e.g. dirt and dust) and moisture.
A rating is presented in the form of ‘IP’ (Ingress Protection) followed by two numbers, for example ‘IP68’.
The first number refers to protection against solids and ranges from 1 to 6, with a higher number providing far better levels of protection. For example, if something is rated 1 you can expect protection against solid objects over 50mm, whereas if it is rated 6 it is rated as dust tight.
Similarly, the second number refers to liquids and ranges from 1 to 8, with a ‘1’ rating protecting against vertically falling drops of water and an 8 protecting against the effects of long periods of immersion in water under pressure.
The Xiaomi Mi 8 is available from Clove as a UK or an EU Model, with either 64GB or 128GB of internal memory and 6GB RAM. Colour options include White, Black and Blue and prices begin at £400 including VAT.