I work at a hospital and as a result, I am constantly reminded of the objects not to handle when working in a clean environment. The list includes neck ties (we don't wear them; result), sleeves (our arms have to be naked below the elbow) and smartphones. Most of us have an idea about how dirty our cell 'phones can be, but if you don't, let me provide you with some insight. You see, our 'phones are very personal devices. We handle them frequently, we keep them in our pockets, handbags or purses, and then we handle them again. Some of us use our smartphones in places where we probably wouldn't eat (and I don't mean McDonalds, I mean restrooms here!). We carefully wash our hands during the day and then pick up our disease and pestilence-ridden smartphone: it turns out that our cell 'phones typically contain eighteen times more bacteria than a public restroom. They're sitting there, mocking you when you wipe the screen on your sleeve. Worse, apparently one in six contains fecal matter. I don't want to investigate how that's possible, but instead I'm going to swiftly switch to writing about the PhoneSoap product.
If you don't have a waterproof device, you might be wondering how you can clean up the device but luckily, PhoneSoap to the rescue! This $59.99 box is a specialized device charger that uses ultraviolet light to sterilize your device. It's available online and at some Staples branches and it's claimed to be able to kill 99.9% of bacteria on the 'phone. PhoneSoap also sell a portable microfiber cleaning pad and screen polish for $4.95 and $14.95 respectively.
PhoneSoap was originally crowdfunded via Kickstarter and it's been shown off earlier in the year at the CES, Consumer Electronics Show, Las Vegas in January. It's also recently been featured on Shark Tank, where Wesley LaPorte and Daniel Barnes were seeking $300,000 for 7.5% of the company, but ended up agreeing with QVC's Lori Greiner to sell 10% of the business for $300,000. The deal will see QVC selling the PhoneSoap: brace yourself!
Do you worry about your smartphone being a harbinger of disease? Have you ever handled somebody elses' smartphone and thought to wash your hands afterwards? Or do you figure what doesn't kill you will make you stronger? Let us know in the comments below.