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The best waterproof phones in 2022

iPhone 13 Pro Max review
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The best waterproof phones have become commonplace, offering peace of mind in case you drop your device in standing water. They used to be hideous things, but today, they're sleek devices that can shrug off splashes and even be submerged without problems. And many of the top smartphones available right now feature some degree of water resistance.

Owning a water-resistant phone means that you can snap pictures by the pool or use your handset in the rain without fear it'll be damaged. Look for an IP67 or IP68 rating — both mean the device can withstand being submerged in water for 30 minutes, at varying depths.

Of course, even the best waterproof phones are completely immune to water damage. Every device on this list — and, indeed, every smartphone you can buy today that is considered water resistant — has some IP rating attached to it, that conveys a degree of ingress protection. The first digit in an IP rating with dust protection — a "6" means the phone is dust tight, which is standard these days — whereas the second pertains to liquids. You'll want to look for at least a "7" to connote water resistance. Anything below that might mean the device can withstand water sprays and splashes, but not immersion.

What are the best waterproof phones?

All of Apple's iPhone 13 models offer the same high-quality water resistance, but only one phone can take the crown. Therefore we have placed the iPhone 13 Pro Max on top, since it offers the best smartphone experience as well as an IP68 resistance rating. The iPhone 13 is a good alternative if you don't want to pay for the Pro features, as is last year's iPhone 12 if you want to save even more.

The latest models from Samsung and Google — from the Galaxy S21 Ultra and Pixel 6 Pro — have been built to that 5-foot spec, which technically qualifies for IP68. That means submersion protection in more than 1 meter of water — the official depth can vary from phone to phone. IP67 is anything up to and including 1 meter.

On the cheaper side, unfortunately most models from Motorola, Nokia and even OnePlus (to a certain extent) tend to skip true water resistance in favor of water repellence through the application of a nano-coating. That might save you in the event someone spills a drink on your phone, but it won't help your phone should it sink to the bottom of a pool. You won't find such devices on our list of the best waterproof phones. However, for budget-friendly water-resistant phones, then look to the iPhone SE (2020) and Google Pixel 5a, for $399 and $449 respectively.

The best waterproof phones you can buy today

iPhone 13 Pro MaxEditor's Choice

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best waterproof phone

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 20 feet (6 meters) for 30 minutes
Display: 6.7-inch OLED (2778 x 1284)
Rear camera: 12MP wide (ƒ/1.6), 12MP ultra-wide (ƒ/2.4), 12MP telephoto (ƒ/2.2)
Front camera: 12MP (ƒ/2.2)
CPU: A14 Bionic
Battery life (Hrs:Mins): 12:16

Reasons to buy

+
Best-in-class cameras
+
Best performance of any current phone
+
Amazing battery life

Reasons to avoid

-
Slow charging

Just as you'd hope from a phone as luxurious as the iPhone 13 Pro Max, it promises to keep your phone dry. With an IP68 water/dust resistance rating, Apple promises all its new phones, including the iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini, will withstand submersion in 6 metres (about 20 feet) of water for up to 30 minutes. That should be plenty of time to retrieve your phone if you've dropped it.

These impressive waterproof credentials are joined by the best phone cameras and performance of any phone we've tested, a fantastic new 120Hz display and improved battery life. Although the iPhone 13 Pro is almost identical to the Pro Max, the larger phone still takes the top spot of the range. Its larger display and longer battery life may be the only differences, but they're enough to make it the ultimate iPhone experience you can get right now.

Read our full iPhone 13 Pro Max review.

iPhone SE 2022 back of phone against stonebest value

(Image credit: Future)
The most affordable water-resistant phone

Specifications

Water resistance: IP67; max 3.3 feet (1 meter) for 30 minutes
Display: 4.7-inch LCD (1334x750)
Rear camera: 12MP wide (ƒ/1.8)
Front camera: 7MP (ƒ/2.2)
CPU: A15 Bionic

Reasons to buy

+
Fastest performance for the money
+
Very good photo quality
+
More durable design

Reasons to avoid

-
Small display with big bezels
-
No Night mode for camera

The new third-generation iPhone SE packs the lightning-fast A15 Bionic processor from 2019's flagship iPhones in the body of the iPhone 8. And because it repurposes the iPhone 8's design, it also benefits from the iPhone 8's water resistance. This phone is built to IP67 spec, meaning it can withstand submersion in 3.3 feet (1 meter) of water for a half hour.

But what makes the iPhone SE's water resistance so special is the handset's bargain price. At $429, the iPhone SE is the cheapest IP-rated, water-resistant iPhone you can buy. (And it beats out many cheap Android phones, too.) It also supports wireless charging and sports an aluminum-and-glass design, making it extremely premium compared to similarly-priced Android phones. 

Read our full iPhone SE 2022 review.

iPhone 13

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best waterproof phone for most people

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 20 feet (6 meters) for 30 minutes
Display: 6.1-inch OLED (2532 x 1170)
Cameras (back/front): 12MP main (f/1.6), 12MP ultrawide (f/2.4)
Front camera: 12MP (f/2.2)
CPU: A15 Bionic
Battery life (Hrs:Mins): 10:33

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent photography
+
Strong performance
+
Bright display

Reasons to avoid

-
No 120Hz refresh rate
-
Sluggish charging

While it lacks a few features, the iPhone 13 still keeps up with its Pro siblings on the waterproof front. It's also capable of lasting for half an hour under 20 feet of water, and like last year's iPhone 12 series, it makes use of a Ceramic Shield display that should prevent screen damage if the phone gets dropped on solid ground instead of in water.

The iPhone 13 doesn't have the same 120Hz display as the Pro models, and it also misses out on the telephoto camera and LiDAR sensor again. However the screen picture quality, powerful chipset and overall quality of experience are the same. About the only real limitation with the iPhone 13 is its disappointing charging speed, which most non-Apple phones beat with ease.

Read our full iPhone 13 review

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra with S Pen

(Image credit: Future)
The best waterproof phone for Android fans

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 5 feet (1.5 meters) for 30 minutes
Display: 6.8-inch OLED (3200x1400)
Rear camera: 108MP main (ƒ/1.8), 12MP ultrawide (ƒ/2.2), 10MP telephoto with 3x zoom (ƒ/2.4), 10MP telephoto with 10x zoom (ƒ/4.9)
Front camera: 40MP (ƒ/2.2)
CPU: Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
Battery life: 9:50

Reasons to buy

+
IP68 water resistances up to 1.5 meters
+
Built-in S Pen
+
Adaptive refresh rate for display

Reasons to avoid

-
Bulky
-
Battery life worse than last year

Like other Galaxy flagships, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra features IP68 water resistance, so you can drop it in up to 5 feet of water without worry. But the real value in this phablet comes with its other features — it’s the first phone outside of the Galaxy Note lineup to have a built-in S Pen. You’ll also find two telephoto lenses on the back of the Galaxy S22 Ultra to help you capture more detail when you zoom in on a shot.

The 6.8-inch AMOLED screen offers a dynamic refresh rate that adjusts depending on what you’re doing — scrolling through web pages might max out the refresh rate at 120Hz, for example, for a smoother experience.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra review.

best waterproof phones: iPhone 12

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Top water resistance for less

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 20 feet (6 meters) for 30 minutes
Display: 6.1-inch OLED (2532x1170)
Rear camera: 12MP wide (ƒ/1.6), 12MP ultrawide (ƒ/2.4)
Front camera: 12MP (ƒ/2.2)
CPU: A14 Bionic
Battery life: 8:25

Reasons to buy

+
Same durability as iPhone 12 Pro models
+
Impressive dual cameras
+
Attractive design

Reasons to avoid

-
Below-average battery life

It's over a year old now, but the iPhone 12 still features the same level of waterproofing as the iPhone 13 line - an Apple-tested resistance to 30 minutes of being submerged under 20 feet of water, and an IP68 rating.

Its Apple A14 chipset is still more powerful than any Android phone even if it's been superceded by the A15 chip. Its dual cameras still take fantastic pictures too, and once updated to iOS 15 it'll have all the iPhone 13's software tricks to play with as well. However it does have even worse battery life compared to the already lacking base iPhone 13. The price drop to $699 might make that a worthwhile sacrifice though.

Read our full iPhone 12 review.

Back view of OnePlus 10 Pro

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best Android phone for the money

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68, 1.5 m for 30 minutes
Rear cameras: 48MP (f/1.8) main, 50MP (f/2.2) ultrawide, 8MP (f/2.4) 3.3x telephoto
Front camera: 32MP (f/2.2)
Display: 6.7-inch AMOLED (3216 x 1440)
CPU: Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
Battery life (Hrs:Mins): 11:52 (120Hz), 12:39 (60Hz)

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent battery life
+
Beautiful new design
+
Lower price than last year

Reasons to avoid

-
Telephoto is just 8MP
-
Only T-Mobile version has IP rating

The OnePlus 10 Pro is the newest and hottest Android flagship. In fact, it’s one of our favorite new devices thanks to its beautiful design, awesome display, great cameras, and excellent battery life. And with an IP68 rating, you can be sure the OnePlus 10 Pro will survive an unfortunate dunk in some water — assuming you get the T-Mobile version.

We think this is the Android phone to get for most people because of its incredibly appealing $899 price tag. The cameras are the best we’ve ever seen on a OnePlus phone, even going up against the likes of the Pixel 6 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max quite well.

OnePlus got a lot right this year, including the software. OxygenOS 12.1 is the best version of OnePlus’ Android skin that we’ve seen. It’s smooth and fast, especially when paired with the 120Hz display.

Read our full OnePlus 10 Pro review.

pixel 6 pro laying flat on book

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
A premium Android camera experience

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 1.5 meters for 30 minutes
Display: 6.7-inch OLED (3120x1440)
Rear cameras: 50MP main (ƒ/1.85), 12MP ultrawide (ƒ/2.2), 48MP telephoto (ƒ/3.5) with 4x optical zoom
Front camera: 11.1MP (ƒ/2.2)
CPU: Tensor
Battery life (Hrs:Mins): 7:49

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible cameras
+
Tensor performs well
+
Beautiful new design
+
More affordable than other flagships

Reasons to avoid

-
Shorter battery life than competitors

If you’re looking for the best Android camera experience, then the Pixel 6 Pro is for you. Not only does it sport IP68 water resistance, but you get the all-new Tensor chip and a fresh new design. In fact, the Pixel 6 Pro is the best phone Google has ever made.

From the impressive hardware to the excellent software, the Pixel 6 Pro is the best Android experience. While it can only survive 1.5 meters, it’ll still get through a dunk. Regardless, this is a great phone and it’s hundreds less than other flagships.

Read our full Google Pixel 6 Pro review.

Pixel 6

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
Stellar cameras for less

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 1.5 meters for 30 minutes
Display: 6.4-inch OLED (2400 x 1080; 90Hz)
Rear cameras: 50MP main (ƒ/1.85), 12MP ultrawide (ƒ/2.2)
Front camera: 8MP (ƒ/2.0)
CPU: Tensor
Battery life (Hrs:Mins): 8:13

Reasons to buy

+
Tensor chip adds smarts to the phone
+
Excellent photo-editing features
+
Android 12 is a welcome update
+
Great price

Reasons to avoid

-
Battery life can be short over 5G

Google went back to the drawing board with the Pixel 6, with the end result being one of the best phones you can buy right now. Not only are the cameras extremely good, but the hardware and software complement each other so well. 

If anything, we’d have to say that the Pixel 6’s battery life isn’t the best. That said, it’s still an excellent phone with a good display. And with IP68 water resistance, you can rest assured that the Pixel 6 can survive if you drop it in some water.

Read our full Google Pixel 6 review.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus in hand

(Image credit: Future)
The best non-Ultra option for Galaxy fans

Specifications

Water resistance: IP68; max 5 feet (1.5 meters) for 30 minutes
Display: 6.6-inch AMOLED (2340 x 1080)
Rear camera: 50MP wide (f/1.8); 12MP ultrawide (f/2.2); 10MP telephoto (f/2.4) with 3x optical zoom
Front camera: 10MP (ƒ/2.2)
CPU: Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
Battery life: 9:46

Reasons to buy

+
IP68 water resistance
+
Excellent dynamic 120Hz display
+
Powerful camera zoom

Reasons to avoid

-
No charger or microSD slot
-
Below average battery life

For many of the top features from the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but for less, turn to the Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus. The phone starts at $999, yet features an adaptive display and Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 system-on-chip, just like other S22 options.

Just as importantly, Samsung doesn’t skip on water resistance here. Like the more expensive S22 Ultra, the S22 Plus can survive a 5-foot plunge into water for up to 30 minutes. 

All around, the Galaxy S22 Plus is a great big-screen device, especially with its 1,750-nit display and 45W fast charging.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus review.

Google Pixel 5a review

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)
The best waterproof budget Android phone

Specifications

Water resistance: IP67; 3.3 feet (1 meter) for 30 minutes
Display: 6.43-inch OLED (2400 x 1080)
Rear cameras: 12.2MP (f/1.7), 16MP (f/2.2) ultrawide
Front camera: 8MP (f/2.0)
CPU: Snapdragon 765G

Reasons to buy

+
Spectacular cameras
+
Big, bright display
+
IP67 water resistance

Reasons to avoid

-
No UK or EU availability
-
Older chipset

Google brought water resistance to the Pixel A-series with the Pixel 5a. This $449 camera champ sports an IP67 rating, meaning it can survive a meter for 30 minutes. Not only that, but it's just a really good phone. Not only is the display good, but it's got decent performance (especially for the price).

The Pixel 5a's claim to fame is the photography experience. Without a doubt, it's the best camera phone under $500, punching well above its weight thanks to Google's computational photography prowess. If you're on a budget and want the best cameras for your money, the Pixel 5a should be at the top of the list.

Read our full Google Pixel 5a review.

How to choose the best waterproof phone for you

If water resistance is a primary concern in your smartphone buying decision, you'll definitely want to pay attention to manufacturers' IP-rating claims.

In the mobile industry, an IP67 certification means your device will be protected against 3.3 feet (1 meter) of submersion for a period of 30 minutes. IP68 usually means you're getting at least 5 feet (1.5 meters), though some companies, like Apple, use IP68 to refer to as much as 13 feet (4 meters) of durability. If a phone boasts no IP rating, or has been treated with a water-repellent coating, you shouldn't trust it to survive if it's ever submerged. Unfortunately, most budget phones tend to make do with this limited form of protection, and even some flagships are among them (including the shady OnePlus 10 Pro situation where only the T-Mobile version has an IP certification).

Also, it's important to point out that an IP rating does not mean water damage within the specified parameters is covered under your device's warranty. Unfortunately, while many phone makers are all too quick to assert water resistance, you won't find a single one that is confident enough in that claim to actually replace or repair one of their products, free of charge, in the event of a spill.

How we test smartphones

In order for a smartphone to make any one of our lists of the best phones, it needs to excel on several tests that we run on every handset. We perform some of these tests in our labs and some in the real world.

When it comes to performance, we rely on such synthetic benchmarks as Geekbench 5 and 3DMark to measure CPU and graphics performance. These tests allow us to compare performance across iPhones and Android devices. We also run a real-world video transcoding test on each phone using the Adobe Premiere Rush app and time the result. (Unfortunately, not all phones are compatible with this test, so we skip it where needed.)

Performance benchmarks
Geekbench 5 (single-core / multicore)3DMark Wild Life Unlimited (FPS)
iPhone 13 Pro Max1720 / 454968
iPhone SE (2022)1718 / 448250
iPhone 131668 / 443656
Galaxy S22 Ultra1240 / 339257
iPhone 121593 / 385951
OnePlus 10 Pro995 / 348261
Pixel 6 Pro1027 / 276040
Pixel 61029 / 269634
Galaxy S22 Plus1214 / 336160
Pixel 5a581 / 134510

To measure the quality of a phone's display, we perform lab tests to determine the brightness of the panel (in nits), as well as how colorful each screen is in the sRGB and DCI-P3 color gamuts. In these cases, higher numbers are better. We also measure color accuracy of each panel with a Delta-E rating, where lower numbers are better and score of 0 is perfect.

Display benchmarks
sRGB (%)DCI-P3 (%)Delta-E
iPhone 13 Pro Max109770.21
iPhone SE (2022)115810.21
iPhone 13110780.26
Galaxy S22 Ultra138970.25
iPhone 12115810.29
OnePlus 10 Pro174 (Vivid) / 119 (Natural)123 (Vivid) / 84 (Natural)0.32 / 0.23
Pixel 6 Pro104740.3
Pixel 6101720.28
Galaxy S22 Plus212 (Vivid) / 128 (Natural)150 (Vivid) / 91 (Natural)0.35 (Vivid) / 0.23 (Natural)
Pixel 5a119850.32

One of the most important tests we run is the Tom's Guide battery test. We run a web surfing test over 5G (or 4G if the phone doesn't have 5G support) at 150 nits of screen brightness until the battery gives out. In general, a phone that lasts 10 hours or more is good, and anything above 11 hours makes our list of the best phone battery life.

Battery life benchmark
Battery life (Hrs:Mins)
iPhone 13 Pro Max12:16
iPhone SE (2022)7:39
iPhone 1310:33
Galaxy S22 Ultra8:50 (Adaptive) / 8:56 (60Hz)
iPhone 128:25
OnePlus 10 Pro11:52 (High) / 12:40 (60Hz)
Pixel 6 Pro7:43 (Adaptive) / 7:55 (60Hz)
Pixel 68:13 (Adaptive) / 7:56 (60Hz)
Galaxy S22 Plus9:27 (Adaptive) / 10:27 (60Hz)
Pixel 5a9:45

Last but not least, we take the best phones out in the field to take photos outdoors, indoors and at night in low light to see how they perform versus their closest competitors. We take shots of landscapes, food, portraits and more, and also allow you to be the judge with side-by-side comparisons in our reviews. 

Jordan Palmer
Jordan Palmer

Jordan is the Phones Editor for Tom's Guide, covering all things phone-related. He's written about phones for over five years and plans to continue for a long while to come. He loves nothing more than relaxing in his home with a book, game, or his latest personal writing project. Jordan likes finding new things to dive into, from books and games to new mechanical keyboard switches and fun keycap sets. Outside of work, you can find him poring over open-source software and his studies.

  • TwoWheelsGood
    Is there any evaluation of how well the phones perform in the rain ? With wet fingers, can I unlock the phone, navigate to an app, a page, a tab, a screen, then zoom and pan, and type some keyboard text , and send/submit ?

    Are raindrops when they impact the screen or run off the screen occasionally misinterpreted as finger gestures ? If smartphone works in the rain, does it work both in tropical monsoon 90 F and in temperate 30 F conditions ?

    If this appears a strange question, imaging you are riding your bike around town in the rain trying to follow web based cycling navigation instructions and you keep tabbing between a saved map route (like map quest in Chrome, or RideWithGPS) and a live map app like Googlemaps or Apple Maps, and you will photograph or video discrepancies while riding between these online tools and the real world as maintained by the Dept. Of Transportation.
    Reply