Almost all smartphones and tablets work perfectly well in ideal conditions, but the real world rarely complies in that regard. Phone horror stories abound about devices breaking after suffering just a little wear and tear, but rest assured that smartphone manufacturers have heard your concerns. A new video released by Samsung shows just what the company’s devices have to go through to get approved for release.

Drops, Dunks, and Shocks

The Galaxy S4 and other popular Samsung smartphones may have a more plastic feel to them than some phone aficionados are used to, but don’t let that fool you. These devices are built to withstand a mountain of abuse, as a new video released by Samsung proves.

The video, which you can watch on YouTube or read about in this CNET article, is in Korean, but it has English subtitles scattered throughout, and you really don’t need a translator to understand what they are doing to these devices.

The tests range from acrobatics, when the device is dropped from high enough to shatter a ceramic mug and put through a rotating tumbler mechanism, to intense conditions, when they are put through a heat and humidity test, to the downright absurd, when the powered-on device is plunged into water and given a visible shock of electricity.

Through it all, it becomes obvious that this high-end smartphone was built with the real world in mind and tested to ensure that while not every incident will have a happy ending, the phone should make it through most of what users can throw at it.

Of course, we shouldn’t forget that this video was released by a company trying to sell its products, so any footage showing device failures would most likely have been cut. Still, it’s a powerful record of just how well-tested the Galaxy S4 is for real-world use, and a testament to the fact that small drops or dings shouldn’t affect the device’s performance at all.

Using This Knowledge

The video is peppered with reminders to refrain from trying these tests at home, and that’s sage advice. Dunking your S4 into a sink full of water or applying a large charge of static electricity to it may sound like fun, but it’s also a good way to turn your device into an expensive paperweight.

At best, the video shows that while the S4 and its companion devices may have a plastic feel, they’ll probably hold up just as well as devices encased in metal. Regardless, after enough abuse all devices will eventually start to show signs of wear or lose some functionality. It’s best to see the video as an interesting aside and a testament to how hard Samsung works to put out a quality smartphone, rather than a list of things you can do to a device without breaking it. After all, while some devices can still be turned in for cash, like some models of the iPhone, with most smartphones, once you break it, there’s nothing you can do but fork over the cash for a new one.



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