When renewing my mobile phone contract, and being offered a new phone, the guy at Virgin Media asked me what I do for a living. “I’m an outdoor instructor,” I told him, “and a volunteer Mountain Rescue Team member”. “Ah! In that case you want the Sony Xperia Z3.” Said he. He went on to explain that the Z3 is ‘dust-proof’ and ‘waterproof’. He told me that he went to a demonstration by Sony during which the guy took out his Sony Xperia Z3 and dropped it into a bucket of water. He then gave a Powerpoint presentation on the phone, and at the end, rolled up his sleeve, plunged his arm into the bucket to retrieve his phone, wiped it down, then phoned his office to tell them he’d finished his presentation.

Now, being an outdoor instructor I thought, “I get wet quite a lot in my job, and also in the voluntary work I do as a member of my local Mountain Rescue Team. That sounds like the perfect phone for me!”. “I’ll have one” said I.

At about the same time I was asked to review a phone case from Aquapac. I told them the size of my new phone, and very soon their iphone 6 Plus Case arrived. It was a simple design, and looked robust. I popped my new phone in it and carried it around in the mountains quite a bit. No problems at all.

However, within a couple of weeks I grew a bit weary of having to constantly take the phone out of its case to take photos, for one of the great things about the Xperia Z3 is its superb camera functions. Yes, I know you can shoot through the plastic of the Aquapac case, but you do lose a lot of image quality, so I took the phone out every time, then replaced it back in the case after the picture had been taken.

Eventually I started to wonder what the point of the case was. For most phones I could see that it would work very, very well indeed, and could even be considered essential, but for my super Xperia z3 with its waterproof capabilities, did I really need it? So, I stopped using the phone case.

One dark night – in fact the very night that Storm Desmond swept the country – I was out on the fells with the Mountain Rescue Team. It was a vile night, with lashing rain and howling winds. We were out on a training exercise, and my Xperia Z3 was out there with me, tucked safely out the way in a pocket of my jacket.

The following day I awoke to find my Sony Xperia Z3 dead. It had leaked quite badly, whilst in my pocket. The phone that can be dropped into a bucket of water couldn’t stand up to a bit of wetness in the bottom of a jacket pocket.

I phoned Virgin and they arranged for it to be collected. A couple of weeks later I had to phone them to find out what was going on. The guy in their repair centre said, “Sorry, but we can’t fix this under warranty as the phone has been subjected to some sort of liquid.” “Yes, it’s rainwater.” I told him, and explained all that had happened. He then went on to tell me that because I had let the phone come into contact with water it was no longer covered by the warranty. I had a little word with this chap about my conversation with the Virgin salesman who told me you could throw this phone in a bucket of water and still use it, but he, and ultimately Virgin refused to budge.

So, I phoned Sony. Their response was that if I had allowed water to enter the phone’s innards then they could not repair it. “BUT THE XPERIA Z3 IS SUPPOSED TO BE WATERPROOF!” I explained quietly. To no avail.

I’m now the not so proud owner of a cheap and cheerful Samsung phone, and s lightly too large Aquapac waterproof case. If only I’d carried on using the case right from the start, I’d not be telling you this little episode from my recent life.

The Aquapac phone cases come in all sizes, are solid pieces of kit, are easy to close up, and have non-slip surfaces so they are easy to hold. And yes, you can make a call, email, text, tweet, or whatever you want to do while the phone is still in the case. You can even take photos, as long as you ensure the lens is in the right place as some parts of the case are clear plastic and others aren’t. If only I’d learned to be content with that my Xperia would still be alive today!

To find out more about the Aquapac phone cases, go to Aquapac here!

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