We were hoping that Apple might take a little inspiration from Sony and make the new iPhone 6 and the 6 Plus waterproof, or at least water resistant. One of the most common culprits for smartphone damage is liquids. Phones get dunked in the toilet, dropped in puddles, and have drinks spilled all over them. You can take your chances, or you can shop for water resistant or waterproof iPhone 6 cases.
Updated on 1-02-2015 by Joe Donovan: added new cases by Lunatik and New Trent and up-to-date information for Incipio, Catalyst, and Lifeproof.
One of the best waterproof iPhone 6 case manufacturers is Lifeproof (now owned by Otterbox), which has a reputation for delivering consistently dependable iPhone cases. The Fre has a scratch resistant touchscreen cover and can also be submerged in up to 2 meters of water for up to an hour. For waterproof cases, Lifeproof is tough to beat on usability and style.
This water-resistant case comes from a big name manufacturer you can trust. These cases meet military standard 810G, so drop damage up to 2 meters is not a problem. They also keep the rain out, as every angle of the phone is covered, but there’s no guarantee it will cope with submersion. The iPhone 6 Plus version costs $10 more.
This water resistant case is best for anyone who wants to mix things up. Maybe you don’t need a completely waterproof case, but you’d like something that’ll shed water and not look like a brick. This is your best bet–rubber bumper seals the ports and keeps debris and moisture out. The case includes replaceable rear panels in silver, gold, and “gun metal.”
This case can be submerged in 3 meters of water for up to 30 minutes. It will also keep dust, dirt, snow, or ice away from your iPhone 6. There is one major catch though; it won’t allow you to use your phone when it’s inside. The Touch ID, the touchscreen, and even the buttons are not accessible. It’s really a waterproof storage case.
If you already have a case for everyday wear and you just want a waterproof solution for days at the beach or out on a lake, then you could just opt for a bag like this and avoid spending a lot. It will fit a wide variety of devices including the iPhone 6. You can see the phone and even use it through the clear windowed sides. The snap lock at the top keeps it completely safe from the elements, and there’s a strap to make it easy to carry or hang round your neck.
There’s a version of this for the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus, but it is suspiciously cheap for a rugged case. It claims to be waterproof up to 6 meters depth for up to 12 hours. It also claims to be dust, snow, and shockproof, but we’re a little skeptical about the quality you’ll be getting here. Reviews are mixed and we’re not sure the Touch ID will work with the case on. Could be worth a gamble, but we haven’t had a chance to test it so proceed with caution.
This one definitely isn’t waterproof, but it is a rugged case that should safeguard the iPhone 6 against light rain and the odd splash. It offers all around protection and that includes a built-in screen protector and port covers. Cut-outs for the camera and speaker mean that any submersion is still going to be disastrous, but this is one of the cheapest rugged cases around that is still decent quality.
Catalyst expects to start shipping waterproof cases for the iPhone 6 in mid-January, delayed from the case’s initially slated December release date. The manufacturer made a solid line of cases for the iPhone 5S that were IP68 rated, waterproof up to 5 meters, and also tested to military standards 810G, which means drops and bumps are not a problem. You’ll also be able to use your iPhone 6 while it’s in the case and that includes the touchscreen, Touch ID, and the physical buttons. You can preorder now.
The waterproof case Incipio made for the iPhone 5S could handle depths of 2 meters for up to 30 minutes. It also allowed you to use the Touch ID, though some reviews complained about it making the touchscreen hard to use and muffling audio. We’d expect Incipio to improve the line with the iPhone 6 version, so it could be worth waiting for.
As one of the biggest brands in rugged cases, OtterBox has already released a line for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, but it hasn’t yet updated the waterproof Preserver series that was released for the iPhone 5S. It could handle submersion up to 2 meters for up to 30 minutes and provided sturdy drop protection too, all without preventing you from actually using the touchscreen, Touch ID, or buttons.
Available early spring. This one of the few fully waterproof cases with a slim and colorful design, though Lifeproof has a line of colorful cases debuting in the spring too. TouchID compatabile and rated to IP68, which means the case will, at least, protect your phone when submerged for 30 minutes in 3 feet of water. Lunatik has another, beefier case that’ll withstand higher impact falls.
Alternative water resistance solutions
If you don’t want to stick your iPhone 6 in a chunky waterproof or water resistant case or bag then you might consider another approach. You could get your iPhone treated with a liquid repellant coating that could save it in the event of a splash, spill, or even a dunk.
You could also try Liquipel. For $60 they’ll coat an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, but you do have to send your phone to them and it will take a couple of days to get it back.
There’s also a service called Impervious that sells kits. The full waterproofing kit ($40 for iPhone 6, $50 for iPhone 6 Plus) requires some tinkering and you’ll have to take your iPhone apart to properly apply it. They also offer an exterior spray kit ($30 for iPhone 6 or 6 Plus), but it won’t safeguard your phone from submersion.