Sci-Tech
Wednesday Dec 14 2022
By
Web Desk

WATCH: 'Smart sink' allows people to wash cellphones

By
Web Desk
The WOSH hand-washing station uses a hydrological cycle system, deep ultraviolet LEDs, and a reusable water-based sink to disinfect your smartphone. Screengrab via Twitter/@shao1555
The WOSH hand-washing station uses a hydrological cycle system, deep ultraviolet LEDs, and a reusable water-based sink to disinfect your smartphone. Screengrab via Twitter/@shao1555

This time, a bathroom is the topic of conversation on the Japanese side of Twitter, as opposed to the usual thrilling seasonal offerings like savoury rice or Mobile Suit Gundam burgers.

Because they were so surprised by a system set up at the sink, Sho Sawada recently posted a video that was recorded in the restroom of a McDonald's they visited. 

When Sawada went to wash their hands, they saw a strange object sitting right next to the sink. After reading the directions, they were startled to learn that it was there to wash phones!

"At McDonald's nowadays, not only do they have a place to wash your hands but one to wash your smartphone as well..."

Some McDonald's in Japan have put in sink systems with a slot that "washes" your smartphone, just like Sawada's video shows. The system was created by the Japanese business WOTA and is known as WOSH.

The WOSH hand-washing station uses a hydrological cycle system, deep ultraviolet LEDs, and a reusable water-based sink to disinfect your smartphone. According to WOTA, your phone will be 99.9% sterilised in just 30 seconds, allowing you to wash it along with your hands.

Given how frequently we touch our smartphones, how many tables we place them on (including those at McDonald's, where many people eat every day), and how often we hold them up to our faces, it's undoubtedly a setting that is appreciated and can improve hygiene. Even though WOSH can be set up anywhere, many people were taken aback to see something so "futuristic" in a McDonald's restroom, leaving them with positive comments about the new technology:

"It is better not to expose the terminal of the organic EL display to UV," a user critiqued.

"What the heck, I've never seen this before! Just looking at it makes me want to put my phone in it," another said.

"Sterilizing smartphones...wow, it's not like I actually clean mine at home so this is a good idea," appreciated another.

Recently, researchers at the University of Arizona have found that cell phone screens are 10 times dirtier than a toilet seat.

Cell phones are with us everywhere we go from public commutes to the dinner table. Therefore, they are grosser than we would like to imagine.

Since our hands are in touch with a lot of dirty things in the environment, our phones get dirty as well. Even if we wash our hands, the bacteria transferred to the small device in our pockets stay there.

A survey by Deloitte revealed that Americans check their phones approximately 47 times a day. This means a plethora of germs moves from our fingertips to the screens.

"Am I the only one who gets excited watching the smartphone going in and coming out?" wondered a user.

"This makes me realise just how much I touch my phone," chimed him another.