Smartwatches are 30 times dirtier than toilet seats, study finds

Your smartwatch is probably dirtier than your toilet seat (Picture:

Germs are on our minds at the moment, but while we are focusing a lot on our hands, a recent study has found there’s another area we should be turning our attention to.

It makes sense that our mobile phones harbour bacteria, considering the amount we touch and place them on different surfaces (and rarely clean them thoroughly).

But a new study has found that there’s another device that actually holds more bacteria than our phones – a smartwatch.

The study, carried out by CompareMyMobile, swabbed a range of household tech and then cultivated the bacteria on those surfaces, to see which was the dirtiest.

It focussed on smartphones, keyboards, smartwatches and video game controllers, testing for three types of bacteria: coliforms (which are found in human waste), staphylococci (which can cause infections) and Enterobacteriaceae (a bacteria family that includes E.Coli and Salmonella).

Pretty grim stuff.

Results found that smartwatches were the worst culprits, housing more than 250 bacteria colonies per cm2 – which is 3,746% more bacteria than a toilet seat.

Smartphones were the second worst offenders, with 100 colonies per cm2, followed by keyboards then game controllers. But keyboards were the only ones to show a ‘clear presence of all bacteria types’. Yuck.

Worryingly, the types of bacteria commonly found on these devices are known to cause illnesses such as food poisoning, skin infections and – in extreme cases – pneumonia and toxic shock syndrome.

So we really should be cleaning them as much as possible.

Daniel Clifford from CompareMyMobile said: ‘Our tests found that smartwatch owners should regularly be cleaning their tech, making sure to clean both the watch face and strap.

‘This is especially true if you use your wearable to track your fitness at the gym or when you run as this can cause them to get particularly dirty.’

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