Apple changes official stance, now says it's fine to disinfect your iPhone

iPhone 11 Pro Max
(Image credit: Future)

Although the tech giant previously advised against the idea of using disinfectants on its devices, Apple has updated its website with instructions on how to clean its products in light of coronavirus

Before this update, the Cupertino company had been firmly against the use of any chemical whatsoever to clean its products due to the potential degradation of the oleophobic coating – a protective layer used on touchscreen devices like the iPhone and iPad to avoid fingerprints and smudges.

“Using a 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, you may gently wipe the exterior surfaces of your iPhone,” the site reads. “Don't use bleach. Avoid getting moisture in any openings, and don't submerge your iPhone in any cleaning agents.”

It’s obvious that nothing about the devices themselves has changed to warrant this new information, so it’s a sign that Apple is taking the need for disinfection seriously enough to alter its advice.

The instructions are rather specific on what to use and what to avoid and vary depending on which model iPhone, iPad, display, or Mac you have.

For most cases, however, you must first unplug any cables from your device, switch it off and use a “soft, slightly damp, lint-free cloth – for example, a lens cloth” to wipe it down. This refers to a microfibre cloth as they aren’t likely to scratch your screen.

For the latest range of iPhone 11 handsets, due to their superior waterproofing, you can also use the same type of cloth dipped in warm, soapy water for more stubborn grime.

If you’re unsure about your specific Apple product, visit the website and choose your device from the menu to see the relevant instructions.

Harry Domanski
Harry is an Australian Journalist for TechRadar with an ear to the ground for future tech, and the other in front of a vintage amplifier. He likes stories told in charming ways, and content consumed through massive screens. He also likes to get his hands dirty with the ethics of the tech.