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on August 1, 2013
I work in the mobile industrty as a third party authorized seller for mulitple carriers, and I have to say this phone has impressed me greatly. One of our employees purchased the phone and put it through its paces. Performs extremely well and is completely water tight. The thing people do need to realize though is this. This phone is rated for up to 6ft of submerssion for up to 30 minutes. Any longer than this, and you risk water damage.

To make the phone water tight, after the back is snapped into place on the phone, you have to press firmly right under where the camera openings are. You'll hear a pop in the middle. When you hear that, and only after you hear that, is the phone water tight. 90% of the water issues people are having most likely could be avoided by either the carrier remembering to press there firmly or the associate informint the customer. Make sure you're pressing there if you plan on exposing this phone to water, and please do NOT go scuba diving with it. Not desiged for that length of submerssion.

Hope this helps when making a decision on whether or not to purchase the phone!
22 comments98 of 98 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 31, 2013
I have both the S4 and S4 active, The Active is only a tiny bit larger, but doesn't support the flip shield on the front. They are both very nice phones.

If you are interested in Warranty experience, see note on painful service at end.

AT&T offers a one-time-replacement for water damage, as of Aug 7 2013.

There are a few things to do, to help your phone not be damaged by water, (based on instructions for my Panasonic underwater camera).

1) The seals on the back must be perfectly clean before closing it up. My underwater camera comes with a brush to ensure no hair, sand, lint, dust... is on the seal before closing. A dirty seal can allow water to enter at that spot.

2) Don't jump in water or swim with phone in hand (better to slowly wade in, with phone in pocket). The water pressure is Much greater than 1 meter submersion, when you have a sudden gush of water during a dive or jump, (same goes for being hit by a wave, or under a hose/faucet).

3) Don't open the back up, till the unit has been rinsed in clean fresh water (so hard salt crystals or mud don't form near seal), wiped off dry on the outside, and air dried for an about an hour. (You will notice that the seal only covers half of the back of the phone, the other half can hold drops of water, that once opened, can drip and turn the white H2O indicator red, and void the warranty).

4) Don't depend on the phone actually lasting 30 minutes 1 meter under water in the future, Seals wear, and degrade with age. (In a few years you may only have 10 minutes at foot under water, depending on wear).

5) Don't show off the phone's water resistance more than necessary, There are occasional manufacturing defects, that are hard to test for submersion. Use the phone for the minimum time and depth needed for a picture. I plan to use mine mostly in the rain, (and my underwater Panasonic camera, rated at 12 meters for 2 hours for most underwater pictures); Or maybe a few drops of sweat when exercising with music.

6) Don't forget to seal the USB port very well. It doesn't snap closed easily, needs to be slid to the side while pressing in for complete closure. The USB seal will wear quickly since it is opened daily, and easily pops open.

I'm also content with the phone cases I bought: The belt clip case (Black Horizontal Leather Pouch Carrying Case Holster with Belt Clip and Loops for Samsung Galaxy Note S4 Cell Phone) is large enough to fit the both the S4 Active with the thin TPU protective case (TUDIA Ultra Slim Melody Series TPU Protective Case for Samsung Galaxy S4 Active I9295 (Blue)) for extra drop protection.

Edit after owning phone 10 months, reduce from 5 stars to 3 stars:
POOR WARRANTY SERVICE: The USB Cover tether became disconnected. I called Samsung, they said it would be a warranty repair, Neither AT&T nor Samsung would provide a loaner during the repair. After a week, The repair was put on hold, waiting for payment of $160 for LCD screen & Touch pad (even though both are in perfect condition). Samsung said the warranty does not cover a replacement LCD, and they would have to replace it as part of their repair to get to the USB port underneath the LCD. This stinks, Customer should not be charged for warranty repair, for parts the repairman needs to break in order to save time on the repair. Calls to Samsung repair center lead nowhere. Email to the "office of the president" [] resulted in a free repair, but took several hours of my time.

Russ G.
33 comments32 of 35 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 10, 2013
The phone is great, but there was an issue with the listing. The vendor mistakenly listed it as an I9295 - the international version of the Galaxy S4 Active. It was in fact an I537 - the ATT model. It was, as listed, not locked to the ATT network, which is what I wanted, so I was not impacted as much as I might have been by the mistake. The vendor did send a couple of nice accessories to apologize for the mistake. They were quite responsive, and I will use them again.
33 comments16 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 19, 2014
I'm deployed to Afghanistan, and was worried about the dust. I knew I wanted an Android phone, so I did my research. After learning that Samsung made a water/dust proof Galaxy phone, I figured I had to give it a try (as I wanted an S4, and thought this was the best of both worlds). I was a little nervous about the screen, as this phone has a TFT LCD (where as the Flagship S4 has an OLED screen), but so far I haven't had any issues. In fact, as I was researching this phone to make sure it was the best choice for my needs, I read that the TFT LCDs are actually better for outside use (as they don't get as washed out by the sun - something I was concerned about), and so far I haven't had any issues viewing the screen outdoors (even in direct sunlight).

I would absolutely recommend this phone for anyone who spends a lot of time outdoors, but still want's a smartphone. My only complaint about this phone is that I can't use a lot of the really cool add-on's/accessories that are available for the S4 (such as Qi wireless charging, or the flip cover that shows the time through a window on the front, etc...) Other than that minor qualm, I've been extremely satisfied with this phone.

P.S. - Yes, I've tested the "waterproof-ness" of this phone, and it works like a champion - just make sure you do what the directions say and verify that the back is completely on (being mindful of the clip/latch under the camera on the back).
0Comment17 of 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on November 17, 2013
This Phone is great, works as advertised except that when i received it I expected it to be factory unlocked from SAMUNG and it turned out to be factory unlocked from VODACOM with many useless pre installed apps. However, I guess once you are willing to work around that, the phone is a grt buy.
11 comment11 of 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 19, 2013
I love this phone! It is even better than I expected. I love how fast it is. I am using it through Straighttalk.
0Comment15 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 31, 2013
I love the iphone's reliability after years but hate their proprietary restrictiveness, and of course that stupid iTunes. I love the Android's versatility but they all go buggy and unreliable after 6 months or so. I almost bought the iPhone 5 over the Galaxy S4, just tired of my old unreliable android that kept freezing at the worst times. Then I saw this "Active" version that is waterproof and Dust proof. I was sold.

Could not have made a better choice! It's also slick and better looking than the regular Galaxy S4.

The keyboard is actually great, I thought I would have issues typing, but it works perfectly, and I like how aggressive it is at correcting--Only problem is, you can't edit the dictionary to add words...which makes it useless. I can't write s*** or a*s and not even OMG or IDK. So I downloaded the Google Keyboard for it, and it's perfect.

It didn't seem to come with much bloatware, and it's the smoothest running phone I've ever had (I've had plenty).

I am infatuated with it.
0Comment12 of 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on February 10, 2014
It is very disappointing that the phone was offered as NEW, but it is very clear that the phone is a REFURBISHED(used) one. It even came with the screen protector(not the sticker of samsung) and clear marks that somebody had used it before. I am traveling this week, so I won't have time to wait for another phone. I really don't recommend this seller: "mercate group".
0Comment14 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 20, 2014
This phone is a really good idea. I don't use it for underwater or anything, but have sweated through a number of phones, so wanted something for running. It works great, until it doesn't... The rear cover on my phone would ever so slightly open on occasion. If you every single time you pick up the phone remember to push this down (in addition to sealing the charging plug), then you're golden, but the problem is, as the cover randomly opens, impossible to be checking it all the time.

Although the samsung water damage warranty on this is pretty bad anyway, you should really buy a version that has the warranty in case you run into trouble.

Also vendor is useless in helping here.
0Comment3 of 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on February 13, 2014
It is not listed as an international version phone, but the one I received was. It is apparent from the other reviews that they have collected these phones from multiple sources. I had to send my phone back.
0Comment6 of 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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