Concerned about keeping your phone free of coronavirus germs without destroying it? Apple wants you to know that it's fine to use disinfectant wipes on your iPhone. In fact, per Engadget, the tech giant actually changed the cleaning section of its website to reflect that. "Using a 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, you may gently wipe the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple product, such as the display, keyboard, or other exterior surfaces," the new information reads. "Don't use bleach. Avoid getting moisture in any opening, and don't submerge your Apple product in any cleaning agents. Don't use on fabric or leather surfaces." The company previously said only water should be used for cleaning, since some substances can damage the coating applied to keep the touchscreens fingerprint-free, CNBC explains.
Keeping that in mind, Engadget suggests applying isopropyl alcohol to a soft microfiber cloth (or an old, clean T-shirt) and using that to clean your phone. It also advises not spraying anything directly on the display, not using paper towels, and (perhaps most importantly) to remember to wash your hands after cleaning your phone. CNBC adds the suggestion that you turn your phone off before cleaning it, and remember to be careful not to get the charging port or any other opening wet. The Wall Street Journal—which was already in the process of testing this new advice before it was issued, and says that after 1,095 wipes the screen's coating was still A-OK—notes that Google has issued its own set of advice and says you can use "ordinary household soap or cleaning wipes" on its Pixel phones. The virus can survive on metal, glass, or plastic for up to nine days. (Read more coronavirus stories.)