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How gross is your smartphone?

The smartphone “is always warm, stored in dark places, so bacterias are growing on your phone”, while another study claims mobiles are 18 times dirtier than public bathrooms.

Image: Nam Y. Huh/AP/Press Association Images

WHEN WAS THE last time you cleaned your phone?

You feel a bit ick now, don’t you.

The idea of germs being spread on one of the devices we touch most throughout the day was brought up at the Consumer Electronics Show today where companies offering better sanitising were also promoting the cause of cleanliness.

The technology show has long had a focus on health, but makers of sanitising devices said people need to look in their pockets and purses to the microbes on their personal gadgets.

The smartphone “is always warm, stored in dark places, so bacterias are growing on your phone,” said Dan Barnes, co-founder of Phonesoap, which was displaying its device which cleans and recharges a phone.

Barnes said he got the idea after reading a study indicating “that mobile phones are 18 times dirtier than public bathrooms”.

Barnes said his $50 device uses ultraviolet radiation which “kills the bacteria’s DNA, so that they can’t live on your phone anymore”.

Similar devices were also seen at the huge electronics fair, including one called CleanBeats, which sanitises, plays music and recharges two phones through a USB connection.

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The CleanBeats device is based on NASA technology, and will soon hit the market with a $499 price tag, said spokesman Dennis Rocha for the California-based startup.

The company website says its device produces “hydroperoxide catalytic molecules” to clean the surfaces of touchscreens.

© – AFP 2014 with additional reporting by Sinéad O’Carroll

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More: The best 3D printers that appeared at CES 2014

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