One smartphone specification that is often overlooked by consumers is the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR).
This feature refers to the amount of radio frequency (RF) energy that your body is exposed to when you are using a cell phone.
I have put together a guide of the highest and lowest radiation emitting smartphones available on the market in 2019 so that you can get a better view of which models are safe for you.
What is the SAR Rating for Mobile Phones?
They created SAR as a mean of measuring how much RF your body can take when making a call. The outcome of these proceedings was that a person cannot absorb more than 1.6 watts of energy per kilogram of body weight.
This upper limit of specific absorption rate is set well below the level of radiation that would endanger a user’s health. It is the result of intense laboratory testing and it has become a standard for all smartphone manufacturers.
The highest SAR was also set relative to the heat produced by RF radiation, and it has nothing to do with its possible side effects for your health, such as cancer or brain damage.
In other words, the SAR specification on a phone can only tell you the highest measurement taken for each frequency reached by the device, and not how much radiation you absorb.
What is a Safe SAR?
Undoubtedly, the safest cell phone that you can use is the one with the lowest SAR. All manufacturers of mobile devices are required by the FCC to meet RF standards and mention the specific absorption rate to consumers.
Most experts consider a safe SAR to be anywhere between 0.10 and 0.50.
In fact, several manufacturers like Samsung and LG try to stay within these limits for every model they release.
At the other end, companies like Huawei, Nokia, and Xiaomi consider the maximum SAR limit of 1.6 as a starting benchmark for their standards, and one from which they rarely stray away.
If you are in the market for a new smartphone from one of the top leading brands like Apple or Samsung, you might want to check the SAR ratings before you purchase one.
Which Smartphones of 2019 have the Lowest SAR?
UPDATE: A company called Mudita is developing a cell phone of very low SAR value. The estimated value is 0.08 w/kg. You can pre-order here. Just back the campaign and the phone will be available for pre-orders.
Keep in mind that when buying a new smartphone, the SAR level is just one of the many features that you need to check, but not one that should be a deal breaker.
However, if you are looking for the lowest possible specific absorption rate, you have plenty to choose from and many reputable brands as well.
Here is a list of smartphones with the lowest levels of emitted radiation:
|Manufacturer||Model name||SAR Value|
|Motorola||Moto g6 plus||0.44|
Hats off to LG and Samsung for making smartphones so powerful and yet with such low SAR values. As seen from the list above, the three smartphones of 2019 with the lowest SAR values are:
- LG Electronics G7 ThinQ (Check prices on Amazon)
- Samsung Galaxy S9 (Check prices on Amazon)
- LG Electronics LG V40 (Check prices on Amazon)
However, the lowest SAR value comes from Verykool Vortex RS90, which is only 0.18. However, I’ve not listed it because it is not at all a popular phone.
There you have it! The lowest radiation emitting smartphones available on the market in 2019 offers a large selection of brands and technological possibilities with relatively reduced SAR levels.
If you don’t own any of the phones mentioned in the list above, get an FCC certified cell phone radiation shield.
These figures refer to the number of watts absorbed per kilogram of body weight when you make a call with the phone placed on the ear.
Which Smartphones of 2019 Emit the Most Radiation?
If you don’t consider SAR levels as a crucial criterion when buying a new smartphone, you probably won’t mind choosing a model with a high level of emitted radiation.
In this regard, the cell phone market will not disappoint you and present you with an appetizing offer that includes major, expensive brands as well as low-cost, competitive labels.
Here are the smartphones with the highest specific absorption rate levels available in 2019:
|Redmi||Note 7 Pro||0.964|
As you might have noticed, these phones emitting the most radiation have SAR values over the 0.5 which are above the levels recommended by experts. A lot of these models are dual SIM devices which are mostly manufactured for the Asian market.
How to Absorb Less Radiation from Your Phone
The FCC is working closely with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to create better guidelines for smartphone use and radiation effects.
The FCC considers that you lower the risk of absorbing a high level of radiation when you:
- Keep a phone conversation under 30 minutes
- Keep the phone farther away from your head
- Use a hands-free device
- Opt for video communication instead of audio conversations
- Choose text messaging over direct talking or audio messages
If you follow these simple guidelines and you use a low SAR smartphone, you expose your body to a significantly reduced level of radiation.
Additionally, opting for a single SIM device instead of a dual SIM cellphone may decrease the level of FR absorbed by your body.
How to Find Out the SAR Level of Your Phone
UPDATE: I have a dedicated article for finding SAR values of a cell phone. Go check it out.
If you want to know how much radiation is emitted by your phone, but you cannot find your model in the statistics that we have presented so far, you can check the FCC SAR Database for better results.
Here are a few simple instructions on how to do that:
- Locate the FCC ID number on your phone (check the case or behind the battery)
- Go to https://www.fcc.gov/oet/ea/fccid
- Insert the ID number in the required forms
- Click “Search” and find your smartphone
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you read my other articles (listed below) which will help you in reducing exposure from EMFs emitted from cell phones.
- 10 Ways to Protect Yourself from Cell Phone Radiation
- Do Cell Phones Emit Radiation When Turned Off or Not in Use?
- Do Smartphones On Airplane Mode Emit Radiation?
I also recommend you get yourself a good EMF meter to measure the EMF levels of your cell phone.The Trifield TF2 is one of the most versatile EMF meters available. And for the capability it offers, when I checked the listing of this EMF meter on Amazon, I was really surprised to see how well it is priced.
I have also created a hands on review and guide of the Trifield TF2 in which I have explained in detail how it can be used effectively to detect EMFs.
Keep in mind that the SAR level of your cell phone is the result of laboratory tests done performed at the smallest performance settings.
These figures might oscillate slightly during normal use or when maximum power occurs. Therefore, you should consider them as marks of orientation and not definitive standards.
The SAR ratings show the level of radiation that your body may absorb during regular use of your smartphone.
The FCC does not consider them as potentially dangerous risks for your well-being, regardless of how much you use your cell phone.
The past few years have seen the manufacturers release cell phones with relatively low specific absorption rates.
As a result, the mobile phone market of 2019 offers a wide variety of devices that have a low SAR level and feature well below FCC benchmarks.
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