These popular smartphones emit the most radiation

Which smartphones radiate the most? The Federal Office for Radiation Protection has published a list that shows: Many popular smartphone models from OnePlus, Xiaomi, Apple, Huawei and Sony have a relatively high SAR value.

Technical devices emit electromagnetic radiation. While you are not permanently exposed to most radiation sources in everyday life, smartphones are a constant companion for many. Precisely because a large part of the population is in such close contact with smartphones and the associated radiation, it is worth taking a closer look at the radiation values of current devices, which are now even a decision criterion for many users when making a purchase.

SAR value indicates radiation from smartphones

In our “atechbook Basics” format, editorial director Andreas Filbig explains briefly and clearly what the SAR value is:

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The radiation of smartphones is indicated with the so-called SAR value (Specific Absorption Rate). It shows how strong the energy is that the body absorbs from electromagnetic radiation – because it penetrates a few millimeters into the human body. It is given in watts per kilogram and differs from smartphone to smartphone. You can find the value for your device either on the manufacturer’s data sheet or on the homepage of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS).

The World Health Organization (WHO) provides a guideline value for cell phone radiation. According to this, the permissible upper limit is a value of 2.00 watts/kg, i.e. a SAR value of 2.

Which smartphones emit the most radiation? – Updated list

The German Federal Office for Radiation Protection keeps records of the radiation levels of new smartphones. It measures the radiation emitted when using a cell phone on the ear and on the body. The value at the ear is decisive for the ranking in the following list, since the radiation value is particularly high during phone calls and the cell phone is usually held to the ear. The list includes the 15 smartphones that currently have the highest SAR values at the ear according to the BfS. In addition to the Chinese manufacturers Xiaomi, Huawei and OnePlus, the Romanian manufacturer Allview now also has smartphones in the list.

Manufacturer/type SAR value (at the ear) SAR value (on the body)
Allview – P7 Pro 1,82 n.a.
Motorola – motorola edge 1,79 1,68
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Xiaomi – Mi A1 1,75 0,76
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Xiaomi – Mi A1 LTE Dual SIM (Model MDG2) 1,75 0,76
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Wiko – JERRY3 1,61 1,15
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Alcatel – Alcatel 1SE (5030F) 1,59 1,62
(measuring distance: 3.44 cm)
Alcatel – Alcatel IDOL 5 (6058X) 1,59 1,59
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Allview – X4 Soul Lite 1,59 n/a
ZTE – Axon 11 5G 1,59 n/a
Xiaomi – Mi Max 3 (Model M1804E4A) 1,58 1,42
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Alcatel – Alcatel A7 (5050Y) 1,57 1,45
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Asus – ZenFone 6 (ZS630KL) 1,57 0,98
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Xiaomi – Mi Mix 3 5G (Model M1810E5GG) 1,56 1,56
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
OnePlus – OnePlus 6T 1,55 1,27
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Alcatel – Alcatel 3L (2020) (5029D) 1,53 1,46
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)

Which smartphones have low radiation?

Parallel to the list of smartphones with the highest radiation, there is of course the other side of the scale: The smartphones that are particularly low in radiation. Here, among others, manufacturer Samsung stands out positively, which is the only one of the really big manufacturers represented on the list and that even several times.

Manufacturer/type SAR value at the ear SAR value on the body
ZTE Blade V10 0,13 0,85
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Wiko LENNY4 0,15 0,85
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Samsung – Galaxy Note 8 0,17 1,29
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
TP-LINK – Neffos C9 0,17 0,86
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
ZTE – AXON ELITE 0,17 0,49
(Measuring distance: 1.5 cm)
Wiko – UPULSE 0,18 1,18
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Gigaset – Gigaset 185 0,19 1,11
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Samsung – Galaxy Note10+ 0,19 1,4
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Wiko VIEW PRIME 0,19 1,62
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Archos Access 57 0,2 1,81
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 0,21 1,52
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Samsung – Galaxy A80 0,22 1,43
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
LG – LG G7 ThinQ 0,24 1,47
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Samsung – Galaxy A8 0,24 1,25
(measuring distance: 0.5 cm)
Samsung – Galaxy S20 FE 0,241 1,447
(Measuring distance: 0.5 cm)

Also interesting: iPhone comparison – these Apple smartphones emit the strongest radiation

Is cell phone radiation dangerous at all?

So far, there are no really conclusive findings on the long-term effects of cell phone radiation. Time and again, studies emerge that show an increased risk of cancer, while others seek to refute this. A group of experts from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) sat down in Lyon in 2011 to evaluate all the available scientific evidence. Kurt Straif, chair of the IARC’s Monographs Program, said of the findings at the time, “It is not clearly established at the moment that the use of cell phones can cause cancer in humans.” Nevertheless, the experts agreed to classify cell phone radiation as “possibly carcinogenic.” There are indications from individual studies of a possibly increased risk of brain tumors, especially among heavy cell phone users. However, the assessment will be reviewed in a few years when new study results are available.

So if you want to be on the safe side, you should opt for a smartphone with a low SAR value.