Knowledge Base | Apple iPhone Safety Guidelines & RF Exposure Information

Find Your Safe Distance

Most of us may already be aware that the FCC has adopted limits for safe exposure to radiofrequency (RF) energy for cell phone manufacturers. These limits are given in terms of a unit referred to as the Specific Absorption Rate (SAR), which is a measure of the amount of radio frequency energy absorbed by the body when using a mobile or cellular phone.

The FCC limit for public exposure from cellular telephones is a SAR level of 1.6 watts per kilogram (1.6 W/kg).

What many consumers also need to understand is that for these RF absorption levels to remain at or below these FCC considered “safe levels for RF exposure” you need to also consider where on the body and how far from the body the cell phone is placed. For the Apple iPhone brand of cell phones, we noted a variation for safe placement from 5mm away from the body to up to 15mm away.

What does 5mm, 10mm or 15mm distance away from the body actually look like in terms of the clothing layers we normally wear?

All of Apple’s iPhones include this paragraph except that the distance varies:

“To reduce exposure to RF energy, use a hands-free option, such as the built-in speakerphone, the supplied headphones, or other similar accessories. Carry iPhone at least X [X equals 5mm, 10mm or 15mm depending on make & model] away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels. Cases with metal parts may change the RF performance of the device, including its compliance with RF exposure guidelines, in a manner that has not been tested or certified.

To see where your personal iPhone fits in the list of RF safety factors for SAR and body placement, here’s an all-in-one place, quick reference guide. This, along with updated Apple product and phone information can be found in more detail on Apple’s website here: http://www.apple.com/legal/rfexposure/

If you aren’t an Apple iPhone user and want to find out this information for your Android phone, please see our Android cell phone safe distance page: Android Cell Phone Safety Guidelines & RF Exposure Information

Apple iPhone RF Exposure Information by Make & Model:


iPhone 3GS: Carry iPhone at least 15mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 3GS: The highest SAR values are as follows:
Model – A1325, A1303
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 0.67

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.40
Body: 0.45


iPhone 4: GSM & CDMA Models: Carry iPhone at least 10mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 4: The highest SAR values are as follows:
Model A1332
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.17
Body: 1.11

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.93
Body: 0.74

Model A1349
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.18
Body: 0.87


iPhone 4S: Carry iPhone at least 10mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 4S: The highest SAR values are as follows:
Model A1332
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.18
Body: 1.19

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.99
Body: 0.99


iPhone 5: Carry iPhone at least 10mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 5: The highest SAR values are as follows:
Model A1428, A1429
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.25
Body: 1.18

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.90
Body: 0.95


iPhone 5C: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 5C: The highest SAR values are as follows:
Model A1526, A1507,A1516,A1529
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.18

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.96
Body: 1.00

Model A1532, A1456
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.19

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.99
Body: 0.95


iPhone 5S: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 5S: The highest SAR values are as follows:
Model A1528, A1457, A1518, A1530 
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.18
Body: 1.12

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.98
Body: 0.97

Model A1533, A1453
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.18
Body: 1.18

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.93
Body: 0.99


iPhone 6: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 6: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1549
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.08
Body: 1.14

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.93
Body: 0.97

Model A1586
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.18
Body: 1.18

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.97
Body: 0.98

Model A1589
2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.38
Body: 1.38


iPhone 6 Plus: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 6 Plus: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1522
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.14
Body: 1.16

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.91
Body: 0.99

Model A1524
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.19

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.91
Body: 1.00

Model A1593
2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.37


iPhone 6S: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 6S: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1633, A1688, A1691, A1700
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.14
Body: 1.14

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.87
Body: 0.98


iPhone 6S Plus: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 6S Plus: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1634, A1687, A1690, A1699
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.12
Body: 1.14

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.93
Body: 0.98


iPhone SE: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone SE: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1662
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.17
Body: 1.19

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.97
Body: 0.99

Model A1723, A1724
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.17
Body: 1.17

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 0.72
Body: 0.97


iPhone 7: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 7: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1660, A1780
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.20

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.37
Body: 1.39

Model A1779
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.20

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.37
Body: 1.39


iPhone 7 Plus: Carry iPhone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.

iPhone 7 Plus: The highest SAR values are as follows:

Model A1661, A1786
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.17

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.34
Body: 0.95

Model A1785
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.19

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: .96
Body: 1.29

Model A1784
1.6 W/kg (over 1 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.19
Body: 1.19

2.0 W/kg (over 10 g) SAR Limit
Head: 1.24
Body: 1.00

~ Last Updated: March 24, 2017