pH in Soft Drinks
Smartphone-based determination of pH after reaction with a chemically bound pH indicator

A dynamic scene of a cola being poured into a glass filled with ice cubes, creating a lively splash and showcasing the drink’s fizzy nature


The pH value of beverages such as soft drinks is one of the most important parameters that gives information about the quality of the product. The pH value of soft drinks typically ranges from pH 2.5 – 3.5.1

An easy way to check the pH of your soft drinks are test strips.

Analyze your MQuant® test strips with your smartphone for fast, convenient, and precise results. Test the simplest way to determine pH in aqueous solutions. This low-priced and easy-to-use analytical detection system provides reliable quantification of water, food & beverage samples for customers from research, industry, environment and diagnostics.

The following application note describes the determination of the pH value in soft drinks using the MQuant® pH test strips in combination with the MQuant® StripScan app.

Experimental Method

Special indicator dyes are covalently bound to the reagent papers and change their colors depending on the pH value of the sample.

Sample Material

Soft drinks (e.g., Cola, Energy Drinks)

Measuring Range

pH 0 - 14

Reagents and Accessories


MQuant® pH-indicator strips pH 0 – 14 Universal indicator (1.09535)


  • MQuant® Card (provided with the test strip box)
  • MQuant® StripScan app (can be downloaded via Apple App Store or Google Play Store)

Sample Preparation

The sample can be analysed in its original form.

Sample Analysis

For analysis, follow this procedure:

  1. Start the app.
  2. Get your MQuant® pH indicator test strip and the
    MQuant® Card ready.
  3. Dip the test strip into the undiluted sample (15 – 25 °C) for approx. 2 seconds, ensuring that the reaction zones are completely immersed.
  4. Shake off excess liquid from the strip and dry the backside of the strip using a paper towel.
  5. Select the parameter pH (1.09535) in the app. A countdown is displayed on the screen, which begins immediately after selecting the parameter pH.
  6. Just before the end of the countdown, place the test strip on the MQuant® Card.
  7. After the waiting time is elapsed, place the MQuant® Card with the test strip within the viewfinder on your phone screen, and align the camera along the reference points.
  8. The picture is captured automatically by the camera of the smartphone.
  9. The result is displayed on the screen.


In Table 1 is a comparison shown for the pH determination of 4 soft drinks with test strips using a visual and StripScan read out and the measurement with a pH electrode.

pH Value

Table 1.Comparison with visual evaluation and pH electrode.


The MQuant® pH test strip in combination with the MQuant® StripScan app is a quick and easy way to analyze the pH-values of fruit juices. The measured values are comparable to those measured with the pH electrode.

As always, (whenever trying a new method of analysis) it is recommended to do plausibility checks and to compare the results with a reference method.

For More Information



Reddy A, Norris DF, Momeni SS, Waldo B, Ruby JD. 2016. The pH of beverages in the United States. The Journal of the American Dental Association. 147(4):255-263.
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