British telephone retailer Tuffphones has unveiled a brand new vary of onerous-sporting handsets aimed toward development staff and outdoor fanatics.
It is the newest addition to a variety of additional-sturdy Android units within the rising marketplace for rugged telephones.
The BBC took them to a constructing website to attempt them out.
Development giants De Walt and Cat licence comparable rugged handsets, that are topic to extra rigorous testing than strange smartphones.
Jaguar Land Rover has additionally introduced a partnership with telephone producer Bullitt Group and says it intends to launch a smartphone with a “mixture of sturdiness and magnificence” in 2017.
Nevertheless, now Chichester-based mostly Tuffphones has made its first foray into promoting its personal model, which is being manufactured in Shenzhen.
Like lots of its rivals, the Tuffphone telephones, that are priced between £228 and £389, include thicker Gorilla glass screens and are licensed to be mud resistant and waterproof for a number of minutes at a time – however not one of the fashions function on the newest model of Android (Marshmallow).
Safety specialists all the time advocate utilizing the most recent model of an working system as they’re often probably the most safe.
The BBC examined out the 4G-enabled Tuffphone four hundred, priced £288, on a constructing website and located it might obtain calls beneath water after a number of minutes of being submerged, survive a tumble in a cement mixer filled with sand and will nonetheless make calls and get on-line after being dropped from scaffolding over 2m excessive.
We have been suggested by the retailer that it might not stand up to “a direct blow from a hammer”.
On the finish of our experiment the system display was scratched and the handset vibrated for a couple of minutes – nevertheless it was additionally nonetheless functioning.
Whereas most of the newest smartphones, together with the Samsung S7, are additionally waterproof, the S7 couldn’t obtain calls whereas beneath water in our check.
Priced at £529, the Cat S60 has significantly extra options, together with thermal imaging performance. It additionally survived each the water and sand checks however its proprietor was not eager on experimenting with the peak drop.
The rugged telephone market is forecast to account for round 18 million handset gross sales from a worldwide predicted general determine of 1.5 billion in 2016, telephone analyst Ben Wooden informed the BBC.
“It is the lengthy tail of the smartphone market, there are such a lot of little area of interest alternatives that exist and that is the place these guys are enjoying,” he stated.
However why not simply purchase a sturdy case for an present handset?
A rugged telephone supplies the comfort of an “all-in-one” answer, Mr Wooden stated, however they’ve one other key benefit – as a result of they’re chunkier, heavier units, they are typically fitted with greater, longer-lasting batteries.
“Individuals need a good sustainable battery and most of the people once they’re utilizing a smartphone at this time discover they wrestle to get via the day,” he stated.
One other various is to purchase an affordable however primary handset – though smartphone performance is turning into extra important for individuals within the business, Mr Wooden added.
“Individuals in development need to have entry to e mail, a very good digital camera, they want to take a look at plans,” he stated. “They want a better telephone, a much bigger display.”
Nevertheless no telephone is invincible, he added.
“Several types of glass, several types of supplies, totally different designs will give you a specific amount of rugged functionality however make no mistake, any system will break in case you actually need to break it,” he stated.
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