Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017: BIG, BOLD and SMART

Once again, it’s the end of another month in the year 2017, and as you know, it’s time for our monthly ritual – the TechPill. Last month’s TechPill had its focus on the “TIME to be SMART” where the best smartwatches of 2017 were highlighted. A brief history of smartwatches, evolution and benefits were likewise treated.

However, this month of June, we shall be looking at the hugeness, the ruggedness, and the durability of smartphones under the header “Big, Bold and Smart: Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017.

When you hear the word “rugged“, what first comes to mind? Is it Strength? Or Energy? Or is it Power? Toughness? Anyway, whenever I hear “Rugged”, toughness is the follow-up word that comes to my head. To me, they are synonymous.

In this present time of living, the average smartphone is fragile; easy to break or shatter on small fall to the ground or whenever it goes toe-to-toe with any hard object(s). There are even times and situations where the smallest of objects (like a key or a tiny rock) could crack the screen of your big expensive smartphone. This, to the individual that spent a significant amount of time and money, saving up to purchase the smartphone, is a sad experience. That’s where rugged smartphones come in.

There is also a particular occupation that subjects one’s smartphone to easy breakage or damage. Take civil engineers, for example, day and night of exposure to heavy metals, machinery and tools will do extensive damage to an engineer using let’s say a Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) device. But using a smartphone that can perform like the Galaxy A3  and the physical build to withstand drops from some meters, extremes of temperature, dust, and even resistant to water is best suited for a person with such profession.

Same can be said for individuals that are adventure-oriented or people who find themselves climbing rocks, swimming pools, walking and breaking the ice or maybe in the Sahara or some other deserts.

Big, Bold and Smart: Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017.

Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017
Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017

The devices below are the top rugged smartphones of the year 2017. Check them out below;

Ulefone Armor

Ulefone is a renowned China-based smartphone manufacturer. The company produces beautiful devices ranging from high-end devices to the mid-range ones. The company took a decision to delve into the rugged smartphone production and sale, and the Ulefone Armor was the end-product. The specs of the Ulefone Armor are great and qualifies the device to make it onto our list of Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017. See full details of the device below.

Ulefone Armor Rugged Smartphone

The Ulefone Armor is a petite smartphone that does big things. Talk about “small but mighty”. The device sports a 4.7-inch display screen that is well protected against accidental drop by the factory built Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection made for the screen; this right here is one attribute of ruggedness. The second is the body of the Ulefone Armor which is made with double-layer polycarbonate-TPU material that makes it durable in the face of great impact with hard surfaces / objects and helps it to withstand a temperature range of -20℃ – 80℃.

Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017
Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – Ulefone Armor

And lastly, the one attribute that a rugged smartphone shouldn’t fail to have – an IP68 certification comes with the Ulefone Armor. This certification simply implies that it’s resistant to both water and dust. Other secondary/complementary features of the Ulefone Armor include massive 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM (expandable to 128GB with microSD), 13MP rear camera with Flash, 5MP front camera, Dual SIM slot with 4G LTE support, 1.3GHz octa-core MT6753 processor, packs a 3500mAh battery and runs on the Android Marshmallow v6.0.

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Ulefone Armor 2

Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – Ulefone Armor 2

Really, you do not need to be told, do you? That the Ulefone Armor 2 is a schemed up version of the Ulefone Armor. Ulefone decided to take the ruggedness game a step higher, and the Ulefone Armor 2 was what we were gifted.

First off, a peek at the Armor 2, and its general body design would reveal what kind of device the Armor 2 is – big, rugged, unusual, and somewhat scary and awkward. Designed with the dual material (plastic and metal) as well as about 3 to 4 different colour combinations that blend perfectly to give the device a pretty amazing aesthetic.

To the central rugged features of the Armor 2, the 5-inch screen (0.3-inch bigger than the Ulefone Armor) will not break, scratch or shatter easily; thanks to the Corning Gorilla Glass 4 protection. Asides getting a rock-solid hardware experience on the Armor 2, the super fast 2.5GHz 64-bit Octa-core processor embedded on the MediaTek Helio P25 (MT6757T) chipset, improved 6GB RAM and 64GB inbuilt storage, 13MP primary camera and 5MP secondary/selfie camera equally provides flawless and fluid performance.

The Ulefone Armor 2 also runs on the latest Android v7.0 Nougat operating system, an improvement from the Android Marshmallow on the Ulefone Armor. With the Armor 2, it’s more ruggedness, more efficiency!

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HOMOM HT20

HOMTOM HT20 4G smartphone

The Homtom HT20 is rugged and smart…but not all that BIG. The device is relatively slimmer than its fellow sturdy pairs. The HT20 is 76mm wide, 152mm long and 13.6 mm thick. Also, you might have one way or the other synonymized ruggedness with bulkiness or heaviness, but at 227grams, the Homtom HT20 is quite a lightweight, rugged device.

On this device, there’s the thing called “3 layer proofing” that protects the Homtom HT20 from every external force that could lead to damage. The body of the HT20 is made of magnesium alloy and polycarbonate substances which allow for resistance to water and another form of pressure. Like another rugged device, the Homtom HT20 is also dustproof, smash proof and scratch proof.

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HOMTOM HT20 PRO

Homtom ht20 pro review
Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – HOMTOM HT20 Pro

Basically, the HOMTOM HT20 PRO smartphone is one of the strongest you’d ever come across in the smartphone market at the moment. Just as the name reveals, this device is a scaled-up version of the HOMTOM HT20; which is a beast in itself. The HT20 Pro has the same design as the processing HOMTOM HT20. Same body structure, same colour variants and same keys arrangement. However, few differentiating features are distinguishing the HOMTOM HT20 from the HT20 Pro.

Armed with features like the 4.7-inch scratch-proof Corning Gorilla Glass screen, improved 3GB RAM, 32GB inbuilt storage, IP68 waterproof, dustproof and dirt-proof and a monster 3,500mAh removable battery, the Homtom HT20 Pro is one certain rugged device the average individual concerned about device durability should have.

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Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4

It is a well known and proven fact that when Samsung comes up with a device, it is always of the best; nothing short of the best. The Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4 is the latest device in Samsung’s rugged Xcover series. The Galaxy Xcover 3 was last year’s flagship of the Xcover series while the Galaxy Xcover 4 is the 2017 representative of the series. Announce March 2017; this device is one helluva strong one whenever ruggedness is mentioned.

Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4
Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4

The Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4 features a 4.8-inch HD display with a screen resolution of 1280 by 720 pixels resolution. The Xcover 4 can also withstand a fall of up to 1.2 metres due to the device’s US Military Standard MIL-STD 810G certification. Likewise, the IP68 certification allows the Xcover 4 to resist water to a depth of 1 meter for up to 30 minutes and also resist dust. The Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4 is definitely one of the best-rugged smartphones to get this 2017.

Other secondary features of the Galaxy Xcover 4 include a 13MP rear camera, 5MP front camera, Android Nougat v7.0, 2GB of RAM, 16 inbuilt storage, 4G connectivity support, and a minute 2,800mAh battery which is removable and replaceable.

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AGM A8

AGM A8
Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – AGM A8

The AGM A8 is a rock! This device I’d say was made for individuals who journey or adventure or travel a lot. I mean, let’s face it, trips like mountaineering, hiking, scuba diving, rafting, kayaking, canoeing or sand-boarding surely don’t require your very fragile smartphone or your costly and posh device with no protection whatsoever (of course you don’t want it tripping off into some water body or on a rock surface). Rugged journeys, Rugged devices! That’s the logic. And the AGM A8 is the perfect device for that perfect trip.

AGM A8

A minimalistic but solid appearance is what you get to see at first glance of the A8. The materials used to design the body of the device provides it shock and dust resistance and also protection against extremes of temperature ranging from -40 degrees to 80 Degree. So, be it the Sahara or a lush tropical island or a rain forest​, the AGM A8 is good to go.

AGM A8

The AGM A8 sports a large 5-inch display with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection for resistance to scratch and cracks. And going by the manufacturer’s information, the AGM A8 can withstand a fall against mud or rough surface from a height of 1.5meters without getting damaged. Pretty outstanding.

Side features of the A8 include a large but non-removable 4,050mAh battery, 3GB RAM and 32GB internal storage, 13MP rear camera and 2MP selfie cam, and like the Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4, runs on the latest Android Nougat v7.0.

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UHANS U300

Do you work in a rugged environment? Or do you want a waterproof and dust-proof smartphone? If you answered yes any of the questions above, then you should meet the Uhans U300; codenamed by us as the “ruggedy baba”.

Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – The Uhans U300 smartphone

The Uhans U300 is waterproof and dust-proof. It owes this to the IP65 certification. And just so you know, the Uhans U300 is also a slim, rugged smartphone. At 12mm thickness size, it is even thicker than the Homtom HT20 which is about 13mm when the thickness is measured, and lighter (at 255grams) compared to the HT20‘s 227grams.

The Uhans U300 5.5” IPS high-quality, and bright display with Full HD resolution makes it the qualify as the rugged smartphone with the best display so far in this rugged smartphone series. Nothing short of a beautiful and colourful visual experience is what the screen provides. And as a powerful device that it is, the screen is duly protected by a scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass 4.

Secondary smartphone features of the Uhans U300 include the beautifying leather cover, a large 4,750mAh, 13MP and 5MP primary and secondary camera, OTG support, Android Marshmallow v6.0 OS, fingerprint scanner among others.

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BLUBOO R1

The BLUBOO R1 is the first Rugged smartphone from the Chinese smartphone company, Bluboo. Breaking down the name of the device, the “R” stands for “Rugged” while the “1” stands for “First”. This “R1” combo is a further indication that the Bluboo R1 is the company’s first rugged smartphone.

Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017
Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017 – the rugged Bluboo R1

The BLUBOO R1’s physical design and appearance reek strength and ruggedness. The R1 is big, likewise the battery. The battery capacity is capped at a monster 7150mAh which has a long lasting duration of 2-3 days of usage on a full charge before needing to recharge.

The Bluboo R1 has a large 5.5-inch IPS display with 1080 x 1920 pixels resolution. The display is firmly protected against scratch and crack by the latest version of Corning Gorilla Glass – the Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

With the IP68 certification, the Bluboo R1 can stay up to 1 meter underwater and also resistant to dust. One feature I also particularly find interesting is the wireless charging on the BLUBOO R1.

The R1 is equipped with 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage, Android Nougat v7.0, USB Type-C, 21 megapixels rear camera, 13 megapixels front camera for bright selfies and a quick unlock fingerprint scanner.

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That’s all for now on Top Rugged Smartphones of 2017. The release of these devices by their respective manufacturers signals a new dawn and revolution in the smartphone game. With the rate at which smartphone users purchase accessories like pouches, screen guards and screen protectors to protect their devices, I, personally, foresee a time in the future where all smartphone manufacturers will incorporate some inbuilt protection features to toughen up their products without the need to purchase external accessories.


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2 COMMENTS

  1. Perfect post for me to find today Olanrewaju! I need a phone that can hold up under a lot of situations. I’m not easy on them and have broken more than I care to admit to. Based on this post, I’m going to check out the Samsung one. Been a fan of Samsung products and if they’ve got a rugged phone that can withstand what I put it thru, so long Apple! Thanks for the great info –

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