Cellphone Version of a Hummer?
July 1, 2009 10:15 AM   Subscribe

Does anyone have experience with mil-spec cellphones?

My contract is up, and, even though I don't need a new phone, I am considering getting a phone what will take more abuse than my present one will. AT&T offers the
Motorola Tundra or Samsung Rugby as options for mil-spec phones.

Does anyone have either of these, and, if so, what do you think?

Part of me feels like I'm buying a Hummer, but since my job takes me to construction sites, and crawling around in attics and tunnels some of the time, I think it may be useful to have a phone I don't have to worry about as much.

Any thoughts? I do not need a smartphone, but I want to make sure I don't make a dumb choice, either.
posted by Danf to Technology (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Here's a video of a Samsung Rugby being put through its paces at a Renaissance Faire. Looks pretty sturdy to me.
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:12 AM on July 1, 2009

I don't really have any experience with rugged cellphones, but I would think that something that wasn't a clamshell model would be better at withstanding a rough environment.

I remember talking to someone who worked in a call center where she did support for people whose cellphones had broken, and problems with phones with hinges tended to make up a large part of incoming calls. So basically, the less moving parts you have the better.
posted by bjrn at 1:27 PM on July 1, 2009

My colleague just got a Tundra after killing his BB Pearl. So far he likes it, says reception is OK. Only thing I have against it is I don't like antenna that stick out and pock me when the phone is in my pocket.
posted by arcticseal at 1:44 PM on July 1, 2009

We had a previous incarnation of The tundra at my last two landscaping jobs. We never broke the clamshell actually; occasionally the antennae. Other than that, they worked well in spite of being constantly dropped and totally filthy. I took mine home as my regular phone too. It got good reception and sounded better than the phone I have now.

Once my colleague dropped one into her steaming cup of tea in the truck. We had to replace that one completely.
posted by oneirodynia at 7:04 PM on July 1, 2009

I used to have a Motorola i350. I dropped it many, many times, once in about two feet of water. I had to search for it. It still worked. I could use it regularly for three days before I had to charge it.

It wasn't very sexy, but it worked great. No reception problems, ever.

In my opinion the other, clamshell-model milspec phones won't be that much more durable than just a regular phone. Plus they're bound to be expensive. My i350 cost $60.
posted by atchafalaya at 8:38 PM on July 1, 2009

You can always get an otter case for whatever phone you do decide on. They'll stand up to just about anything. They have cases for most blackberry models, iphones, etc as well.
posted by Kellydamnit at 1:01 AM on July 2, 2009

In today's Telegraph comes this announcement: Land Rover unveils World's Toughest Phone. It's supposed to be resistant to dust, dirt, shocks, drops, crushing, water, and temperature extremes. Looks like it's being marketed to the UK at the moment.
posted by exphysicist345 at 5:24 PM on July 2, 2009

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