UKC

Rugged Phone Suggestions

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 Root1 17:44 Thu

Has anyone got any recommendations for a decent rugged phone suitable for mountain navigation in the uk?

In reply to Root1:

Cat S42 works for me.

 deepsoup 20:11 Thu
In reply to Root1:

I bought an Ulefone Armor 8 via ebay quite recently, which regularly comes sea kayaking with me in a buoyancy aid pocket (with a screen protector on, but no case).  I'm very happy with it.  If you're looking for an Android phone that isn't too spendy I'd cheerfully recommend one of those.

 nathan79 20:37 Thu
In reply to deepsoup:

I also have one of these, bought back in October if I recall correctly. Functionality is fine, definitely rugged- I've dropped mine a fair few times so there are a couple of wee dings/scratches on the metal bits at the side but stands up well to abuse.

I think it was ~£120 via Amazon at the time I bought.

 MikeR 20:51 Thu
In reply to deepsoup:

Seconded (or thirded), although I've got the Armor 7E, not sure what the difference is compared to the Armor 8.

I too, have extensively tested it's ruggedness and can confirm it has survived numerous drops and bashes, a few nicks, and some superficial cracks in the screen, although they may just be on the screen cover. I can still happily submerge it and I also take it sea kayaking with me, takes great photos.

I've never used it for mountain nav, but the GPS seems a lot more accurate than my last phone (A Nokia something or other).

 Andypeak 22:27 Thu
In reply to Root1:

I'm happy with my CAT S42. Certainly very rugged and has navigated me through many a Scottish backpacking trip with the aid of OS maps app. It 3 years old now and has been well used and abused with no noticeable loss in performance or battery life which is nice. It is pretty basic compared to modern smart phones but certainly does everything I want it to do. It would be nice if it had a better camera but I'm not sure if a better camera can be made to be so rugged. 

 timjones 07:54 Fri
In reply to Root1:

I wouldn't bother with a "rugged phone".

My phones get far more abuse in my day to day work as a farmer than they could ever experience in the hills and a Galaxy S7 just keeps on going.

In reply to Root1:

I use my phone for nav etc in and also for writing reports on at work. I'm a wind turbine technician so it needs to be able to deal with the elements and handle occasional falls.

I speculatively bought a Doogee S80 about 2.5 years ago and haven't managed to break it yet, which is something of a record for me. Its got a massive battery so lasts about 4 or 5 days of proper usage but an unfortunate side effect of that is that its big and weighs a ton.

 Root1 08:44 Fri
In reply to timjones:

> I wouldn't bother with a "rugged phone".

> My phones get far more abuse in my day to day work as a farmer than they could ever experience in the hills and a Galaxy S7 just keeps on going.

I get what you are saying but I need one that can be used with wet fingers.

 Marek 09:36 Fri
In reply to Root1:

Another satisfied Ulefone Armor 7 user. Stuck a Garmin mount on the back and it does service as my bike sat-nav/dashboard (no extra case). Battery lasts a long time (~ 5% per hour navigating, longer than me), but it is quite heavy compared to a more svelte fashion smartphone.

 timjones 10:12 Fri
In reply to Root1:

It seems to work fine with rain, mud and cowmuck as long as you scrape the excess off your fingers before using it

 Root1 11:13 Fri
In reply to Andypeak:

Andy, can you download maps direct to the sd card or does it need to be done via a computer.? the Viewranger instructions are a little vague on this.

 deepsoup 11:26 Fri
In reply to timjones:

> It seems to work fine with rain, mud and cowmuck as long as you scrape the excess off your fingers before using it

And conversely, the touch screen on a waterproof smartphone won't work at all well with water actually on the screen (and dripping off fingers).  Ruggedised or not, you'd still have to be able to shake the excess off your hands and keep the rain off the screen to be able to use it for navigation in a downpour.

In reply to deepsoup:

> And conversely, the touch screen on a waterproof smartphone won't work at all well with water actually on the screen (and dripping off fingers).  Ruggedised or not, you'd still have to be able to shake the excess off your hands and keep the rain off the screen to be able to use it for navigation in a downpour.


I remember my old phone going doolally when trying to use it in a drizzle. Touchscreens and rain do not mix!

 Root1 12:17 Fri
In reply to Toerag:

> I remember my old phone going doolally when trying to use it in a drizzle. Touchscreens and rain do not mix!

My current phone screen works fine inside a dry bag.

 deepsoup 13:38 Fri
In reply to Toerag:

> I remember my old phone going doolally when trying to use it in a drizzle.

Mine too.  The Ulefone is better than that, to the point that I can use it reasonably easily with wet hands whilst paddling, but it's still unusable with proper rain (or sea spray) hitting the screen.  The Armor8 has a 'smart button' on the side that you can assign various functions to, which can be used as the 'shutter' button to use the camera underwater.  I have a 'proper' camera for that, so haven't got around to learning how to use it.

I bought the phone thinking I'd quite like to use it as a GPS, but it isn't really practical.  Any time the screen is active and the display visible, drops randomly hitting the screen do random things.  There's probably a way I could keep the screen locked but turn the display on and off with that 'smart' button, but I've not got around to properly trying to find a way yet.  (I don't really need the phone for nav, it'd just be nice sometimes to see speed and course over the ground while paddling - in tidal waters they're often very different to the speed and direction you're travelling across the water.)

 deepsoup 13:40 Fri
In reply to Root1:

> My current phone screen works fine inside a dry bag.

While rain is actually hitting the 'screen'?  I think I'd just stick with that if I were you.

 Root1 15:39 Fri
In reply to deepsoup:

> While rain is actually hitting the 'screen'?  I think I'd just stick with that if I were you.

Batteries pants tho.

 Andypeak 16:48 Fri
In reply to Root1:

Ive never used viewer ranger. I use the free version of OS maps and use the free codes that come with paper maps to get access to them on my phone. These work fine directly downloaded to the phone and don't need the use of a computer

 Root1 16:51 Fri
In reply to Andypeak

> Ive never used viewer ranger. I use the free version of OS maps and use the free codes that come with paper maps to get access to them on my phone. These work fine directly downloaded to the phone and don't need the use of a computer.

Thanks for that

I am going to get a cat S42. It's only being used for nav so doesn't need to be too powerful


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