Top Rugged Phones and Phone Cases

Top Rugged Phones and Phone Cases Replacing your smartphone screen is not fun. It’s expensive and avoidable.

There are a couple solutions to this problem: purchase a durable phone case or get yourself a phone built for rugged environments.

Here is a breakdown of the most reputable phone cases that can prevent the cracking of your screen, followed by a breakdown of rugged phones that can do the same:

1. Ballistic Case Company

First of all, Ballistic provides cases for a variety of phones including: Apple, HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Sony, Sprint, Verizon, and Microsoft.

The case that protects your phone from the most is their Tough Jacket Maxx™ case. However, it is not available for every phone model. To give you a further breakdown, here is the protection the case claims to provide:

  • Reinforced Ballistic Corners® that provide protection against cracked screens due to corner drops
  • Raised lips and corners provide protection from surface shock and scratches
  • 7 ft. high impact drop protection
  • Multiple layers
  • Replaceable screen protector
  • Opening and port covers
  • Rugged holster clip available

Does it live up to its hype?

Reviews online claim that it has protected their phones. However, the only concerns with the case were:

  • The case grips to your pocket when you pull it out.
  • The holder that clips to you is not as durable as the phone case and may break in a fall, however the reviews claimed that their phones were not damaged, only the clip.

2. Otterbox

Otterbox’s rugged phone cases are part of the “Defender Series”. The only devices suitable for this case are a few models of the Apple iPhone, a few models of the Samsung Galaxy, and a few models of the Apple iPad Air.

To further breakdown the case, here are the protection they claim to have:

  • Drop protection
  • Dust protection
  • Screen protection
  • Scratch protection

Does it live up to its hype?

There are plenty of reviews online saying how awesome this phone case is, and only a few reviews that state the case did not protect their phone. However, some common complaints are:

  • Only Apple phone chargers that came with your iPhone fit the iPhone version of this case.
  • If you bought an Apple phone charger from Amazon or another third party, the plug was too big for the charging jack (so it required taking off the case to charge the phone).

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3. Lifeproof

All of Lifeproof’s cases claim to be rugged. However, the case we would consider the most rugged and able to withstand drops is their FRĒ phone case. However, the sister version of the case (FRĒ POWER) is appealing as well because it comes with a built in back up battery case that will give you 2X the battery life of your phone.

To further break down these cases, here are the items they claim to protect your phone from:

  • Water
  • Dirt
  • Snow
  • Drop

Does it live up to its hype?

Most of the reviews claim the cases saved their phones from rugged environments, however the biggest complaints were:

  • People on the other end of the phone could barely hear them speak
  • They couldn’t hear their phone ring because the sound was muffled
  • The case distorted images while the flash was on

4. Griffin

The most rugged phone cases from Griffin phone cases are from the survivor collection. Our personal favorite out of the survivor collection is the Survivor Summit phone case. It can withstand the falls higher than the other cases in the collection can.

To further breakdown the case, here is the protection the case claims to have:

  • 10-foot (3-meter) drops onto concrete
  • Rain
  • Dirt
  • Mud
  • Snow
  • Splashes
  • Screen damage

Does it live up to its hype?

Most of the reviews were positive, however here were a few of the complaints:

  • The case adds extra size to the phone
  • Plastic screen protector does protect the screen, but the plastic itself scratches easily
  • Plastic screen protector isn’t directly touching the screen, so sometimes it’s hard to use and/or is uncomfortable to the touch
  • Headphone jack way too small for some headphones

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Breakdown of the most reputable phones built for rugged environments:

1. Cat Rugged Phones

Cat Rugged phones are pretty cool. Here are some of the reasons the phone holds up in rugged conditions:

  • Waterproof and the screen can be used even with wet fingers
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Dustproof
  • Resistant to high temperatures and multiple 6 ft. drops onto concrete
  • Specially built for the outdoors, the S40 boasts an ultra-bright screen and enhanced audio quality
  • Largest capacity battery yet gives you up to 18 hrs. talk-time and an impressive 39 day stand-by time, perfect for working long hours on site.

2. Sonim

Somin phones look like regular old phones with keypads, but they are smartphones with a numeric keypad. Here are some of the reasons the phone holds up in rugged conditions:

  • Touch screen that can be viewed in direct sunlight
  • Extra loud speaker
  • Noise cancellation
  • Resistant to drops, water, oil/chemicals, temperature, pressure, puncture, and shock

The winning solution: Cat Rugged Smartphones 

Cat smartphone are perfect because they are high-end 4G smartphones designed for rugged environments.

Top Rugged Phones and Phone Cases

So, if you’re switching from an iPhone or a Samsung, you’ll still get that high-end 4G smartphone experience. In fact, the Cat phone runs on Android, which is the same operating system as the Samsung Galaxy.

In addition to holding up in rugged environments, we chose Cat rugged smartphones as the winner because they have the most use to the construction industry.

  • The Cat smartphone has just as good of an operating system as other smartphones out there- it runs on Android.
  • Their smartphones have 4G LTE for ultra fast data transmission.
  • Their new phone, the S60, has thermal imaging!
  • Their smartphones come with a pre-loaded, industry-dedicated app store, which ensures that their customers are fully equipped when on site with the tools needed to get the job done.

Learn more about how the construction industry feels about their current management tools, along with their successes and challenges as we enter the new year. Download the 2017 State Of Construction Management Report to gain access to the full report.