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23 Best Rated Rugged Smartphones in September 2022

Rugged smartphones as the name refers are phones which might endure the severe attack of the hardware and even the software. Even though there are a host of smartphones which are considered to be rugged but while put to the test, they can fail particularly. So, for this situation, we have checked, evaluated, and carried out some surveys related to the five ideal smartphones at this time.

Those phones are long-lasting, water-resistant, dustproof, and arrive with a durable gorilla screen. They are safe and the efficiency is perfect. Now, let’s check it out below to discover the best rugged smartphones on the current market.

The rugged smartphones list is compiled from brands such as: Ulefone, OUKITEL, DOOGEE, Blackview. This post is based on 6,258 customer reviews. Based on customer data, Phonezoo will make reviews, analyzes and where to buy genuine products.

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Last update on 2022-09-30 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Purchasing tips for the best rugged smartphones

Smartphones are pricey, and they are a bit expensive when they break. This is why consumers are particularly careful with them and regularly focus on expandable warranties or other protective cases. If you are an expert who loves journeys off the beaten path, you already understand it is no life for a good smartphone. Before the following excursion, take into consideration buying the best-rugged smartphones

Unlike other phones, the rugged phones are built to tackle drops and bumps. A lot of versions are seen as all-climate smartphones and might be utilized for freezing or higher temperature. On the other hand, rugged smartphones are regularly utilized in remote and exotic areas so that they are ideal for foreign travel. For this reason, a lot of them can be unlocked and compatible with CDMA or GSM cutting edge technology, and operate through Wi-Fi networks. 

Every rugged smartphone is supported by various functions so that you can be knowing which one is the ideal one to assist you for the following journey. In this part, we want to get you to skim all around these purchasing tips that include information on different attributes and products worth buying or some of your favorites. 

Primary considerations

Fundamental versus advanced

The rugged smartphones might be split into double types such as basic and advanced. 

  • Basic rugged smartphones are these with fewer attributes and capabilities and more regularly than not, they are the same as traditional pattern mobile phones. They are regularly bought from those who want the smartphone in case of an emergency while going abroad but who possess various gadgets to cover different tech demands. 
  • Advanced rugged smartphones are on par with phones and also resemble them. To secure the screens and other related parts, those smartphones can be encased with the shock-proofing external shell. Specific versions might be used for Wi-Fi calling, during some doubles with long-range talkies. 


The rugged smartphones are assisted by the Global Systems for GSM technology, and others even contain the code-division multiple access (CDMA) technology. If you do not know the terms, GSM is utilized by other nations around the globe for creating wireless calls through networks. CDMA cutting edge technology is even utilized particularly around America and Russia. If you love the versatility to take the rugged smartphone anywhere across the globe, you can spend for one which brings either GSM or CDMA capabilities. 

  • GSM smartphones will use SIM cards that permit you to turn wireless providers whenever you love. Visitors regularly want to jump from wireless providers while paying more visitings to various nations. For this reason, they select the rugged smartphones with GSM cutting edge technology. They might straightforwardly turn out the SIM card whenever they want. 
  • CDMA smartphones are not supported with SIM cards that show your smartphone can be connected to the wireless provider in which you bought it. When GSM is utilized for more areas around the globe, other visitors even want CDMA for journeys to America or Russia. 

Battery life

If you are spending on the rugged smartphone, there is a great opportunity you will be away from the zone in which you could charge the battery for an extended stage of time. The rugged smartphones always possess a long battery life rather than standard smartphones, with some which can last until three days between other charges. The particular versions even support the spare batteries which might be docked into the smartphone.

Being claimed it, it is quite crucial to check the specifications carefully with battery life. When three days feels like a long period, it could not vitally show the smartphone can have juice for the whole three days of speaking. Rather, the period regularly shows the mixed usage that is vitally a speaking time’s average, or standby. 


Hikers or campers frequently spend on the best-rugged smartphones which provide the whole functionality for particular temperatures. When other rugged smartphones could tackle exposure to the heat, you will want to invest in a little to look for ones that might function for the severe climate. Those rugged smartphones are built for the protective shell and other parts that assist the whole functionality in circumstances that fluctuate between 0 and 110 degrees of Fahrenheit. 

Drop protection

It is often something you consider while you purchase the smartphone case. The rugged phones are supported with an integrated heavier-duty case to secure them from drops, particularly for the rocky terrain. 

Not some rugged smartphones provide a similar degree of drop protection, and only the detail precisely how much protection they specifically offer in the drop’s event. Even so, the most long-lasting rugged smartphones are likely to get the bulky shell for other bumper guards, or silicone information to absorb influence. 


The next reason individuals need to invest in rugged smartphones, particularly if they are external enthusiasts is since those smartphones provide the water-resistance. On the other hand, the smartphones with the lower degrees of water resistance could sustain the moisture exposure even though they are not perfect for particular ocean journeys such as rafting. 

Leading rugged smartphones are likely to advertise the IP rating, which shows precisely how much exposure to water they might sustain. Other rugged smartphones get IP68 which shows they might be submerged into the water’s meter for around 30 minutes before being ruined. 

With that claim, it could not mean you can swim with a rugged smartphone rated about IP68 or much more, it is straightforwardly the gauge as to how much water exposure the smartphone might tackle. It even could not show that the smartphone can be water-resistant since it is feasible for water to penetrate the smartphone for exposure. To date, there are not particularly waterproof smartphones on the market, standard or rugged. 


Evaluate your demands before you purchase

It is crucial to spend for a quality rugged smartphone, but there is no need to invest in the attributes you will not take. If you straightforwardly want to make some calls, please stick with something fundamental and take the money for various essentials. 

Prevent from throwing the smartphone

Although it is a rugged smartphone, it is crucial to deal with a gadget with more care to ensure it to be in great circumstances. If so, prevent tossing it, since it can miss the intended area or might sustain damage to internal parts. 

Establish the smartphone before you move

Each smartphone arrives with a learning curve. While you get the journeys scheduled, take the most advantages of time to study how to install and use the rugged smartphone. Otherwise, you might lose precious time fussing with the smartphone when you need to take it.

Best rugged smartphones


The CAT is well-known for construction vehicles, and has particularly dabbled in gadget tech to offer you the ideal phone to partner with the dynamic lifestyle. When you can suppose the smartphone from CAT can be your basic, they provide some variants which sport exceptional durability. 

The S61 we make sure is their great overall rugged phone and one which you can particularly be fond of. Glancing firstly at this version’s durability, that provides IP69 and STD 810G credentials. It shows that it can be cẹrtified water-resistant till three meters for up to one hour, permitting you to submerge this phone for a specific time before getting to survive it. In addition to that, it is even sand, and salt mist that is fabulous for people who will be obtaining the rugged phone above the building sites or along the coast. 

When being particularly long-lasting, the S61 even enhances the attractive attributes which could be used by specialists and those in the construction field. In other words, it can take the most advantages of the FLIR lepton thermal picturing camera, permitting you to monitor creatures in the evening and witness the materials’ heat. In addition to this, the camera’s performance can not stop there, it takes the 16MP rear camera with autofocus and 8MP front camera for central focus. Users might even make the most of the double-LED flash that illuminates the pictures nicely well. The top tech’s pieces are the laser’s inclusion supported with distance measure and the internal air quality monitor to warn you of higher degrees of internal air pollutants during even measuring the levels of humidity. In brief, it might be beneficial again for excursions. 


- The good thermal picturing camera is outstanding.

- The battery life is great.

- It supports the air quality monitor. 


- Not the newest Android Operating System. 

2. Blackview BV9900 Pro

This smartphone is certified with the military standard (MIL-STD 810G) for water-resistant, shock-proofing, and solar radiation. Thus, it permits you to take for all climate conditions even being hard enough to deal with particularly huge drops. 

When being rugged, it even offers the leading technology which might be useful to some. The first of this cutting edge tech is the underwater mode that stimulates you to gently take images and record video underwater. In addition to that, you could finish those operations by your hands, leading you to an interesting underwater experience. The next piece of wonderful technology is the glove mode. It permits you to hold gloves while taking the equipment, something that most phones can not possess, beneficial for people who put on gloves during working. 

The internal parts of Blackview BV9900 are not shabby either, offering the leading efficiency, particularly while caring about the cost of the rugged phone. It can utilize the MT6779 Quad-core processor combined with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage if you want to upgrade. Next, the battery life arrives with a 4380 mAh battery that is particularly long-life and could tackle the day’s usage, but it is not excessive to shout about. It even brings rapid charge functionality so that taking the battery back up to the whole charge is not a painstaking procedure. 


- It supports the Android 10 operating system. 

- Extended storage can be up to 128GB.

- This phone is of great value.


- The camera needs to improve. 


The next version that we want to bring to you is Cat Phones S60. First of all, you should clear out the specifications. The smartphone supports a Snapdragon 617 octa-core processor as well as 3GB of RAM. Moreover, it comes with all 32GB internal storage for the MicroSD card slot to upgrade until 128GB more. Next, the display is around 4.7 inches and HD (high display) resolution screen with sturdy gorilla glass 4. Besides, the back camera is about a 13MP shooter with FLIR. The front camera is about the 5MP shooter that is great for selfies or video chat.

But this is not a reason why you are purchasing this smartphone. You will obtain this smartphone due to double key functions, the best that we can save for last. This smartphone is IP68 and MIL-SPEC 810G certified, which shows the smartphone might be water-resistant, and heat as well. In nutshell, the phone can survive abuse more effectively than other phones on the current market. 

On top of it, the phone brings the FLIR thermal camera with the standard 13MP shooter in the back. What it makes is to offer live thermal pictures from detecting heat-sensitive rays which are intangible to your eyes. 


- Users determine gaps with insulation and electric errors.

- This smartphone captures underwater images and video.

- The camera system is great. 


- Some issues involved in charging. 

4. Kyocera DuraForce E6560 

The Kyocera E6560 is even an outstanding rugged phone. What makes it a fabulous phone is the cost, which is one of the lowest for the rugged phone of its class.

The smartphone arrives with 4.5 inches and an HD display. It supports 2GB of RAM or 16GB storage that might be enlarged to the MicroSD card until 32GB. This one even assists with the 8MP back camera and 2MP front camera that is not that good. 

The primary reason to take this smartphone is that it brings a huge 3100mAh battery that is enough to use all day with more than daily usage. In addition to that, the smartphone even supports the display that permits the operation with saturated hands. 

Besides, the smartphone is even about IP68 and MIL-STD 810G certified, referring to it is resistant to shock and severe climate. Last but not least, here is the ideal smartphone for its cost and surely suggested for individuals who want to take the phone in severe circumstances. 


- This smartphone supports a port and audio jack.

- This product seems solid and assists 16GB storage.

- The wireless charging is fabulous.


- The tiny screen can not have some rooms for icons. 

5. Unihertz Atom

The Atom surely stands out on our list for the ideal rugged phones and you might see why. It shows the smaller factor for the tiny screen size that provides a host of benefits for some. 

However, glancing initially at the rugged attributes, it takes the rubberized body which has executed stringent IP68 examinations for securing towards the shock, vibration, and even high temperatures. The water or dust can be capable of getting routine influences and also below the intense stress. 

The internals will not disappoint both with Octa-Core 2.0 GHz combining with 4GB of RAM and 64GB for storage that creates a particularly better experience, even while intense multitasking. Unluckily, there is no extended storage, but with the availability of 64GB for storage, it can make you go for longer and others do not also fill that. The operating system which is bundled in is Android 9. Next, we have discussed the leading technology which can be put into rugged phones and this version supports some of its own. The integrated Glonass and GPS can permit you to simply situate yourself onto the map and together with the compass, it might be the ideal smartphone for external excursions and routine life. 

Apart from it, this Atom phone is a tiny form factor rugged phone which might defeat against huge counterparts. Sure, it brings a tiny screen, but this could not show that it might not possess the solid internals. 


- This rugged phone is a bit compact.

- It supports both Glonass and GPS.

- This version assists IP68 standard durability.


- Screen could be quite tiny for some.

Frequently Asked Questions about the best rugged smartphones

1. Are rugged smartphones much bigger than standard smartphones?

They are and their big size might be compatible with their integrated protection. Some rugged smartphones do not request the protective case for that reason. No matter if you are utilizing the phone in the slimline case, you will want to be familiar with the extra weight or huge dimensions, or it can not suit the pocket. 

2. Could I use a rugged smartphone like the standard phone?

Sure, you could. If your occupation relates to taking the specific time outdoors or exposure to other factors. A lot of parents spend on rugged smartphones for their children since it is a cost-effective option for phones. Other individuals are straightforwardly hard on smartphones, and substituting them might be pricey. Rather than shelling out an amount of money for insurance, the rugged smartphone can be a suitable option for those people. 

3. Are the cameras any good on rugged smartphones?

It is up to the version, even though the ones with great cameras are likely to be pricey choices. In the other words, if you need a good camera for a journey, you can be better served from spending on the budget-friendly fundamental rugged smartphone and take more pennies for the high-quality camera instead. 

4. What does it mean if the rugged smartphone is unlocked?

Smartphones that are unlocked can not be exclusive to a particular carrier. On the other hand, you are capable of jumping from carriers to networks by swapping out the SIM card. The locked smartphones have software that avoids the phone from operating for the networks of different carriers. Being unlocked is the fancy attribute of the rugged smartphone since you are capable of using it in other spots via the globe.

Wrapping It Up

Selecting the ideal rugged phone is something which could be seen as crucial and from all we have discussed above taking the suitable smartphones can be handy than before. Be that as it could, make sure that you test the primary details of your option before grabbing the best rugged smartphones on the current market. 

Finally, if you find this post useful, please pay more visits to our site and take the one along with you. Thank you!