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Photo: Priyanka Parashar/Mint
Photo: Priyanka Parashar/Mint

Weather the storm: Tough gadgets for rough use

Looking for a rugged gadget that can survive extreme weather, rain and accidental drops? Here are some options

Most gadgets meant for daily use are not designed for rugged use, be it laptops, smartphones, tablets or even their accessories. A metal body in a smartphone, for example, alone doesn’t guarantee protection against a drop on the floor or a dip in water. Every time it rains people run for cover or immediately remove their gadgets to the safe confines of a bag or their pocket. If you are one of those people who uses the gadgets in a rough manner, here are some devices that might catch your fancy.

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Laptop: Panasonic Toughbook CF 54

Price: 1,39,000

Any mention of Panasonic Toughbooks brings those burly rugged laptops to mind that weigh more than two laptops put together. The Toughbook CF 54 is a different beast altogether. The laptop’s exterior is made of two layers of thick and rugged plastic, with a layer of the Honeycomb magnesium mesh structure for enhanced durability. Most importantly, it weighs just 1.9kg, which is not bad for a 14-inch screen notebook. The laptop can survive drops from a height of 2.5 feet and won’t freeze even if the temperature is -10 degree Celsius. It comes with IP5X (Ingress Protection Rating is given by International Electrotechnical Commission) dust resistance certification. The innards are as powerful as the exterior. It runs on Intel Core i5 with 4GB RAM, 256GB SSD and has a touch screen with screen resolution of 1920x1080p.

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Camera: Olympus Stylus Touch TG-860

Price: 19,980

What good is a camera that can’t survive a harsh climate, rugged terrain or an accidental dip in the water? Olympus’ Stylus Touch TG-860 is a compact point and shooter with two layers of shock-proof and crush proof material. This allows it to survive a drop form a height of 7 feet and weight of 100kg. The camera’s water-proof and dust resistant exterior can endure up to 50 feet of submersion in water. Also, the components are designed so that it won’t freeze in extreme cold of as low as -10 degree Celsius. The camera comes with 16-megapixel CMOS sensor, 5x optical zoom, 3-inch LCD screen and wide range of professional camera modes.

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Smartphone: Samsung Galaxy S7

Price: 48,900

Samsung’s newest flagship Galaxy S7 is their first really rugged smartphone in the S series. The smartphone is one of the few handsets in the high-end segment to get an IP68 certification. This means it is not just dust resistant but can stay under water up to 1.5 metres for more than 30 minutes. The phone’s solid metal exterior gives it a rugged feel too. The Galaxy S7’s other key highlight is its 5.1-inch AMOLED screen which has a resolution of 2560x1440p. The Indian version runs on Samsung’s own Exynos octa-core processor with 4GB RAM. It has dual SIM slots and is the first Samsung phone to run Android Marshmallow out of the box.

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Fitness band: Garmin Vivosmart HR

Price: 13,173

Garmin’s new smartband Vivosmart HR is ideal for fitness freaks who like to swim regularly. Not only can it survive dips but can stay immersed in water up to 50 metres or an equivalent amount of water pressure. This means you don’t have to take it off before taking a swim, shower or washing your hand under tap. The smartband’s other key attraction is its always-on touch screen which is big enough for keeping track of time, weather and reading notifications one receives on the phone configured with it. It can also measure the heart beats, number of steps walked, amount of calories lost and the distance covered.

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Smartphone: Moto G Turbo

Price: 12,499

You don’t need a big wallet to get a water-proof or a dust-resistant phone anymore. The Moto G Turbo is the only budget smartphone that has a IP67 certification where the number 6 stands for water resistance and 7 for dust resistance. You can actually wash your phone under tap or in a bucket. It can survive up to 1 metre under water for 30 minutes, even if the USB port and 3.5mm audio jack are not covered. The phone has a 5-inch screen with a layer of scratch resistant Gorilla Glass 3. The Turbo is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 615 octa-core processor with 2GB RAM and 16GB of internal storage which is, of course, expandable to another 128GB via micro SD.

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