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Cat S50c ruggedized Android launches for Verizon

By Stephen Schenck January 15, 2016, 12:09 pm

Smartphone shoppers looking for a phone that stand up to more than a little abuse have plenty of options: they can shop for a model like the Galaxy S6 Active that builds its protection right into the phone’s body, or they can always outfit a slightly more fragile handset with a heavy-duty protective case. And for as many of us that turn to that latter configuration, a purpose-built rugged phone still sounds pretty appealing, and maybe the biggest problem there is a lack of selection. Over on Verizon, users already have the impact-resistant Droid Turbo 2, and now they’re getting another option in the form of Cat(erpillar)’s latest smartphone, the S50c.

As we’re only too familiar with from previous Cat models, these phones tend to play up their rugged design at the cost of specs, and that’s once again true here: the S50c gets just a Snapdragon 400 SoC, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage (with microSD expansion), and an 8MP/2MP camera pair. It runs Lollipop, sure, but an older Android 5.0 release. On the plus side, we’re not looking at another qHD display like on last summer’s S40, and the 4.7-inch 720p panel here should be sharp enough, given its size.

And of course, as a rugged smartphone, the S50c offers IP67 certification, built to withstand water immersion and accidental drops. Workplace-friendly features include a touchscreen designed to function even when wearing gloves, and a push-to-talk mode.

Really, though, the big draw for the S50c may be its Verizon compatibility. The phone’s being sold direct from the manufacturer (as well as through various retail partners) for just about $400, but it’s ready to be activated on Verizon’s LTE network. Given the scope of coverage there, this just might prove to be an attractive option for workers needing a reliable phone even when out on the job in remote areas.

Source: Cat

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