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Rugged phones in Nigeria: Everything to know about these armored smartphones

Rugged phones in Nigeria: Everything to know about these armored smartphones

Rugged phones in Nigeria: Everything to know about these armored smartphones

Are you looking for a rugged phone in Nigeria, do you even know what a rugged phone / armored phone is? Is the first thing that comes to your mind a mobile phone clad like a U.S marine in full body armor? Your guess surprisingly might not be as far off the mark as you think.

The modern smartphone has taken a long 27-year journey to reach the level it is at currently, what were once bulky and large luxury items have become small, compact devices we can’t imagine life without.

Even though we frequently call smartphones mobile phones, the 2 terms technically refer to different devices. A smartphone and a mobile phone are both mobile devices you can use to call and send texts. That’s about where a mobile phone stops, though some also feature a camera- that’s oftentimes not as good.

A smartphone has all kinds of extra functionalities, like Internet access, the option of downloading apps, and a better camera. This gives you the option of answering emails via your phone and to share photos you take with your friends right away.

Another difference is that mobile phones often have a physical keypad, while smartphone keyboards are usually virtual in the form of a touchscreen. And although technology around smartphones has grown leaps and bounds, many phone users still remember a particular mobile phone rather fondly, this phone is the Nokia 3310.

Nokia, on September 1, 2000, announced a phone that would go on to become not just one of its most popular handsets, but one of the most popular mobile phones ever made.

Made of two layers of plastic, the legendary Nokia 3310 was a hit with consumers worldwide. The Nokia 3310 design remains one of the most iconic in mobile phone history with a shape designed to facilitate a good solid grip when handled, but its main selling point was its seeming indestructibility. Indeed, in the last decade the term “indestructible Nokia 3310” has become one of the most famous memes in the tech world.


The Nokia 3310 isn’t as “indestructible” as the memes suggest though, however, there’s no doubt it is very durable and can take multiple beating and most times, come out without a scratch. Beatings that the modern smartphone cannot take with the same level of swagger and confidence.

Most modern smartphones are simply not designed to take a lot of damage. Smartphone makers want to make their phones thinner, lighter, smaller, faster, frameless, edgeless with larger screens and so forth are all built-into the design and manufacture of the devices usually with using materials like aluminum and glass, making them into very fragile devices. That’s why there’s such a huge demand for smartphone cases — people have learned, sometimes the hard way that most smartphones are fragile.

Countless memes have been made about smartphone owners in Nigeria, falling with their phones in their pocket, only to hear a ‘crack’ and wishing it was their legs that got broken instead of their phones. But does this mean there aren’t any smartphones in the Nigerian market able to keep up with our day to day activities with all its bumps and slips and accidents?

Enter the rugged phone or armored phone. If you’re a clumsy person (generally speaking about everyone) and you need to get a smartphone, look no further because this is the device for you.

These phones are the closest thing to the legendary Nokia 3310 in terms of durability and are rated as IP68 for dust and water resistance, which means they should operate even while placed in 10 feet of water for up to an hour. They should also survive falls of up to 6 feet which is more than the industry standard which only requires drops from up to 1.2m (4 feet) onto a hard surface to incur damage.

The rugged phone in Nigeria is the ideal phone for your day to day You can take rugged phones on a building site in any weather and leave it out in the open and it will withstand everything the seasons (or elements) throw at it. Take it with you from any hot environment into a cold area and back again, and thanks to the phone’s thermal shock resistance it will handle the extreme temperature changes comfortably with no impact on usability, You can leave it on the deck of your sailing boat and it will resist the corrosive nature of the seawater spray and salt fog. Leave it on the floor, right by your side, when replacing a leaky tap under a sink and it will not shy away from water. It seems the rugged phone in Nigeria is the much needed ‘second coming’ of the Nokia 3310 that smartphone users have been waiting on.

What is a Rugged Phone?

The word “rugged” can be used to describe something that is “able to withstand hardship, strain, or exposure” and that’s a fairly good idea of what you should think of when you come across the term “armored phone or rugged phone”. We picture tough and durable phones that are able to withstand tons of punishment like the smartphone accidentally falling into water or dropping from your pocket to the concrete floor, and this is what we should expect when you buy a rugged smartphone.

Rugged phones are designed to be used by everybody in Nigeria and do not require expert know how to operate.

Who are these phones for?

The answer is that rugged phones in Nigeria are for all Nigerians and are designed to resist dust, water and physical damage from drops onto hard surfaces, extreme temperatures, and all kinds of hazards that would normally render their non-rugged counterparts inoperable. It’s these qualities that make rugged smartphones best suited for people who work, live or play outdoors because there is an increased likelihood of their phones being exposed to these hazards.

What is ruggedized?

Some phones may be said to be ruggedized which generally means they have a hard rubberized exterior, where this is the case they will usually state that they are also Shockproof and this is because the tough rubberized exterior will absorb the shock from drops of a meter or two. Don’t expect them to survive being dropped out of a 6th-floor apartment window though, but they should take most bumps and knocks in their stride.

Ingress Protection Rating

Most rugged phones will have some form of Ingress Protection Rating (IP rating). But what is this and what is the working behind it?

IP ratings are an international standard that categorizes and rates the degree of protection mechanical and electrical casings provide against the intrusion of dust and water and aims to provide users with a clear hint of what they can look forward to, rather than the vague marketing terms such as waterproof. Many rugged phones will have an IP rating such as IP67/IP68. The first digit 6, shows how well it’s protected against ingress from solid particles and level 6 would be the highest on this scale showing it’s dust-tight.

The second digit, in this case, 7, shows how well it is protected from liquid ingress and a 7 would show it been tested by immersion in up to 1 meter of water for 30 minutes.

A rugged phone with an IP67 rating could, therefore, be described as a dustproof phone and a waterproof phone.

Gorilla Glass and Sapphire Glass

You would find out that some of best-rugged cell phone designs integrate some form of toughened glass on the screen. This could be Sapphire Glass or Gorilla Glass. This glassworks because it is designed to be harder than most standard objects. Minerals are all rated on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness, by integrating tough minerals into the glass it makes them harder and therefore more scratch resistant.

The Mohs scale goes from 0 to >10. At the bottom of the scale are things like sodium and potassium and at the top of the scale are diamonds. It would be very expensive to make a screen from diamonds but it’s viable to include minerals in the glass to make them harder and they can, therefore, better resist being scratched by softer items such as iron, steel and nickel. If you look at some of the best-rugged smartphone designs, it is commonplace to see these sort of screens.

Consumer-Grade Power, Rugged Protection

A new wave of rugged phones are now emerging. These smartphones deliver enterprise-grade durability in a more user-friendly format. Rugged devices offer improved durability and work-life balance for phone users, pairing the toughness to withstand drops and splashes with the flagship attributes and functionality of higher-end consumer phones.


Rugged phones are beginning to look more like their consumer counterparts in terms of processing power and user interfaces, this certainly is great news for phone users as they leverage their mobile investments to run more sophisticated applications and generate additional benefit.


Apart from the list of the most popular mobile phone manufacturers in the world there are brands that pay special attention to protecting their gadgets, these are the top manufacturers of rugged phones in Nigeria:

  • Caterpillar
  • Ginzzu
  • Blackview

Caterpillar brand is known worldwide as a manufacturer of heavy construction equipment, in 2014 they decided to occupy the niche of secure and solid smartphones. Almost all the models of the manufacturer can withstand immersion in water for several meters, bumps and drops.

In the production of smartphones with the IP67 and IP68 index, that is, protected from water and dust, the Chinese company Ginzzu also specializes. Phone models cannot boast of powerful technical stuffing. So lovers of rugged smartphones appreciate Ginzzu more likely for a long battery life and reliable assembly.

Blackview has existed in the secure smartphone market since 2014, but is already making wave its competitors in the market. Unlike Ginzzu and Cat, the Chinese brand Blackview creates smartphones that differ in power both outside and inside.

Thus, choosing which smartphone is best for you, focus on the tasks that you set for them and the capabilities of your own wallet.

Other Manufacturers Of Armored Phones

  • ZTE


In Conclusion

If you are on the market for a rugged phone in Nigeria this guide should help you. Whether choosing a waterproof or rugged smartphone, you now know everything you will need to make the best choice for your needs.

For mobile phones in the workplace, the rugged smartphone or armored smartphone represents a huge and convenient step forward. Field workers and employees in other heavy-duty/heavy use industries know the value of having a phone you can drop or douse. Now, they’re asking for more: a smartphone with the same high-grade features as the top consumer devices, and in addition workplace extras that support productivity in the field.

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