The Reason for Rugged

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At Kyocera, we like to talk about our phones as being “Rugged for a Reason,” but saying “a reason” is a tad misleading. There’s more than a single reason for going rugged – and every business and individual has reasons of their own. From performing reliably in harsh environments to withstanding events that would normally lead to damage to the screen, battery and beyond, rugged devices are changing the way we think about mobile devices – and changing how we use them. As technology marches forward, our world shrinks. Increasingly, it is shrinking right into our pockets. It wasn’t that long ago that smartphones were a luxury. Today, they’re close to a necessity.

According to Pew Research, more than 75 percent of Americans now own smartphones. We rely on these devices for everything from keeping in contact to accessing information to mapping a route to taking pictures, video and beyond. We seem to spend more time with our smartphones than we do with anything – or anyone – else. These often-fragile devices, however, are traditionally unreliable when it comes to taking on the bumps and bruises that come with constant usage, and with life itself. But rugged devices are on the rise, and Kyocera is leading the way with a portfolio of devices that aren’t just built to survive where other phones fail; they’re built to thrive.

There are many reasons to go rugged, including:

Rugged for Harsh Environments

 Not everyone works behind a desk or a counter. Industries like construction, manufacturing, transportation and law enforcement work in harsh and unpredictable environments every day. For these industries and others, rugged devices are a critical tool for executing everyday business, and have been for some time. Rugged devices have been around for years but, until recently, they were typically built specifically for enterprise organizations, and required a large-scale investment. In the last several years, however, a new generation of devices brought ruggedized features into more attractive devices sold by nationwide carriers at prices comparable to standard mobile phones. In other words, rugged is available to everyone today.

While technology has changed, the reasons for utilizing rugged devices in harsh environments have not. Businesses and workers require devices that can not only withstand the environmental challenges they face every day, but also continue operating at full force without missing a beat. Every second of downtime costs businesses money. That’s why companies rely on dependably rugged Kyocera devices to ensure business moves continuously forward. Kyocera’s rugged devices are designed to meet IP68 for dust- and waterproofing and Military Standard 810G for protection against hazards like dust, shock, vibration, temperature extremes, blowing rain, low pressure, solar radiation, salt fog, thermal shock, icing and freezing rain, humidity and water immersion. Devices like the Kyocera’s newest rugged smartphone, the DuraForce PRO, don’t just survive, but thrive in challenging environments with features Glove and Wet Touchscreen Operation and Underwater Mode.

 Rugged for Business

Industries that involve harsh environments aren’t the only ones taking advantage of deploying rugged devices to enhance field operations. From optimizing logistics to utilizing big data to make informed, real-time decisions, rugged devices are opening new doors for a variety of businesses. In the modern economy, data is king. Collecting, distributing, parsing and acting on data drives the decisions of businesses every day, in real time. Mobile devices are the conduits for the flow of information. It is imperative that they stay connected – and functional – 24/7. Kyocera rugged devices make sure they do, with long battery life, 4G LTE connectivity and rugged designs able to stand up to what life, and business, throw at it. 

Rugged for Life

Life is full of obstacles and people are clumsy. That’s the reason mobile-device insurance and repair businesses are booming. At some point, just about everyone dunks his or her phone in the toilet, drops it on the concrete or submerges it in the mud. We’ve become so accustomed to having a smartphone in our pocket at all times that we tend to treat them more like a leather wallet than an expensive computer. And considering we use our smartphones more than we use our wallets (in fact, some people use their smartphones as their wallets), our devices are in grave danger every single day. It may seem hyperbolic, but it’s true.

Aftermarket cases and plastic screen protectors can help blunt the damage from short drops and bumps, but the amount of protection they offer is often tied directly to price and sacrifices usability. Strong cases typically approach (or even exceed) $100 and often hinder accessibility to buttons and ports. Truly rugged devices like Kyocera’s offer similar protection right out of the box, without the cost of a clunky case or the sacrificed usability.

Rugged for Adventure

Life wasn’t meant to be lived sitting down. The desire to get outside and play is wired into our DNA. Whether you’re mountain biking in the Rockies, skydiving over the Mojave or hiking the Appalachian Trail, certain rugged devices – like the Kyocera DuraForce PRO – are built for adventure. With a 13-megapixel camera and a super-wide-view HD action video camera, the DuraForce PRO enables adventurous users to capture the excitement and relive memoires for years to come. There’s even a case available for DuraForce PRO that lets it mount to today’s most popular action-camera mounting systems, so users won’t have to worry about holding the phone as they bomb down the mountain or reel in the trophy fish. And of course, active consumers should always make sure their devices have the rugged features built to withstand the harshest environments, to be confident that their smartphones will survive the adventures, regardless of how perilous they may be.

When it comes to rugged devices, everyone has a reason. What’s yours?

Say Hello to Kyocera’s Newest Rugged Smartphone with All-In-One Super Wide View HD Action Camera: DuraForce PRO

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Kyocera prides itself on creating mobile devices that are rugged, durable and dependable. Today, I am thrilled to announce the introduction of our newest rugged smartphone—DuraForce PRO. Building on the legacy of our ruggedized smartphones like the DuraForce, Brigadier and Torque, DuraForce PRO raises the bar with stronger specs across the board. And, DuraForce PRO is the first rugged smartphone to augment its standard cameras with a super wide view action camera.

Like its predecessors in Kyocera’s rugged lineup, DuraForce PRO is certified to IP68 for dustproofing and waterproofing (now up to 2 meters deep for up to 30 minutes) and Military Standard 810G for ruggedization. Along with the new action camera, the PRO adds a stronger processor, a larger 5” display, more memory, a larger battery, a fingerprint sensor on the power button for security and much, much more.

Action cameras have become extremely popular for recreational and business use. Adding one to DuraForce PRO means there’s no need to carry a separate device. Because it’s built into a 4G LTE smartphone, you get a 5” high-definition viewfinder to watch what you’re shooting and, instead of having to dock with a PC, the videos and photos can be shared, streamed and posted wirelessly, virtually in real time. Adding to the functionality, DuraForce PRO is waterproof and has an Underwater Mode for the cameras that keeps the viewfinder on, but switches the controls to the phone’s buttons.

For the business world, where durability enhances productivity and saves money, Kyocera devices have become the stocked solution of choice at all four national U.S. carriers and two of the top three in Canada. DuraForce PRO builds on our strength in this category by supporting Android for Work, enterprise-grade Wi-Fi, and many other important features. We’re also very proud of our growing ecosystem of application and accessory developers big and small, whose collaboration allows businesses to turn our phone into customized solution for a variety of industries and vertical markets.

DuraForce PRO has a long list of features and specs that make it stand out in the rugged smartphone category. I won’t list them all here, but encourage you to check out our more detailed official announcement of the phone. Launching nationwide this fall, we’re confident that DuraForce PRO strikes an ideal balance between performance, affordability and durability. Whether you work in tough profession or you’re just an adventurous type who wants to capture memories while you live life to the fullest, the new DuraForce PRO is the right device for you.

For more information about the new Kyocera DuraForce PRO, visit www.kyoceramobile.com/duraforce-pro or follow us on Twitter at @kyoceramobile for more details on device availability in the coming weeks and months.

John is director of corporate communications at Kyocera. He has worked on the Kyocera team shaping its communications strategy over the past 15 years – 13 of those years in-house and two with a Kyocera agency partner. John has always had a passion for writing and began his career as a newspaper reporter at the Whittier Daily News, part of a multi-paper syndicate in Los Angeles.  When not working, he and his wife can usually be found coaching, shuttling, refereeing or cheering for his three sons and their numerous plays, concerts and sports teams.