Just How Weatherproof & Rugged is the Samsung Rugby Smart Android Smartphone? I Tested It Out!


You know that if you expose your smartphone to water, most likely, you are going to damage it. And, on top of that, you will probably void your warranty with your carrier. In many if not all smartphones, there are moisture indicators to determine if you accidentally dropped your phone into the sink or toilet. Usually, these are in the headphone jack space or under or near the battery. They turn pink if they have been exposed to water. Well, it’s a bit more difficult with the Samsung Rugby Smart (model SGH-I847) because this smartphone is designed to get a bit wet or take a fall. And that is what makes it a great smartphone for kids or for people who are just a little clumsy.


I decided that I really wanted to test out the claims that it was really rugged, durable and was sealed enough to keep out dirt and moisture. So my kids and I came up with three test, but you are going to have to watch the video below to see how well it works (video also available directly on YouTube here):


Obviously there are a lot of Android phones on the marketplace, many of them boasting of huge screen sizes or multiple processors or HDMI outputs. Well, I really don’t think you would want to drop any of those they way I did in the video above. And the thing is with the Rugby Smart, you get all of the great characteristics of Android 2.3 Gingerbread, but built into a rugged, water-resistant case. Here are some quick highlights of the Rugby Smart:

  • Meets military specifications (MIL-STD 810F)/rated IP67 for dust and water resistance
  • Can keep working even after being dropped about 7 feet without a case
  • Strengthened glass that is scratch & drop resistant
  • Can withstand extreme temperatures like in a hot car (160 degrees F) or a cold mountain slope (-60 degrees F)
  • Sealed physical keys for navigation (even with gloves on)
  • 3.7″ Super AMOLED screen which means colors are bright and vivid w/ 480×800 pixel resolution
  • Forward facing camera (1.3 megapixels)
  • Rear facing camera (5.0 megapixels) (HD video recording as well)
  • Runs on AT&T’s 4G HSPA+ network
  • Weight – 4.4 oz
  • Standby time – 10 days
  • Talk time – 3 hours
  • Battery size – 1650 mAh
  • CPU – 1.4 GHz
  • Internal memory – 512 MB/External memory – 32 GB
  • Samsung’s TouchWiz 3.0 which gives enhance usability through multiple customizable home screens and other real-time apps


Obviously, the best place to see more specs are on the product page.

HighTechDad Ratings

I have been using the Samsung Rugby on and off for the past month and have to say that it is a solid (and rugged) contender in the Android space. I was able to easily integrate it with my work email system (Microsoft Exchange) as well as a variety of other IMAP and POP emails. All of my social networks are great, especially after I downloaded the latest versions from Google’s Play (formerly the Google Marketplace). And social works great especially with the Samsung Media Hub which integrates a variety of social apps into one. The Rugby is peppy and doesn’t get bogged down (much), but I do recommend getting a task manager so that you can regularly kill background tasks. The camera works well (and produced some great HD videos which you hopefully saw in the water resistance test video above).


The Ruby Smart, available on AT&T, retails for $449.99 (“no commitment price”), but if you sign a 2-year contract, it goes for $99.99. Here’s a secret though, you can get the Rugby Smart through Amazon for just $0.01 (yes, you do have to be a new customer but read the details over there for more info).

I think that the Samsung Rugby Smart might be a pretty good smartphone for a kid who is just getting a new phone. It can handle bumps, drops and water. Kids are pretty good at being hard on devices, and I believe the Rugby Smart would handle its share of hard knocks. Android, in my opinion, isn’t quite as intuitive as an iPhone, but it is definitely pretty easy to use and configure.

EASY TO GEEK FACTOR – is the device easy to get up and running
FAMILY FRIENDLY – does the device fit well into family environments
RECOMMENDABILITY– would I recommend it to others (more means “yes”)
PRICE POINT – does the price reflect the product function
OVERALL – my general rating

Disclosure Text : I have a material connection because I received a gift or sample of a product for consideration in preparing to write this content. I was/am not expected to return this item or gift after my review period. All opinions within this article are my own. More information can be found in my About page as well as here.

HTD says: If you want to be rough with your smartphone, you might want get a Samsung Rugby Smart.


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Global Product Review Disclosure

Disclosure: This is a global disclosure for product review articles on HighTechDad. It does not apply to Automobile reviews and there are other exceptions. Therefore, it may or may not be applicable to this particular article. I may have a material connection because I may have received a sample of a product for consideration in preparing to review the product and write this or other content. I was/am not expected to return the item after my review period. All opinions within this and other articles are my own and are typically not subject to the editorial review from any 3rd party. Also, some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate” or “advertising” links. These may be automatically created or placed by me manually. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item (sometimes but not necessarily the product or service being reviewed), I will receive a small affiliate or advertising commission. More information can be found on my About page.

About HighTechDad

Michael Sheehan (“HighTechDad”) is an avid technologist, writer, journalist, content marketer, blogger, tech influencer, social media pundit, loving husband and father of 3 beautiful girls living in the San Francisco Bay Area. This site covers technology, consumer electronics, Parent Tech, SmartHomes, cloud computing, gadgets, software, hardware, parenting “hacks,” and other tips & tricks.

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