The idea of a rugged smartphone isn’t new, and one of the popular names in this category is Kyocera. The company showcased their latest ultra rugged smartphone at MWC 2015 with a launch targeted at European markets, called the Kyocera Torque, not be confused by the device of the same name, by the same company, that was released in the US almost two years ago. We got to spend some time with this device, and here is our first impressions about the Kyocera Torque!
As is the case with any ruggedized smartphone, the design of the Torque is very industrial, and it is quite thick. Physical home, back, and recent apps, buttons are found up front, and all the ports are covered to maintain its dust and waterproof nature. Despite how thick it is, the Torque is still easy to hold on to, given its rather small footprint overall.
When it comes to the specifications, the device features a 4.5-inch display with a 720p resolution, with a resulting pixel density of 326 ppi, and is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 610 processor, clocked at 1.4 GHz, and backed by 2 GB of RAM. 16 GB of internal storage is also available, further expandable up to 128 GB via microSD. LTE, along with a full suite of connectivity options is available, and on the battery front, the device packs a large 3,100 mAh battery, which should allow for some impressive longevity. The Torque also comes with an 8 MP rear camera and a front-facing 2 MP unit.
On the software side of things, the device runs Android 4.4 Kitkat with a few customizations added by Kyocera, but its not a very heavy skin, and retains a lot of the UI elements of stock Android, which should allow for a smooth performance overall.
Moving onto the features that make the Kyocera Torque unique starts with the display itself. You have the ability to use the display while wearing gloves, and also if the screen or your hands are wet, which is ideal for those who work in construction or any other harsh environments where you might have to deal with the elements.
The other feature is in the fact that the Torque comes with a Military Standard 810G rating for protection against dust, shock, extreme temperatures, low pressure, solar radiation, salt, rain, humidity, and water immersion, with dust and waterproofing covered under a IP68 rating as well, which means that it can be immersed in up to 1 meter of water for as long as 30 minutes without any negative impact on performance. Another useful feature is that the Torque also supports wireless charging, so its definitely one of the more feature-packed rugged smartphones we’ve seen.
Something you may have noticed is that the front of the phone doesn’t come with a speaker above the display for use during voice calls, because of what Kyocera calls “Smart Sonic Receiver.” The display actually vibrates to deliver sound and audio to your ear, similar to what we saw with the Sharp Aquos Crystal. Also worth mentioning is that future iterations of the device will feature embedded solar panels in the display to help charge it.
So there you have it – a quick look at the Kyocera Torque! This is definitely one of the better rugged smartphones we’ve seen, not only in terms of the protection it offers, but also due to the various features and enhancements it packs to further augment the overall experience.
Stay tuned with Android Authority as we continue to bring you more great coverage from MWC 2015!