If you look for the most unique smartphones available in India at the moment, then the CAT S60 has to be right up there. This device does a lot of things which other smartphones can’t even dream about. But is that enough to woo customers, especially when it sports a Rs 64,990 price tag?
It will take a few minutes for it to sink in that the CAT S60 is actually a smartphone. It looks like nothing else we have seen before. But, yes, it is an Android smartphone that gives you military grade water, dust and drop proofing. This also makes it a perfect phone for many environments. Plus, this is the only phone that can offer you a thermal imaging camera from FLIR. The phone has a dedicated SOS button, another programmable button as well as two toggles which come into play when you want to use the phone really deep under water.
What is good?
You will never ever worry about what will happen to this phone if it falls on the ground or slips into the pool. It is that kind of phone and just its look gives you that kind of confidence. I did take the phone into a pool and could still use the screen under water. So, the overall design as well as the rough and tough capabilities will make it a favourite with a lot of people who need a phone in their workplace, which might not always be a copy office room.
Thermal cameras are hard to find and own. So this phone might be one of the best ways for you to get one. The phone has a regular camera too, but the thermal camera has a very different lens as well as app. While it might not have much use for regular customers, professionals in many sectors will just love this add-on. For instance, its uses in the security and construction industries are amazing.
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The phone comes with a host of apps which are otherwise hard to find. There is even a dedicated app store with apps that users of such a phone would love, right from outdoor ones to those helping with productivity at a construction site. I love the pre-burned Hike app that tells you the altitude as well as a your location. There is even an SOS button in the app in case you get caught in a tight spot.
The S60 comes with almost all features you would look for in a regular phone. Powered by a Snapdragon 617 octa-core processor with 3GB RAM, the phone should be able to do most jobs easily. It comes with 32 GB storage and runs Android Marshmallow, which should keep most users happy at least for the coming year.
What is not that good?
You are paying a premium here for the waterproofing, the thermal camera and such additional features. So this means the phone itself is a bit under par for what you would get at this price point. So it lacks a Full HD screen and offers limited viewing angles. It doesn’t have a great regular camera and is underpowered when it comes to the processor. At the price of an iPhone or any Android flagship you get a phone that scores a fraction when it comes to benchmarks.
Also, you have to really need the waterproofing before you buy this phone. Otherwise, just the fact that you have to open flaps to push in a micro-USB or headphone cable will start frustrating you. This is clearly not for those who want to just tout a really different phone.
Should you buy?
Yes, if you work in an industry that puts you in the middle of the action, that too outdoors. While the company thinks the phone will appeal to those who live an active lifestyle, the quality of the primary camera might just put off most of them from picking this as their adventure phone. Still, this is a great phone for the gap it tries to plug and I won’t be surprised if there are some bulk enterprise orders being placed for this one.
Estimated street price: Rs 64,990