Electronics that’ll go the distance
Where would we be without our everyday gadgets? That morning skim through the headlines on your tablet, snapping holiday adventures with your camera, or just gathering some friends with a phone call while on the move - essential stuff these days!
Technology can be a fragile thing though. Drops, knocks, spills and dunks can mean disaster for circuits and screens. Worse again, an unexpected mishap could mean losing important things like addresses, phone numbers and even those painstakingly-gathered photographs.
That’s why we’ve brought together some of the most rugged pieces of tech around for your perusal. From shockproof cameras to phones tough enough for a building site, there’s something for even the most intrepid lifestyles.
Smartphones are putting more power in our pockets all the time. They sling emails, browse the web, play music, text and make plain old voice calls, as well as run piles of apps. And because they’re with us all the time, they take a lot more knocks.
The Samsung Galaxy Xcover is a tougher breed of smartphone that’s waterproof to one metre (bathtub conference calls anyone?), as well as dustproof and scratch-resistant. This makes it perfect for the travails of evening drinks, and even better on hikes, cycles and other excursions. Running Android, it still manages to pack in all the features you’d expect from a smartphone too.
Heavy machinery experts JCB also offer their own take on tough telephony with their range of mobiles. The Sitemaster 3G resists water and dust, is 2-metre drop-tested and can put up with (literally) a ton of pressure. It also squeezes in 5MP pictures and 5 hours of talk time between squashings. There's a SIM-free version as well.
Snapping and filming
With Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and others embedded in our lives, we think nothing of capturing and sharing the moment anymore. That’s fine if you’re chronicling what you’ve made for lunch or capturing a sedate beach getaway, but some situations are more demanding.
Cameras like the Nikon Coolpix S31 have answered the call with their blending of affordability and high megapixel count with water and shock proofing. This can mean anything from reliving a snorkelling trip in exceptional quality, or just taking candid shots in the rain.
For those with more extreme tastes iON’s Air Pro Camcorders are a natural choice. Capable of being mounted on bike handlebars, surfboards, helmets and dashboards, these little marvels will capture those once-in-a-lifetime moments whether hurtling down the slopes or beneath the waves. Their waterproof mics also mean that you’ll hear, as well as see the action again.
Some of our favourite toys, like the iPad are just too fragile by themselves to take into really trying situations. The Griffin Survivor Case looks set to change that. This military grade case uses shatter-resistant polycarbonate and silicone elements to swaddle your iPad in total protection. This means it can shrug off dirt, sand, rain and vibration, while still allowing access to connecters and buttons.
Headphones, on the other hand are always in trying situations. Rolled up, thrown about, taken to the street and into the gym - they need to be tough to last. Monster’s iSport Intensity certainly measure up by being totally machine washable, and featuring a unique SportClip to prevent falls.
Of course, if the unthinkable should happen and any piece of tough tech lets you down, rest assured that you’re covered by the manufacturer’s guarantee, and the John Lewis Service Plan (which covers accidental damage) is available on many electrical items during purchase.