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JCB ToughPhones Built to Last

David Gilbert


JCB ToughPhones Built to Last

It’s what mobile phone users around the globe have been crying out for. A phone that can withstand an elephant sitting on it. You know the story. You leave your iPhone4 on the seat next to you on the tube and an elephant gets on and sits on it. Phone’s destroyed and the elephant isn’t too happy either.

Well with the launch of four new mobile phones by JCB, in collaboration with Telco firm Data Select, you no longer have to worry about errant elephants destroying your phone as these new devices have been theoretically tested to withstand just such an impact.

Yes, along with being water-resistant, dust-resistant, drop-resistant to two metres the Sitemaster iteration of the Toughphone line can withstand up to one tonne of pressure. Ok so that maybe means only a baby elephant (on a diet) but it’s still pretty impressive. While there have been some other 'tough phones' on the market such as the Samsung Xcover E2370, the Motorola MC55 and the Sonim XP1 there has been nothing like the Toughphone range.

The Toughphone Pro and Pro-Talk are the more expensive in the range costing £245 and £255 respectively. They’re both 100 per cent water and dustproof, tested to military specifications but offer only basic functionality. Both phones have a dual SIM, GPS and GPRS, and can support up to 8GB of memory. The Pro-Talk can be used with other Pro-Talk units as a walkie-talkie.

The Sitemaster (aka the elephant-killer) is available for £115 and is aslo water- and dust-proof, military spec tested, 2m drop-tested and also offers Bluetooth, an FM radio and a laser pointer. As the name would indicate, this phone and all the others in the range are aimed at tradespeople as well as outdoor enthusiasts.

The Tradesman phone is the cheapest in the line costing just £75 and is championed as the world’s first floating phone. It again has the same proofing as the other phones and offers an FM radio and a torch.

The phones all look as you would expect with JCB-branding and the iconic black and gold livery. They will be available from mid-November on the JCB website and all phones come with a one-year guarantee.


November 5, 2010, 6:13 pm

A floating, waterproof phone? I'm sold already! Great for sailing and fishing, would have come in handy when my mate's 3 year old son 'accidentally' dropped my E90 down the toilet :)

How does the walkie-talkie bit work, is there a PMR radio chip in there? I wonder what the range is like? Why don't the networks support push-to-talk over here in the UK?


November 5, 2010, 6:20 pm

@lifethroughalens - they're built by Sonim, which is generally the gold standard in tough handsets. You'll need to check with David for more info though... DAVID!

David Gilbert

November 5, 2010, 8:09 pm

Thanks Gordon!

@lifethroughalens In the spec sheet I downloaded there is no mention of a PMR radio chip though it wasn't the most comprehensive list I've ever seen. All it really says about the radio is that there is an 8 channel 2-way radio.

I agree that a floating phone would come in very handy for a lot of people and at only £75 could be bought just for use while fishing, sailing etc.

Nicholas Pires

November 5, 2010, 8:25 pm

A good phone for when you go out to festivals or clubbing perhaps! especially if you drop it on the floor :-S


November 5, 2010, 8:32 pm

Well someone really ought to talk to them about their website. They keep on discussing applying Nm of pressure. Newton metres are a measure of torque N/m2 are a measure of pressure.



November 5, 2010, 9:24 pm

When you try to make a call using the Tradesman phone, do you hear it suck air through its teeth and complain: "I wouldn't do it like that, mate. Nah, I don't have the parts. You'll have to make the call next week. That'll be £80, thank you."


November 5, 2010, 9:39 pm

Their website is awful - it has no spec list available directly, 4 clicks and a forced 1 minute wait period leading to a nasty .pdf file with next to no nitty gritty details about the phones, just basic stuff :(

The 1800 mAh battery is impressive.

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