Finally, a phone that matches a Land Rover owners outdoor lifestyle.
The Land Rover Explore Rugged Phone costs £249 from C247.com
5 Star Review
In this review, we are covering the Land Rover Explore rugged phone which just like the car is built for the outdoors. This phone comes about after a partnership between Bullitt & Landrover. This phone can be bought from C247.com for £249.
This phone is perfect for those who love the outdoors and spend there free time hiking or doing other outdoor activities. Later this year a family member is doing the three peak challenge and I have asked them to use this phone and will write a further review once that happens to see if this phone can really handle the pressure a challenge like that can bring to a piece of technology like this.
The Land Rover Explore runs on Modified Android software so it’s easy to use but it does have lots of other outdoor tech to help you such as a gyroscope, barometer, compass & Proximity sensor to name just a few of the outdoor tech that comes in this phone. The explore also gives you metrics such as altitude when hiking up a mountain for example.
This phone also comes with Ordnance survey maps and the viewRanger app which is handy for augmented reality for identifying mountain peaks something for when it’s used in the 3 peak challenge I will write about in more detail.
Moving on to the design of this phone is chunkier in design compared to your average phone. See below the comparison from an iPhone X to the Land Rover.
The Land Rover Explore comes with a 5-inch 1080p screen that is built to last with the Gorilla Glass 5 and comes with a 2-meter drop test as Bullitt has tested this on a wide range of surfaces. The bottom of the phone has been designed to even look like a Land Rover with the Land Rover branding and that grill just under the phone to look just like the grill on a land rover car.
On the back of the phone, you will have noticed 4 metallic ports this is for you to add the Land Rover Adventure kit. This add on not only gives you a whopping additional 3000 mAh battery but also external GPS far better than any other phone I have tested. Also on the back is the camera and you will notice the camera designed like a Land Rover Headlight.
On top of the phone, you will also notice a 3.5mm headphone port for these old school audio fans who are not using Bluetooth yet. On the side of the phone, you will notice the power and volume controls and the other side gives you space for a microSD card and dual sim which helps when you are maybe overseas if outside the EU.
At the bottom of the phone, you will notice the Land Rover Explore uses USB-C for charging and that is the same with the adventure pack on the bonus of the adventure pack is you can use the phone without it as the phone itself has a 4000 mAH battery.
In the adventure kit, you also get a case for the phone as well as a bright Orange carabiner with the Land Rover logo printed on it.
So when using this phone over the last past few weeks on a regular bases this phone can be used in bright sunlight and can also be used when wet so I tested this and it worked 95% of the time when using the touchscreen and this is very good for the kind user that would buy this handset.
As mentioned this phone is perfect for the outdoor use and its IP68 rated and also water-resistant up to 1.5 meters for a 30 minute period. This phone is also resistant to sand, dirt, humidity and saltwater. Meaning if you dropped the phone in a muddy forest or even when on the beach and you drop it into shallow seawater the phone will survive. Land Rover also states this phone can handle extreme weather conditions from -30 °C to 65°C. This will be tested when this phone is taken on the three peaks challenge later this year. It will be interesting to see how it works compared to a normal smartphone in extreme weather conditions.
This phone is also drop tested to 6 feet and I have tested this which I was at Hadleigh Castle where you can find points to drop the phone from a distance. The phone also survived without any damage.
Moving on to the display the 1080p screen display really does help when using this phone. I also loved the ambient light sensor which made it better to use at night as the screen was the right brightness for me to use anytime. The Android interface has been modified for the outside user and the dedicated outdoor app is very easy to access from the home screen.
When you access the outdoor app it offers 6 panels one will be the weather and the other panels can include any of the following:
- Local time
- Sunset & Sunrise times
- Tide times
- UV Index
- Wind Speed
- Sea Temperature
- SOS Torch
Most of these do work without data to your phone but be aware some of the above options like the weather will not work without data.
The Explorer also has the ViewRanger app which gives users the chance to navigate using off-road topographical mapping using the GPS antenna that is built-in to the adventure pack. You can also preload maps if required and this worked very well when I went cycling over the Hadleigh Castle and park area which has lots of off-road tracks.
The only issue you might have is using these GPS options on the phone is the battery power will drain. I hope further testing on the up and coming three peek challenge will give me a more accurate result when using the GPS options on the battery pack.
Something I am very keen to test further is the Skyline in the ViewRanger app. This is an augmented reality feature that allows you to identify a mountain peak just by pointing the camera at the mountain in front of you. The only issue with Skyline is if you don’t have a data connection it won’t work which is an issue.
Moving on to the camera you get given a 16MP rear camera and an 8MP front-facing camera when taking shots on the Land Rover the come accross as very good and when I took the same shot with my iPhone X you could not notice any difference and I was very happy with the quality of pictures and they will make some great memories using this phone.
Taken on the Land Rover Explorer
Last but not least battery life the phone on its own has a battery life of 4000 mAh when using the phone in just regular settings but when using the GPS options you will get about a day’s battery life. The adventure pack gives you an additional 3000mAh meaning when the phone battery is fully charged and the adventure pack is attached you get 7000mAh of battery life that will be more than fine for that adventure. The only issue I have is with the battery pack attached the phone becomes very heavy over 230g in weight.
So overall, The Land Rover Explore is a phone to enjoy the great outdoors to the max and this phone is one of the best on the market. I love the design of this phone from the Land Rover style speaker Grill to the Land Rover style camera lens on the back.
I also like the fact no matter what I did to this phone from dropping it into the mud to even dropping it on concrete at Hadleigh castle this phone is a survivor. This phone is ideal for anyone with these off-road adrenaline junkies or those who simply like the great outdoors. I found the modified operating system is great when you are in a data range but the fact some of the options go offline when you have no data connection I found this a shame and something I hope can be fixed when an updated phone comes out or a software update as this phone is designed to go off-road.
I found the adventure kit of the attachable battery/GPS booster, Case & Carabina a nice addition and it just screams testosterone and makes the phone feel like a real man’s phone. When using this phone I want to cut a tree down it’s that much of a rugged man’s phone.
This phone is waterproof, dustproof due to the IP68 rating and I can’t wait to test this phone at the three peak challenge. So if you want a phone that has that Land Rover style which is rugged and ready for anything the outdoors will bring.
- Design: 5 out of 5
- Camera: 4.8 out of 5
- Battery: 5 out of 5
- Design: 5 out of 5
- Value for Money: 5 out of 5
- Overall rating – 5 stars
If you are looking for this kind of phone at £249 from C247.com it’s well worth the investment and if you own a Land Rover its the perfect rugged accessory for your rugged lifestyle.