Friday, May 09, 2014

CAT Active Urban Rugged Phone Case Review



Hi everyone yes I'm back with another phone case review; but this one is extra special as it is a toughy-rugged case one from CAT. Ive shown you more feminine cases up to now; but this one is more for the guys and the girlies that need that extra protection on their phone like me.


Most of you have heard of Caterpillar which is now a household name. It was founded in 1925 with the first crawler type tractor and the formation of Daniel Best's Caterpillar Tractor Company. The CAT brand is now the cornerstone of the Caterpillar portfolio; representing products and services made by Caterpillar from all over the world.


Knowing CAT for tractors and huge machinery I was surprised though to find out they had branched into phone cases; the new Active Urban range so of course they are certainly going to be rugged and durable.


Click the break to read my mega photo loaded CAT phone case review. We just got carried away with so many fun ideas for the photos!




Im really torn when it comes to phone cases. I love my girly bling; but then I can be a bit of a klutz and need that extra protection for my phone; so I adore the rugged side too. So I couldn't wait to receive mine for this review as I know how much I need that extra protection especially when out taking my wildlife photos; in all weathers.



Packaging
When my case arrived I was really impressed with the packaging. I generally just skim over a products packaging but this is definitely worth the mention. It arrived in a large plastic box with a transparent window to see the case and the standard CAT colours black and yellow and of course the CAT logo. 

I did love the yellow handle on the top; obviously for retailers but I liked it anyway. It looked fab hanging from my tree and you could always give it as a gift and hang it somewhere for someone to find it.

On the front of the case is a hole so you can actually feel the highly textured case. It really does have to be felt as you assume its going to feel soft and rubbery. But it doesn't it actually feels like a harder armoured plastic.


Description
On opening my case it felt surprisingly light and comfortable in my hand. The back is highly textured for grip using this modern slatted design. The material is a material I have never met before. I was expecting squidgy bendy rubber and infact its made exclusively from SAIF an active material with unique shock and impact absorption properties. It actually feels hard and firm to the touch with a rigidity that doesn't initially feel its going to bounce....but it really does...I know!
This case will protect your phone from drops of up to 1.8m preventing that dreaded cracked screen.

The whole of the case is made of SAIF and its beautifully made and feels excellent quality too.

All four corners have extra squared nodules to protect from bumps and scrapes. Its these that generally your phone will land on if dropped; so they have added this extra thickness which isn't really noticeable in your hand.

Both edges have anodized metal sides screwed in tightly to support the whole case. CAT have thought of everything in that they have added extra rubber buttons over the phones own for extra protection from dust and moisture.

Measurements
14.5cm x 8cm (5.75 x 3.1 inches).


 Its surprising just how neat the phone looks despite having such a tough case surrounding it, its very minimalistic from the front.


Use
I was looking forward to test running this case with my Samsung S4 as I can be so clumsy due to my shakey hands. Its been a huge worry of mine that my gorgeous S4 will just slip from my fingers and land on our flagstone cottage floors. Its purely luck that I havent dropped it already. So its peace of mind to finally have a lovely rugged case to try.


My phone fitted easily but very tightly into the case. If it had been softer rubber it would have been easier to squeeze in; but being so rigid I just had to take a bit more care. It snapped in firmly and immediately my phone felt extremely well supported and secure. It fits like a surgeons glove and its quite surprising how light it still feels and the extra corners really add to the comfort of holding this phone. Despite it not being a grippy rubber it still has a grippy feel to it due to the recessed strips.

I really love the depth of protection surrounding the camera it gives complete protection to the camera lens if you lay it on its back. This has been a huge bug bear for me over the Samsung Galaxy S4 design due to the fact of the producing the camera lens that is actually raised up so its the first thing that touches any surface you lay the phone on. 
Samsung what were you thinking...really!!!
Its also then going to be the first to get scratched and damaged. Not with this case though; its completely surrounded by a 3mm depth of the case which is also cleverly tapered so not to effect the flash in anyway.


Another Samsung Galaxy S4 design fault is the speaker...the only mono speaker "On the back of the case"....stop me when you see the problem...!
But again CAT have cleverly protected the speaker with its depth of the case.

 The volume button makes a lovely addition as its more pronounced than my S4's own volume button making it easier to use.

 The same for the on/off button its slightly more pronounced so even if your hands are wet or cold its easy to use the buttons and you can grip them.


 The earphone socket and sensors are also well protected.

The charging port gives you plenty of room too. This pik also clearly shows what a nice 3mm edge it gives your screen all the way round so nothing could touch this screen even if you did drop it flat on.


 Even laid flat down on the screen, the raised edges will still keep it off the surface however rough.

CAT tyre

Drop test
Have I dropped my phone on concrete from 1.8 m...for you guys...sorry NOPE... I haven't.
BUT...I'm a reviewer so I'm reviewing this case, I have actually dropped it twice off my bed (by accident) onto a hard wooden floor. It bounced off as my dog jumped on and I watched in horror and slow motion as my gadget baby S4 rocketed into the air and landed...and then...bounced...on the floor...yes it bounced something I really didn't think this rigid material would do. 
A few days later I managed to catch the charging cord and whip it across the floor and again it bounced and NO DAMAGE....It didn't do much for my heart though...sheesh, but this gorgeous CAT case has proved itself to me...Im really impressed as I feel it would have definitely been damaged as the back and sides of the standard S4 case is flimsy PLASTIC...don't get me started on that!
 Thank you CAT ruggedising my phone!


Opinion
Ive been using my gorgeous CAT case since it arrived and I love it more than I thought I would miss my girlie feminine bling; my pretty leather folio cases and still be worried about the front screen not having a front cover. Okay maybe I miss a bit of bling...but its worth it as I have to say Ive fallen in love with this case; its given me complete confidence as it feels grippy enough in my hands (I'd love a bit more...but I always will).

I would like to thank my personal assistant WALLE for the loan of his tracks.

My Tracks......

Despite CATS tough reputation its still slender and lightweight and its stylish modern, design makes it great for both guys and girls. Even though I love my CAT case if your wanting a gift for the guy in your life, this has to be a great pressie as its a slightly more manly if Im completely honest.

 If your guy/girl is a builder, fireman, policeman or works in a garage etc; literally anywhere that's dusty, dirty and dangerous this would make the ideal gift.


Most people recognize the CAT logo and it makes a great designer phone case for those that love their labels too. You would always be proud to show this case off and have the peace of mind to know it will protect your phone. I would also invest in their CAT screen protector at the sametime...but that's just me being ultra careful. ;-) 

Its an ideal affordable gift for anyone who works in a tougher environment, has a demanding lifestyle or is just plain clumsy; as your phone will easily survive those everyday knocks and scrapes with a CAT case.

To show you how strong checkout these drop tests on this video.



Pro's
  • Made from SAIF,
  • Tough, Durable,
  • Gorgeous modern design,
  • Water resistant,
  • Affordable,
  • Lightweight,
  • Rugged.
 Con's
  • None


 Read more about CAT Active Urban rugged phones on their 


You can get your very own CAT Active Urban case via a number of UK retailers
Prices start from £19.99



Also available for the ipad 2,3,4, ipad Air, ipad Mini.



All my thanks goes to the lovely girls at Kondor for sending me this case for this review.
My views and opinions are my own.



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