Japanese smartphone manufacturer Kyocera has become well known for its rugged handsets sold through carriers in the United States, and the company's latest addition to its portfolio is the Kyocera DuraForce PRO, available in the U.S. today through Verizon Wireless. Technically speaking, it's the same smartphone as the Kyocera DuraForce PRO that launched via Sprint in November 2016, with the exception of a Sapphire Shield display for improved resilience.
The Kyocera DuraForce PRO with Sapphire Shield display is powered by a Qualcomm MSM8952 Snapdragon 617 System-on-Chip (SoC) housing four Cortex-A53 cores clocked at up to 1.5 GHz per core, and an additional four Cortex-A53 cores operating at a frequency of up to 1.2 GHz. The CPU works hand-in-hand an Adreno 405 graphics chip, but interestingly enough, Verizon's official description for the device mentions 3 GB of RAM, whereas the original model was equipped with only 2 GB of RAM. In any case, the smartphone takes advantage of 32 GB of on-board storage expandable via microSD by up to an additional 128 GB, and also features a 13-megapixel main camera coupled with a 5-megapixel sensor. Lastly, the aforementioned Sapphire Shield covers a 5-inch IPS LCD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080, and overall, the smartphone draws energy from a 3,240 mAh non-removable battery. Hardware specifications aside, one of the biggest selling points of the Kyocera DuraForce PRO is, of course, its military-grade rugged design. It boasts MIL-STD 810G certification for resistance against dust, shock, vibration, blowing rain, low pressure, temperature extremes, solar radiation, salt fog, humidity, temperature shock, icing/freezing rain, and immersion. It is also certified with IPX5/IPX8 waterproofing and can be submerged in 2 meters of water for up to 30 minutes, and also boasts an IP6X dustproof certificate. In addition, the smartphone facilitates underwater photography, as it can detect when it has been immersed in water and switch to "Underwater Mode" automatically. This mode removes the camera controls from the touchscreen and uses the physical buttons instead.
The Kyocera DuraForce PRO with Sapphire Shield display is available today from Verizon Wireless for the price of $17 per month along with a 24-month agreement. Alternatively, prospective buyers can acquire the smartphone unlocked for the retail price of $408.